Recycling: Make a Difference Every Day

Recycling

It's a choice we make every day: toss the paper in the trash or in a recycling container. Actually, when you think about it we're pretty lucky to have that choice at Vol State. The Recycling Committee has been working hard to get office paper recycling back on campus. If you don't have a green recycle container for your office yet, be sure to contact maintenance to get one.

There are plenty of other ways to ecycle on campus. To clear up any confusion Le-Ellen Dayhuff and the Recycling Committee put this guide together. Cans, some plastic, paper and even ink cartridges can all be recycled.

Why recycle?

  • Contribute to the Recycling Scholarship fund
  • Reduce landfill trash (paper is the number one item in landfills, followed by plastic)
  • Conserve energy by supporting the reuse of materials

Recycling Scholarship

  • The winner is awarded $500 in the fall semester with possible renewal for spring

How to recycle at VSCC

Bins on campus

Please do NOT put trash in recycle bins

Aluminum Cans

  • Please empty cans completely
  • Place all cans used on campus in the provided containers
  • Take cans from home to trailer next to Fox Maintenance Building
  • Cans contribute the most money to Recycling Scholarship

Paper

  • Place all clean dry paper in a paper recycle bin in your office or hallway
  • PLEASE DO NOT place cardboard or gray board in the paper recycle bins
  • If you know you will have a large amount of paper to recycle, please contact Dana Byrd for a larger container ortake it directly to the paper recycle container outside the cafeteria.
  • If you consistently place trash in your office paper recycle bin, then your paper recycle bin may be removed.

Ink cartridges

Ink catridge bin
  • Please place ink cartridges in the marked container in the bookstore

Plastic

Look on the bottom of the bottle
  • Look for triangle on bottom of item
  • If there is a 1 or 2 in the middle of triangle, then VSCC can recycle it
  • Please do NOT put recyclable plastics other than 1 or 2 in VSCC plastic recycle bins

So, how do you know what plastics you can recycle? Flip over the bottle or container and look for the recycling symbol and a number. The number determines if you can recycle the plastic here at Vol State. We currently take two types.

Plastic #1: PolyethyleneTerephthalate (PETE)

PETE Symbol

Common uses: 2 liter soda bottles, cooking oil bottles, peanut butter jars. This is the most widely recycled plastic and often has redemption value under the California "Bottle Bill."

Plastic #2: High Density Polyethylene (HDPE)

HDPE Symbol

Common uses: detergent bottles, milk jugs. PET is typically clear, though it can be green (think Mountain Dew bottles) I collected some samples over the course of a couple weeks - see for yourself:

Why is this Important?

If we can't reduce our consumption or reuse old bottles, our last green resort is to recycle them. Keeping materials out of the landfill is one of the easiest ways to reduce our footprint, yet so many bottles wind up in the trash.

In 2006, the U.S. consumed 60 billion PET beverage bottles but only recycled 10 billion. Consumption is going up, while recycling rates are actually going down - we can do better. Plus, PET can be used to make all kinds of goodies like tote bags, new PET containers for both food and non-food products, fabric, shoes, luggage, carpet, luggage racks, door panels, and more.

For more information about recycling at Vol State contact Le-Ellen Dayhuff at Le-Ellen.Dayhuff@volstate.edu