Sustainability - Waste
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Recycling at Wartburg

To help you reduce your contribution to the landfill, we have provided easily accessible recycling stations next to each residence hall and in every academic building. The college partners with the City of Waverly to recycle the following items. We hope that you take the time to find one of the multiple recycling stations close to you.

Your impact is bigger than you realize.


Single-stream items include paper, plastic, and metal. These items will go into the big blue bins that are provided by the city, and thus will be collected by the city. The following is a list of items accepted in single stream.

  • Plastic #1-7 (no bags or styrofoam)
  •  Paper (white, colored, glossy, newspaper, magazines)
  •  Metal (tin, steel, aluminum)
  •  Cans (tin and aluminum)
  •  Plastic bottles and containers
  •  Redeemable containers (bottles and cans)*
  •  Cardboard (broken down)

*Redeemables: containers which contain alcohol or carbonation are considered a redeemable, which can be given to "Cans for a Cause" by placing it in the redeemable recycling containers.

Items NOT accepted in single-stream:

  •  Glass
  •  Food waste and food soiled containers
  •  Plastic bags and packaging
  •  Waxy paper products
  •  Plastic food service containers
  •  Food wrappers and bags
  •  Tissue, paper towels, and napkins
  •  Mixed material items (milk cartons, etc.)
  •  Styrofoam
  •  E-waste

Recycling in Dining

A portion of to-go containers from Wartburg Dining can be recycled, IF they are clean, not soiled with grease or wet food. The following non-soiled, empty items can be placed in the single-stream recycling containers provided in retail dining areas:

  •  Paper boats
  •  Paper bowls
  •  Wartburg coffee cups (paper)
  •  Paper bags
  •  Plastic cups

Where to Recycle

  •  Academic & Business Buildings: You will find recycling stations on nearly every floor in each building across campus.
  •  Residence Halls: There are recycling stations accessible to every residence hall on Wartburg’s campus. In Grossman and Löhe the recycling stations are on each floor. In The Residence they are outside the lounge. In all other halls they are located outside near the dumpsters. Click here for a map of residence hall recycling station locations.

Electronic Waste Recycling

Electronic waste are all those product that are powered by electricity, this includes, cell phones, laptops, cables, As part of the recycling program, Wartburg offers the collection of electronic materials.

  •  Computers
  •  Laptops
  •  Mice and keyboards
  •  Servers
  •  Monitors
  •  Copiers
  •  Printers
  •  Paper shredders
  •  Cell phones
  •  Network equipment

Cans for a Cause

Cans for a Cause is a program that gives student organizations around Wartburg College an opportunity to help with campus sustainability while earning money for their organization. Student groups volunteer to sort redeemable cans from around campus and in return the student organization will receive the deposits from the cans. All coordination is lead through the Volunteer Action Center.

What about the "other" stuff?

Some items are not accepted in recycling bins around campus, but they can still be recycled in the Waverly area. The list below provides locations for recycling additional items used on Wartburg's campus.

  •  Ink cartridges: Cartridges can be dropped at the ITS office, located in the Communication and Technology Center.
  •  Non-rechargeable batteries: Unfortunately, there is no way at this time to recycle this type of battery.

Not from Wartburg and want to learn where to recycle at home? Visit www.earth911.com for a national database of recycling.

Each year, unwanted office supplies are donated to local thrift stores, recycled, or thrown away. REUSE(D) is the Sustainability Office’s effort to keep gently used office supplies in the Wartburg Community. The room is open to students, faculty, and staff. Wartburg community members can pick up supplies free of charge.

  •  Give: Collect unwanted, gently used office supplies from your office/room. E-mail sustainability@wartburg.edu to arrange a time to pick/drop off the items or stop by the office during open hours. The Sustainability Office will sort and shelf items.
  •  Receive: Before buying new, stop by the REUSE(D) room to see if the item you are looking for has been donated. Take supplies that you need free of charge! If you find you don’t need them, simply return them.

What we Collect

The below list is not comprehensive, just ideas. If you have items that are not listed we encourage you to bring them to the Sustainability Office. If we think the item has the potential to be reused we will shelf it. If not, the Sustainability Office will make sure that it is recycled, donated to a local thrift store, or disposed in a manner that will have minimal effect on our environment

  •  Binders
  •  Notebooks
  •  Folders
  •  Staplers and Tape dispensers
  •  Scissors
  •  Three hole punchers
  •  Staples and tape
  •  Pens and pencils
  •  Envelopes
  •  Office organizers
  •  Markers, crayons and colored pencils
  •  Paper clips, rubber bands and pins

Waste Reduction

  •  Bring your own, either a bottle or cup for drinking or silverware to eat in the Den.
  •  Participate in eco challenges, events and clubs on campus.
  •  Ask for 100 percent recycled paper at the print center.
  •  Buy school supplies, like refillable or EarthWrite recycled pencils, recycled folders, notebooks, etc.
  •  When planning your campus events follow the “Sustainable Event Planning Guide.”
  •  Sign up to “Be Green Certified” with the Sustainability Office to learn more about your solid waste.


What is recycling?

Wartburg College has acquired a compromise with sustainability. To achieve this goal we recognize the importance of recycling. Recycling consist on taking a material and using a prime material in the making of a new product. It is important because it reduces the pressure on natural resources and reduces the space required in landfills. 

Think about an every day product like paper, it generally comes from trees and once its lifetime is over, it goes to a landfill. This creates a linear system where we lose resources and get trash. Thus, one of the solutions is clearly to reintroduce as much as possible discarded materials to the system.

What are Redeemable containers?
Some products come in containers that are redeemable. According to the law of 14 states, including Iowa, every time someone buys certain products, they are paying a $0.05 deposit, that can be redeemed if they return the container. In Iowa this applies to all beverages that are carbonated or contain alcohol.

The Bottle Bill law was created as a way to promote recycling, and it has indeed brought very positive results. Not all the containers are redeemable, check the label.