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Recycling and Waste Management

Recycling and Waste Management

Trash and Recycling Initiatives at SMU

  • The University uses single stream recycling in offices, which means all recyclable waste goes into the same container — lined with clear plastic. Recyclables include paper, aluminum cans, plastic containers and tin cans.
  • The University has implemented a landscaping and wood recycling program that collects construction wood, pallets, and landscape material. This product is diverted from the landfill by being recycled as compost or landscaping mulch.
  • The University has a recycling program for ink and toner cartridges. Full information on this program here.
  • The University recycles used batteries, light bulbs, and ballasts.
  • The University's Office of Information Technology (OIT) collects unusable or obsolete computers. Contact the Help Desk at for pickup.

Sustainable Custodial Initiatives at SMU

  • The University has mandated that all custodial contractors use Green Seal Certified chemicals.
  • The University has converted to roll paper towel products made with 40% recycled material.  In locations where roll towels could not be implemented, we use a 100% recycle content multi-fold hand towels. Both products are Green Seal Certified.
  • The University has begun to utilize Blue Cleaning which eliminates the use of chemicals by using electronically activated water (EAW) to clean. The SMU Custodial team uses the EAW to clean most surfaces on campus. It is the most environmentally friendly approach to cleaning.
  • The University has switched to a Green Seal Certified coreless toilet tissue made with 20% recycle material. Elimination of the roll core and the decrease in packing material reduces the amount of waste going to the landfill.   
  • The University has converted to high density liners in waste receptacles due to "source reduction" policies. Source reduction is considered the best green option - and is based on consuming fewer raw materials, less energy, less required packaging and lower material handling cost.  Source reduction reduces the amount of waste that is placed in landfills by the manufacturer.
  • The University conducted an audit to properly size the liners for trash and recycle containers, thus eliminating the unnecessary usage of oversized bags.