Frequently Asked Questions

 


Please explain the recycling system at Skidmore.

Our system is designed to make this as easy as possible for students without breaking fire codes with massive quantities of bins. It's also designed to be similar to recycling at home. If you live in a room, bring it to the kitchen. If you live in a house, bring it to the doorstep. Just like at home.

Academic Buildings: drop your waste in one of the three bins, trash, glass/metal/plastic, or paper. It's collected at night by a custodian, brought to a main accumulation dumpster, and taken to the appropriate facilities by a vendor.

Dorms: Bring recyclables to the kitchen, either as you use them, or set up your own bin system in your room. Collected at night by a custodian, brought to an accumulation area downstairs, taken away in our new trash and recycling truck, brought to the accumulation area, and finally taken to the appropriate facility by a vendor.

Scribner and Northwoods: Curbside pickup in the red (glass/metal/plastic) or gray (paper) bins. Use the paper bin's lid to keep it dry. Collected on designated days by our new truck, taken to the accumulation area, and finally to the appropriate facilities by a vendor.

Listen to members of Facilities Services and Recycling Coordinator, Alex Hanson talk about the new recycling program.


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What can/cannot be recycled at Skidmore?

Please refer to the 3Ws Guide.

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How clean do things need to be?

All paper and cardboard needs to be completely dry and clean, otherwise it gets sent to the landfill. For plastics, metal and glass, don't go nuts, but too much food on recyclables does turn them into trash. Don't go at it with a toothbrush and dish soap, but a good rinse is important. Just don't have lots of food on your recycling.

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What time and where should I put my recycling out for collection?

Please refer to the 3Ws Guide.

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I lost/destroyed my collection bin and/or lid. HELP!

Report it using the Contact section of the website, or call facilities at 5860. We'd be glad to replace it.

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I heard that recycling doesn't make environmental or economic sense. Is this true?

No.  Environmentally, recycling uses less raw materials and creates less waste.  The most commonly used methods for waste disposal may be environmentally damaging and unsustainable. Therefore any way to reduce the volume of waste being disposed in this fashion may be beneficial.  Economically, recycling decreases the cost of manufacturing because recycled materials are purer, and less energy is needed to process them or transport them from their point of origin.  Since materials like glass and aluminum can be recycled indefinitely as there is no change to the materials, the savings in cost is substantial. 

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What does the recycling get made into?

Generally speaking, aluminum comes back as the same products it was in the first place. Glass is made into various glass products or sandblasting powder. Fine paper comes back as either fine paper or toilet and tissue paper. Newspaper is turned into more newspaper, boxboard or insulation. Mixed papers (all of the above plus boxboard and glossy) come back as boxboard, egg cartons and those crazy paperboard packing blocks. Plastics are sorted according to resin, and depending on the type, can turn into plastic piping, carpet, cushion stuffing, plastiwood, non-food-grade bottles, and trash or recycling cans. Cardboard comes back as cardboard, boxboard, and biodegradable flower pots.

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Why should I buy recycled products?

Our community's responsibility to recycle properly is only one step of the process. Recycling has not actually taken place until we buy or use products made from recycled materials. By purchasing recycled products, you are creating a market for the materials you throw in the recycle bins.


Thanks to increased demand for recycled goods, there are now more than 4,500 recycled-content products available. Be on the lookout for recycled versions of products you buy, especially the everyday items that you use the most, like toilet paper rolls or printing paper.


You can now purchase many recycled and environmentally friendly products at the Skidshop. Please look out for the tags that say "The Skidshop Takes the Environment to Heart."

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Does Skidmore buy recycled products?

Yes. The toilet paper that is freely dispersed in Scribner and the Northwoods (see your RA) contains 100% recycled content. The bathrooms around campus offer toilet paper as well as paper towels that are made with recycled content. All of the printer paper on campus is 30% recycled paper.

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Why is it important to recycle?

When an item isn't recycled, it becomes waste, piled up or buried and ultimately never put to good use again.  Recycling allows us to avoid constantly using raw materials by finding new uses for previously used resources.  Recycling helps to saves space by reusing what would otherwise be sent to landfills.  Waste/landfills can cause a wide degree of environmental problems, including the release of methane gas, (which contributes to climate change/global warming) the contamination of water and soil, and the presence of excess dust, unpleasant odor, and noise pollution.  Since recycling reduces the amount of wasted material, it reduces the extent of environmental harm done by landfills.  Lastly, it's important to recycle because, it's easy to put of cans, bottles and paper in their own disposal bins, and given the range of benefits, there's no good reason not to! 

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