Campus Sustainability Office

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Current Recycling System

This recycling system is called "Single Stream Recycling," which accepts paper, plastic, glass, and metal products.  However please follow the Recycling Guide's "Dos and Donts" to know which specific items can and cannot be recycled at UW Oshkosh, as well as best practices for doing so.

What to Recycle 

(Please rinse/clean out all metal, plastic, and glass products before placing them into recycling bins)


(Place LOOSE inside recycling bins)

  • Newspapers and advertisement inserts 
  • Books (hard and soft cover)
  • Paper bags (e.g., brown grocery bags)
  • Magazines and catalogs
  • Corrugated cardboard (flatten, place large boxes beside bins)
  • Pizza boxes as long as they do not contain large globs of food (grease or sauce stains are fine) 
  • Office paper (printer/copier of all colors) and paper cards (e.g., greeting cards)
  • Junk mail and envelopes (envelopes with windows are okay)
  • Beverage packs (e.g., soda and beer 6/12/24 packs)
  • Paperboard products (e.g., cereal boxes, tissue boxes and notepad backs)
  • Cardboard tubes 
  • Paper cups used for fountain beverages and coffee (such as those from Reeve) without lids and straws
  • File folders (remove metal hangers from hanging type folders)
  • Shredded paper (contained in a paper bag stapled shut)
  • Aluminum cans
  • Aerosol spray cans (without plastic nozzle)
  • Metal cans (e.g., food cans) including tin, steel, and bi-metal
  • Metal lids from glass bottles and jars 3 inches in diameter or larger

(Lids larger than 4" can be recycled separately, while lids smaller than this should be screwed onto the empty bottle they came with. This prevents small plastic objects from falling through machinery and contaminating the glass recycling process going on below! Please take the time to empy out your container prior to placing it in the recycling bin.)

  • Bottles
  • Jars 
  • Jugs 
  • Cartons 
  • All Plastic Containers
    • Milk and Cream cartons
    • Produce containers
    • Deli containers 
    • Dairy containers
Plastic Bags/Wrap/Film

Special cardboard bins are scattered around campus for collecting clean plastic bags, wrap, and film. UW Oshkosh accepts the following items:

  • Shopping bags (e.g., from grocery stores) 
  • Plastic wrap (e.g., included in packaging)
  • Other pliable plastic film (see note below)
Note: to determine whether or not the plastic film you have is recyclable through campus, hold the plastic taught in both hands and press on the plastic with your thumb. If it stretches, then campus can accept it. 
Bins are located in:
  • Dempsey Hall (second floor, near Administrative Services)
  • Halsey Science Center (first floor, near Biology offices)
  • Polk Library (main entrance)
  • Reeve Union (near Bookstore)
  • Sage Hall (first floor, parking lot entrance and third floor faculty offices)
  • Clow (near MiTaza and Nursing faculty offices)

(Metal caps larger than 3 inches in diameter can be recycled, but must be removed from containers)

  • Bottles 
  • Jars 
Do NOT Recycle

(Unfortunately at this time we are unable to recycle these items. Please throw away with your other landfill-bound waste.)

  • Pizza boxes that contain chunks of food (e.g., stuck on cheese; those that have only grease on them are okay to recycle)
  • Personal hygiene paper products (e.g., facial tissues) However, you CAN recycle the boxes or plastic that these products come in!
  • Frozen food boxes
  • Paper with food on it (although you may be able to compost it!)
  • Styrofoam containers and packaging materials
  • Containers that held motor oil, brake fluid, transmission fluid, pesticides, paint or other hazardous/flammable materials
  • Window glass or kitchen glass, drinking glasses, canning jars, glass baking dishes
  • Ceramic plant flats and pots (although the UW Oshkosh Community Garden or Growing Oshkosh may be able to use them! Contact to arrange a pickup/drop-off)
  • Light bulbs
  • Aluminum foil and aluminum cooking trays
  • Plastic bags, film, wrapping cannot be recycled in the regular bins. We do have special bins around campus, however for recycling pliable plastic bags and wrap. Click here for info about how to recycle these types of plastics.

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