Zero Waste

UCI defines zero waste as diverting 90% or more of campus municipal solid waste from landfills, which makes the amount of waste produced from the university as close to zero as possible with today’s current diversion mechanics. UCI has led with its recycling, composting, and reuse programs to eliminate waste and maintain ~80% diversion rates the past few years. More information about zero waste efforts can be found at Facilities Management.

According to UC Policy on Sustainable Practices, UCI must reduce municipal solid waste generation by 25% per capita by 2025 and 50% by 2030 (based on data from 2015). UCI must also reduce and then eliminate single-use items.

Single-Use Plastics Policy

All UC campuses are beginning to phase out single-use plastics as part of the zero waste requirement in the UC Policy on Sustainable Practices. Each campus must transition away from plastic bags in retail and dining locations. Departments must also phase out single-use plastic purchases

Styrofoam, Battery, and Ink Recycling

UCI has a small-scale styrofoam recycling program for hard-to-recycle styrofoam packaging commonly found in our labs. UCI also has battery and ink recycling for campus members, and more information can be found here.

four people standing next to a large orange donation bin

Donation Bins

UCI Student Housing hosts donation bins across all housing communities. Anyone can donate clothing, dishes, silverware, small electronics, houseware, books, select bedding, and towels at any time through the year. For specific locations and information on the Move Out Donation Drive go here.

Zero Waste at UCI

Are you curious about how the three-bin system works at UCI? Would it be helpful to have a visual explainer? Watch this video to learn more about how to utilize a waste separation site.