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Rams and Recycling: Tonnage report and tips for recycling

02.13.2020 | By: Texas Wesleyan University
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Texas Wesleyan's sustainability efforts

For the last quarter of the year, the university averaged 2.1 tons of recycling a month. With that, Texas Wesleyan recycled 21 tons of recycling material in total for 2019.

Not only did we manage to increase our recycling, but by the end of the year, Texas Wesleyan decreased the amount of trash going to landfills. Our tonnage of refuse materials for the last quarter was the lowest it’s been in the two years we’ve been able to track.

Our diversion rate increased from 2% at the beginning of the year to 5% of materials by the end of the year. Let’s keep that momentum going forward in 2020!

Five things that can’t be recycled:

  1. Paper towels: Paper towels cannot be recycled because the fibers in paper towels are too short to be reused.
  2. Coffee cups: The wax that lines the inside of coffee cups prevents them from being recyclable.
  3. Pizza boxes: Pizza boxes, although made from cardboard, are often contaminated with grease and cheese.
  4. Plastic bags: Plastic bags cannot go into single stream recycling because they tangle up the sorting machine. This includes trash bags. (Pro tip: many grocery stores offer plastic bag recycling.)
  5. Mixed material packaging: Mixed material packaging that combines cardboard and plastic (such as the packages that small electronics come in) can’t be recycled unless each material is separated.
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