Waste & Recycling

Sam the Minuteman standing in front of the compost, trash and recycling bins in Blue Wall. He gives the camera a thumbs up as he puts his compostable to-go container into the compost bin.

Plastics Reduction

UMass has over 243 (and counting!) indoor reusable water bottle stations, has complied with the Town of Amherst plastic bag ban since January 2017 (also known as Article 36: Single Use Plastic Bag Ban Prohibition) and offers outdoor event water stations in an effort to reduce single use plastic bottles.


A national competition that runs from the beginning of February to the end of March that helps colleges and universities advance campus recycling and waste reduction efforts.


UMass Amherst composts over 1,500 tons of food waste each year making it the largest recycling stream on campus. 

Electronic Waste Recycling

The university has options to recycle broken small electronics, wires, florescent light bulbs, batteries and printer ink cartridges. 

Green Events

Many organizations and departments on campus are working on ways to reduce their environmental impact at events they host by striving for zero waste. 

Green Office Program

The on-campus Green Office Program encourages and facilitates energy and waste reduction practices, and gives students an opportunity to be leaders in campus sustainability. 

Single Stream Recycling

The university uses Single Stream Recycling, which requires that bottles, can, paper, and cardboard all go in one bin. 

Paper Reduction and Purchasing

The university is working to reduce paper waste and purchase more sustainable products.

Surplus Property Barn (SPB)

The Surplus Property Barn (SPB) acts as a showroom for unwanted but still useable equipment and furniture from all over the campus. Any University department may obtain surplus property for on-campus use.

New2U Sustainable Move In & Out​

The New2U program collects unwanted items each spring during move-out and resells these collected items each fall during a one day move-in tag sale. (Not taking place in academic year 2020/2021 due to COVID-19 precautions. Check this page for updates.) 

Solid Waste Reports

The Office of Waste Management continually tracks the recycling and refuse data for the campus.