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What can you recycle at Calvin College?

Paper: Newspaper, magazines, notebooks, cardstock, general office paper, paper-back books.

Cardboard:Corrugated and non-corrugated cardboard. Non-corrugated includes cereal and tissue boxes, etc. Remove plastic linings and make sure there is not any food contamination. Please flatten and set beside recycling bins, or bring directly to the physical plant.

Plastics: All containers from Johnny’s, silverware, yogurt containers, milk jugs, water, and shampoo bottles, detergent bottles, grocery bags (#2 and #4), microwave food trays, plant flats and flower pots (if they are too broken to be given to Calvin’s greenhouse), any other containers stamped 1-7. Remove caps and rinse plastic out whenever possible.  Make sure excess food is removed whenever possible.

Glass: Clear glass, fish bowls, glass cups. Rinse out glass containers and remove caps and plastic rings.

Cans: Aluminum cans, food cans. Cans that have a deposit should be returned for cash before they are recycled. If possible please rinse and flatten food cans.

Batteries: Accepted at all dorm front desks and at the physical plant.

Electronics: Calvin recycles its own electronic equipment and that of resident students. You can take them to the physical plant.

Light bulbs: Give them to your building maintenance supervisor.

Items that cannot be recycled include:  Styrofoam (including packing peanuts), tissues, paper towels, napkins, tissue paper, paper/cardboard contaminated with food, carbon copy paper, aerosol cans.

Styrofoam: (the white molded packaging type) can be placed by - not in - the trash. It will follow the trash stream, but get separated in the recycle building.

Packing peanuts will be accepted at Mail/Print for re-use.

Carbon copy paper: the paper is fine. However, if it is the old kind with the carbon sheet, that sheet needs to be removed.

Items that cannot be recycled include: Tissues, napkins, paper towels, styrofoam trays, egg cartons are not recyclable in Kent County and must be put in the trash. Paper and cardboard contaminated with food is trash. A little bit of food is ok. Use a napkin to clean the plate and then recycle it.

Aerosol cans need to be empty before placing them in the glass/metal/plastic bin.

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Calvin Facts:

  • Calvin recycles over 120 tons of paper and over 30 tons of iron from renovation projects and broken furniture each year.
  • Calvin landfills almost 300 tons of trash per year.
  • Calvin sends almost 600 tons of trash to the city of Grand Rapids incinerator each year.
  • Sixty multi-bin recycling units were placed around campus in spring 2008.  In the first month the amount of recycled products nearly doubled.