Recycling Services

The Recycling Program at Evergreen

Evergreen's recycling program is a cooperative project designed to make the process of collecting recyclable materials on campus no more difficult than disposing the items as waste.

Evergreen is Green

Each workstation across campus has been provided with both recycling and garbage containers.

Staff and faculty are responsible for removing trash and recyclable items to recycling centers located in main corridor areas on each floor of academic buildings.

Recycle stations are also located in a variety of locations within the Housing complex.

How to recycle at Evergreen

This section is designed to help answer questions on:

  • Where to recycle items
  • How to recycle
  • What can be recycled

Where to recycle

Each recycle station consists of containers for Mixed Paper, Glass and Plastic, Landfill and Aluminum Cans.

Containers for corrugated cardboard are located on the loading docks of most buildings on campus.

There are two recycle stations in the College Activities (CAB) Building near the food vendors. The recycle station near the Marketplace Deli collects aluminum cans, mixed paper, compost and glass and plastic.

Garbage in = Garbage Out

  • Putting trash or items that cannot be recycled in the recycle containers often results in the entire container being treated as garbage.
  • Garbage costs more to dispose of than disposing recyclable materials and has a negative effect on our environment.
  • The rate we pay to dispose of our recyclables depends on how "clean" or uncontaminated they are.

What can you do to help

  • Do not place food or garbage in any of the recycle containers.
  • Do not put any container that still contains food or drink residue in the recycle containers. If you don't want to rinse them, place them in the garbage.
  • Make sure that the top of any plastic container you want to recycle is smaller than the base. If it isn't, it is not recyclable .
  • Separate out your recyclables. If you place a sack containing aluminum cans, bottles and paper in the co-mingle container, it will be removed and thrown in the garbage.
  • Check your recycle guide for information on which items can be recycled and how to recycle.

If you don't want to take the time to 'recycle it correctly', then don't recycle it at all.

What can be recycled?

For information on how and where to dispose of items, click on the item's name in the following list: Click the links below for additional information.

Aerosol Cans Ferrous metals Packing material, "peanuts"
Alkaline batteries Film Containers - plastic Paint
Aluminum - scrap metal Film Pallets - wood
Aluminum beverage cans Fluorescent lighting Paper
Aluminum Foil/Trays Glass - window Phone books
Antifreeze Glass beverage containers Plastic Bags
Batteries, vehicle, all other types Hardbound books Plastic beverage bottles
Books - hardbound, softbound Hazardous Waste Plastic Utensils, i.e. silverware
Boxes - corrugated, non-corrugated Housing Polystyrene blocks
Butter Boxes I Ice Cream Cartons I Printer cartridges
Cans: aluminum Juice Containers - Frozen Printers
Cans, tin or steel Laboratory glass Pyrex
Cardboard - corrugated, non-corrugated Landscape waste Scanners
Cartridges for printers and copiers Latte Cups Sensitive Documents
Chemicals Light Bulbs Shredded paper
Computer disks, tape Lithographic silver and solvents Softbound books and journals
Computers Machinery - surplus Solvents
Confidential documents Magnetic media Styrofoam: Peanuts, Blocks
Copier cartridges Margarine Containers Take-Out Food Containers
Copy Machines Microwave packaging Telephone directories
Corrugated cardboard Milk Cartons Tires
Dishes Newspapers Vehicle batteries
Diskettes Newsletters Videotape
Equipment - surplus Office Equipment Wood waste
FAX Machines Oil Yogurt Cups

Paper recycling

Recyclable paper is collected from 'Blue' Mixed paper containers at recycle stations and from the dumpsters labeled Mixed Paper in Housing areas.

Guidelines for paper recycling:

  • Remove all tape and clips.
  • No soiled paper (napkins, tissue, pizza boxes, latte cups, candy bar wrappers, etc.).
  • Staples are okay.
  • Remove metal or plastic strip from hanging files.
  • No rubber bands, large metal fasteners or string.
  • Remove paper from 3-ring or spiral binders.
  • Binders go in Glass and Plastic.

Items for the Mixed Paper container:

Adding Machine Tape Faculty/Staff Directories Softcover Books
Blue or Green bar Computer Paper Fax Paper Sticky Notes
Brochures File Folders Tab Cards
Carbonless Forms, i.e. NCR Paper Junk Mail Tablets and Notebook Paper
Card Stock and Tablet Backs Magazines and Journals Telephone Directories
Cereal Boxes, remove the liner Notebook Paper Unsoiled Food Trays
Copy Paper, White Paper Bags White Copy Paper
Copy Paper, Colored Shredded Paper Newsletters
Egg Cartons Small Boxes from Office or Lab supplies  
Envelopes Soda Pop Cartons  

Confidential & Sensitive documents

The Recycling Program does not shred the paper it receives. There is a large paper shredder in the basement of the library building in the recycling cage. Because shredding paper greatly increases its volume, use of the shredder is restricted to sensitive or confidential materials. If you need to access the shredder, call Business Services at extension 6317 or 6347 to have them open the cage for your use.

Telephone Directories

Old telephone books should be collected and deposited in the Mixed Paper dumpsters on the loading docks for recycling. Small numbers of outdated phone books may be placed in the Mixed Paper bins at recycle stations for recycling.


Hardback or paper books that are no longer needed or wanted are donated to the Books for Prisoners program. Deposit books in the bin outside the Bookstore in the CAB building.

Softbound Books

A small number of manuals, journals and other softbound books may be recycled as Mixed Paper.

If you have a large quantity, please call Recycling at extension 6349 to arrange a pickup.

You can also deposit softbound books in the Books for Prisoners bin outside the Bookstore in the CAB building.

Corrugated cardboard

Corrugated cardboard is cardboard that is made up of two layers of paper separated by a middle wavy layer. Corrugated cardboard boxes must be flattened and free of contaminants.

5 or fewer flattened boxes: Place them next to your recycle station and your regular custodian will remove them.

More than 5 flattened boxes: Take the flattened boxes to the cardboard dumpster closest to your building (usually near the loading dock).

Non-corrugated cardboard or pressboard

You can recycle non-corrugated cardboard or pressboard in the Mixed Paper container or with the corrugated cardboard.

Non-corrugated cardboard includes:

  • Boxes from office or lab supplies
  • Card stock
  • Cereal boxes
  • Gift boxes
  • Paper bags
  • Soda pop cartons
  • Tablet and notebook backs

Glass and Plastic

Non-paper recyclable items are placed in the Red container at campus recycle stations or in the Glass and Plastic container in the exterior areas at Housing.

Non-paper recyclable items include:

  • Tin and steel cans.
  • Aluminum cans belong in the gray Aluminum can container.
  • Aluminum foil / trays (must be clean)
  • Film containers (plastic)
  • Glass bottles and jars
  • Milk cartons and juice boxes (must be clean)
  • Plastic bottles, jars, jugs and tubs (labeled #1 through #7)
  • Pie Pans

Remove all caps and lids. Rinse bottles, jars, etc. Flatten drink boxes. No food contaminated articles accepted.

The following items belong in the garbage and are not recyclable:

  • Aerosol cans
  • Butter boxes
  • Ceramics
  • Dishes
  • Frozen juice containers
  • Ice cream containers
  • Latte cups
  • Light bulbs
  • Metals with food contamination
  • Microwave packaging
  • Mirrors
  • Plastic bags
  • Plastic tubs such as yogurt cups and margarine containers
  • Plastic utensils such as silverware
  • Styrofoam
  • Take-out food containers
  • Waxy paper cups
  • Window glass

Aerosol Cans

  • Aerosol cans cannot be recycled.


People can take their personal used NiCd, NiMH, Li ion, Li polymer and lead acid batteries to Thurston County HazoHouse or one of these locations

Units that generate used batteries from college owned equipment should contact EHS (6111) for more information.

 Batteries from personal vehicles are accepted for recycling at most auto supply stores.

Beverage Containers: Tin, Glass, Plastic and Aluminum

Beverage containers are recycled in the Co-Mingle containers at recycle stations on campus or in the Glass and Plastic containers located in the exterior areas in Housing.

Drink boxes, such as milk, juice or soy cartons should be rinsed and flattened before placing in the Glass and Plastic containers.

Please remove the lids and caps before recycling.

Cartridges for Printers and Copiers

Most cartridges come from the manufacturer with a return shipping label. Repack the used cartridge in the original shipping box, affix the return label and send it through Mailing Services.

If you do not receive a return shipping label, the Bookstore has a supply of free mailers with labels which you can use to return small cartridges such as ink jet printer cartridges.

If you have a larger cartridge and do not have a return shipping label, place the cartridge in a box next to the recycle station and it will be picked up and recycled.

Chemicals, solvents, sharps, and hazardous wastes

All chemicals, solvents and hazardous wastes generated on campus must be disposed of through Environmental Health and Safety (867-6111). You will need to fill out a "Dangerous Waste" label and attach to the materials before they can be picked up.

Fluorescent Tubes

  • Do not remove or dispose of fluorescent tubes of bulbs yourself.
  • Do not put fluorescent tubes in recycle or waste containers.
  • Submit a work request through Facilities by calling extension 6120. Be sure to leave your name, phone number and location in the building. The lamps will be removed and recycled appropriately.

Furniture, computers, equipment and machinery

Unneeded furniture, computers, equipment and machinery can be stored for future use or disposed of via the Surplus Property Program. Contact the following for removal and pick up services.

  • Computers: Computer Technical Support Services at extension 6627
  • Furniture: Facilities Work Request line at extension 6120.
  • Vehicles or motorized equipment: Motor Pool extension 6354
  • Machinery and non-motorized equipment: Pat Spears at Inventory and Property Surplus, extension 6326


Recycling stations consisting of Mixed Paper, Glass and Plastic and Aluminum and Landfill are located in the A Dorm courtyard, behind the Community Building, in the Mods and in the loop between S & T dorms.

Food scraps are also recycled. Each housing unit is supplied with a compost container to collect food scraps. The scraps are taken to collection stations located by the recycling centers where student works pick them up and take them to the Organic Farm for processing.

Landscape or yard waste

Most campus yard waste is collected by Grounds Maintenance. If you see landscape or yard waste that needs to be collected, call Grounds Maintenance at extension 6349.

Magnetic media (Videotape, computer tape, computer diskettes)

The College does not collect magnetic media for recycling. Departments can contact GreenDisk, a Redmond , WA company that specializes in recycling magnetic media directly at 1-800-305-DISK (3475) or visit their Web site at

Metal scraps (ferrous and nonferrous)

Metal scraps are recycled through the State Surplus program and direct sale to a vendor.. For information or access to the area where metal yard, contact Recycling at extension 6349.


All oil based and some older latex paint must be disposed of as hazardous waste. Newer latex paint can be solidified by filling with an agent such as clumping kitty litter. Contact the Office of Environmental Health and Safety at 867-6111 for instructions on how to dispose of paint used on campus.

Paint from your home or personal use can be disposed of by taking it to the HazoHouse at the Thurston County Landfill. HazoHouse hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m, Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday. The service is free to homeowners. HazoHouse does not accept latex paint. Please dry out unusable latex paint at home and place the dry paint cans in the garbage.

Pallets and Clean Wood Waste

Supplies are sometimes delivered to campus on pallets, or in shipping crates. Clean wood (no paint, oil, styrofoam, or tape) is recyclable. Wood treated with preservatives is not recyclable.

Place clean wood waste in the beige dumpsters located at the Arts Annex and Comm Building loading docks. Wood pallets can be left at the loading dock of any campus building.

Styrofoam Packaging

Styrofoam packaging products are not recycled, but they can be reused. Check with your department to see if there is a central collection point for these products before disposing in the landfill. If you need "peanuts" or other styrofoam packaging materials, call Receiving and Mail at extension 6326 to see if they have extra materials available for your use.

Vehicle batteries, oil, tires, and antifreeze

Vehicle batteries, oil, tires and antifreeze are recycled through the Motor Pool. Contact the Motor Pool at 867-6354 if you have college generated materials that need to be disposed of. Items generated from your personal vehicles may be taken to HazoHouse at the Thurston County Waste and Recovery center at 2420 Hogum Bay Road N.E. HazoHouse is open Friday and Monday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Why Recycle

  • Conserves natural resources.
  • Saves energy
  • Supplies raw materials for industry
  • Creates jobs
  • Can reduce pollution
  • Reduces need for new landfill space and additional incinerators

Recycling turns materials that would otherwise become waste into valuable resources. Some materials like glass and aluminum can be recycled many times. Other materials such as paper and plastic begin to break down on the molecular level , so paper fibers become shorter and can't hold together, glass and plastic molecules become weaker and aren't strong enough to hold together. However, in a process called "down cycling" these materials can be used in different products. For example, plastic bottles can be used in making park benches. composite decking, lawn edging, etc.

Recycling saves energy. Typically the steps in supplying recycled materials to industry (including collection, processing and transportation) use less energy than the steps in supply virgin materials to industry (including extraction, refining, transportation and processing). Additional energy savings accrue in the manufacturing process itself since the materials have already undergone processing.

According to the Pennyslvania Department of Environmental Protection, recycling paper cuts energy usage in half. Every pound of steel recycled saves 5,450 BTUs of energy, enough to light a 60-watt bulb for over 26 hours. Recycling a ton of glass saves the equivalent of nine gallons of fuel oil. Recycling used aluminum cans requires only about five percent of the energy needed to produce aluminum from bauxite. Recycling just one can saves enough electricity to light a 100-watt bulb for 3½ hours.

Recycling is good for the economy. A study by R.W. Beck for the EPA in 2001 indicated that over 950,000 people were employed in the recycling industry and 170,000 people in the reuse industries. Total annual payroll was estimated at nearly 37 billion with a gross of over $236 billion in revenues!

Recycling can reduce pollution. Because much of the energy used in industrial processes and in transportation involves burning fossil fuels like gasoline, diesel and coal which are important sources of carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions, recycling can reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

By decreasing the need to extract and process new raw materials from the earth, recycling can also eliminate the pollution associated with the initial stages of a product's development: material extraction, refining and processing. Further reductions are achieved as a result of energy savings. (source: Pennsylvania Dept of Environmental Protection).

According to EPA statistics, recycling and composting diverted 72 million tons of material away from landfills and incinerators in 2003. This is doubly important because, according to Heather Rogers in an interview about her book Gone Tomorrow: The Hidden Life of Garbage , landfills are a "high tech system that are supposed to protect the environment" but don't do a very good job of it. She says they don't know how much of the landfill gas they actually capture. Half of landfill gas is comprised of methane which is 21 times more heat-trapping than carbon dioxide - a significant global warming threat. She also said that the leachate (liquid that seeps through the waste to the bottom of the landfill - and other toxins are being held in by plastic liners that are not expected to last the 30-50 years originally planned. In her words "We've got these massive landfills all over the country that are environmental time bombs. It's a complete disaster."

Why Recycling is not enough

In his essay "Beyond the Wasteland" Guy Dauncey notes that two thirds of the world's population live in relative or absolute poverty and aspire to an improved standard of living. Americans consume twenty times as much energy and matter as the average third world citizen. So, should we be planning for a world in which our overall planetary resource consumption is 20 times greater than it is today?

Dauncey states that even if 90% of the raw materials came from recycled stock and 90% of the energy came from renewable sources, the remaining 10% would double the amount of energy and raw materials needed to satisfy the needs of the, along with the volume of non-recyclable wastes.

In a study "Metal Stocks and Sustainability" published in the Proceedings of the Academy of Sciences , researchers determined that supplies of copper, zinc and other metals, even if recycled, may not meet the needs of the population forever. Scare metals, such as platinum, risk depletion in this century because there is no suitable substitute for use in devices such as catalytic converters and hydrogen fuel cells.

Heather Rogers puts the situation this way. "Recycling is the last line of defense. It's a waste treatment method that deals with waste after it's already been made, so it doesn't do anything to stem waste production in the first place, which is what we need to be talking about." She says part of the solution is to go into the realm of production and say, "You can't make toxic waste, you must make products that are easy to fix, that last longer, that aren't designed to break quickly.

In a waste prevention forum sponsored by Harper's magazine, forum panelists stressed that we must look beyond basic recycling to three further solutions: " waste prevention - making less waste in the first place, extending the life of the material and recovering value in the material." Winston Porter, President, Waste Policy Center , noted that we recycle about 23% of our trash. To recycle more of the mixed materials - of which only one or two percent is recoverable - is "probably very expensive and probably not worth the effort, and you might have more negative environmental impact than positive."

The EPA suggests producing less waste by practicing "the three R's":

  • Reduce the amount and toxicity of trash you discard.
  • Reuse containers and products, repair what is broken or give it to someone who can repair it.
  • Recycle as much as possible, which includes buying products with recycled content.

House made from bottles