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Indiana University


We are pleased to announce that IUB will soon provide weekly desk-side recycling pick-up in administrative buildings and academic offices.  In the coming weeks, offices on the IUB campus will receive new blue desk-side recycling bins with hanging sidecar containers for trash, replacing current desk-side trashcans.  

What to put in the bin:

Desk-side recycling containers accept mixed recyclables, including:

     *Paper (Yes: mixed office paper, junk mail, newspapers; No: tissues or paper with food on it.)
     *Aluminum cans
     *Plastics 1-7

When possible, we encourage you to place aluminum, glass and plastics 1-7 in the area bins provided in your building.

     For details of what you can recycle at IUB,  click here.

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Label your bin:

You are welcome (but not required) to print a recycling label for your desk-side bin. Here's how:

  1. Order Avery labels, available from the EPIC vendor Guy Brown or local office supply stores
    • Product code is A55526 ("Avery Weatherproof Durable White Labels")
    • The labels should be 2 per sheet (each label is 5.5" x 8.5")
  2. Download desk-side label template by clicking here >>
    • Label template is a Word document.  No special software required!
  3. Print using your own printer and place your new labels on your desk-side recycling bins.

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Frequently asked questions:

Will plastic liners be provided for the small black hanging trash containers? 

No.  In order to reduce  the amount of waste going to the landfill, to reduce the cost of purchasing the bags, and to reduce the cost of labor required to replace the bags, we have opted not to use plastic liners for the small black trash containers attached to the desk-side bin.  

We recommend for items such as apple cores, banana skins, or other food products that you dispose of them in the larger tan trash containers that are typically located in the office complex and/or public area.  Those tan containers will have liners and are emptied on a daily basis.  One reason these small black containers were chosen was that they could be easily taken to a restroom and washed out at the discretion of the user if they are used for the disposal of food stuffs.

Some people who have similar concerns have brought small plastic bags from home to use in these black containers.  These typically are bags that the grocery and other retail stores provide when you shop at their stores.  This idea seems to work well.-

Our pilot study at the Service building showed that once the user acclimated to the new containers these concerns were not a significant issue.  Keep in mind that the Building Services group will continue to empty the blue recycling container and the black trash container on a once a week basis.

How can I get a label for my desk-side recycling bin?

Click here to learn how to label your bin.

What can I put in my desk-side recycling container?

Click here for a list of items allowed in the desk-side bins.

Why did IU start the desk-side recycling program?

Prior to expanding the desk-side recycling program across the IUB campus, staff conducted a pilot project in the Service Building to assess viability and found that desk-side recycling increased Service Building recycling rates 22% over baseline.  As it costs the university significantly less to recycle materials than to send them to the landfill, desk-side recycling is a cost-effective way for IUB to be a better steward of our natural resources.

How can I get involved in other ways to make my office space and operations more environmentally-friendly?

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Learn about the desk-side pilot:

In order to support user education for the IU desk-side recycling program, the IUOS No Waste program sent an anonymous survey to Service Building staff on April 13, 2011.  At the time these staff members received the survey, all Service Building staff had been participating in a desk-side recycling pilot program since February 28, 2011.  Many thanks to the 39 Service Building staff who responded to our request for input from desk-side recycling bin users.

The responses to this survey were instrumental in designing an effective university-wide desk-side recycling program.  Because of comments received about the pilot project, optional desk-side recycling label templates are available through the No Waste program. 

  • Click here to download the summary results for the survey
  • Click here to access recycling data pre- and post-pilot

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Give us feedback:

Questions, comments or concern about IUB's desk-side recycling program can be directed to

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