The Recycling Program (PDF) started in 1989 and is coordinated through the Division of Facilities. Grants from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE), Alcoa, Pepsi, Coca Cola, and City/University funds made it possible to purchase recycling equipment, such as trailers, a side-load collection truck, collection bins, carts, and balers to process the material.
In 1998, the K-State Recycling Committee was formed, comprised of faculty, staff, student and Division of Facilities representatives. The committee's goal is to help expand recycling efforts across the campus and by doing so, create a more environmentally friendly campus, minimize the waste stream and decrease waste management costs.
In 2008, the former Wind Erosion Research building was damaged by a tornado and in 2012 became the new K-State Recycling Center.
Waste vs Recycling - Where are We?
In 2012, K-State hauled 5,712,980 lbs (2,856.49 tons) of materials as waste to the landfill and processed 833,606 lbs of recyclables. This means that we recycled only 12.73% of the items we threw away. The cost to landfill amounted to $160,786.92, excluding cost of transportation. Conclusion? We need to recycle more! A lot more.
One Stop Drop - Going Single-Stream
In the spring of 2013, K-State is implementing a single-stream recycling system to facilitate recycling on campus. This will be a huge improvement as recyclables do not have to be sorted by the people who generate them and, hopefully, it will entice more participation.
Since 2009, K-State participates in the national RecycleMania competition. K-State placed 138/256 in 2014, with a recycling rate of 27.36% over the 8-week competition period. For comparison, the winner, Antioch University, Seattle, posted a recycling rate of 93.1%. Go to the RecycleMania page for more information and results.