Waste reduction mitigates the need to extract virgin materials from the earth, such as trees and metals. Reducing the generation of waste reduces the flow of waste to incinerators and landfills which produce greenhouse gas emissions, can contaminate air and groundwater supplies, and tend to have disproportionate negative impacts on low-income communities. Source reduction and waste diversion also save institutions costly landfill and hauling service fees. In addition, waste reduction campaigns can engage the entire campus community in contributing to a tangible sustainability goal.

Featured Resources

604 resources

Iowa State University Recycling and Sustainability Program

  • Iowa State University (IA)

The purpose of our project was to create a more sustainable living environment for students living on campus. The effort included creating a convenient, easy to use department wide recycling ...

  • Posted June 30, 2010
  • Case Studies
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Harvard Medical School Reusable Sharps Container Pilot

  • Harvard University (MA)

In collaboration with Harvard Medical School (HMS) Campus Operations, Environmental Health & Safety, and the Office for Sustainability, two large research buildings constituting HMS' 'North Campus' have fully transitioned from ...

  • Posted June 30, 2010
  • Case Studies
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Implementing Vermicomposting in Luther College Residence Halls

  • Luther College (IA)

Luther students have started disposing of fruit and vegetable waste in worm composting bins installed in seven of Luther's residence halls by students from the Luther Sustainability program.

Students ...

  • Posted June 30, 2010
  • Case Studies
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Centralized Recycling Pilot at NYU Stern

  • New York University (NY)

The NYU Stern Campus Greening Initiative, Facilities, Recycling, Sustainability Office and Green Grants teams partnered to run a pilot project aimed at increasing the volume of recycled material at the ...

  • Posted June 30, 2010
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This tab provides access to data collected through AASHE’s Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS). STARS is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance. STARS enables meaningful comparisons over time and across institutions using a common set of measurements developed with broad participation from the campus sustainability community. Additional content and advanced benchmarking tools will be added to this tab over time.

Programs and Initiatives

The following links connect to specific Content Displays on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).


The following link connects to the Score Display on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).

Waste Partners

Pharos Systems International

Rochester, NY
Business Leader
A certified B Corp, Pharos helps universities reveal wasteful habits and hidden costs making campus printing less expensive, more mindful, and more sustainable.

Busch Systems

Barrie, ON
Business Supporter


Sandy Springs, GA
Business Supporter

CleanRiver Recycling Solutions

Aurora, ON
Business Affiliate
We design and manufacture containers to specifically suit your needs and then help you implement facility-wide programs that achieve your waste diversion goals and generate recycling program ROI.

Landmark Studio & Design

Muskego, WI
Business Affiliate

LRP Recycling

Framingham, MA
Business Affiliate


Sussex, WI
Business Affiliate
Max-R is the innovator of the customized waste and recycling bin.

Post Landfill Action Network

Dover, NH
Business Affiliate
The Post-Landfill Action Network cultivates, educates, and inspires the student-led zero waste movement. We inform students about the waste crisis and equip them with the necessary skills and resources to implement solutions to waste on their campus.


Ann Arbor, MI
Business Affiliate
RRS is a sustainability and recycling consulting firm that possess core strengths in recovery, organics and collaborative action development serving both public and private sectors.

Textbooks for Change

Toronto, ON
Business Affiliate
Textbooks for Change sustainably provides educational material to those both locally and abroad.

The Campus Kitchens Project

Washington, DC
Business Affiliate
Empowering students to create innovative and sustainable solutions to food waste and hunger.