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Learn Do’s and Don’ts of UW and Laramie Recycling Programs

January 24, 2022

Members of the University of Wyoming community have the opportunity to recycle many waste materials in Laramie, but there are differences in the university’s on-campus recycling program and the program operated by the city of Laramie.

UW students and employees are encouraged to become familiar with the details of the two recycling programs so that they can operate effectively and efficiently.

“We often see a sharp increase in recycling contamination, both on and off campus, at the beginning of the semester,” say Shannon Bendtsen, a UW student who works part time for the city as a recycling intern, and UW Campus Sustainability Committee outreach and communications intern Luke Foering. “We encourage our new students and residents to learn the do’s and don’ts of recycling in Laramie so that they can participate in an optimal fashion.”

Here are the details of the two programs:

Off Campus

Laramie’s single-stream recycling and diversion programs recycled and diverted over 14.1 million pounds of materials in 2021. Single-stream recycling means you do not need to sort recycled items in your brown 96-gallon cart with the blue lid.

Acceptable items for curbside pickup include unbagged: junk mail; newspaper; office/school paper; books/magazines; clean/unwaxed food boxes/boxboard; aseptic/gable-top cartons; plastic screw-top bottles/jugs/jars No. 1 and No. 2 (cap either attached or thrown away); cardboard (flattened and cut to 2- by 2-foot pieces); metal cans; and aluminum foil/trays.

Glass and e-waste recycling are offered to all of Albany County, free of charge, at the recycling drop-off located at 162 Roger Canyon Road.

If it’s not on the acceptable items list, do not put it into the recycling bin. Any questionable items can be searched using the Laramie waste and recycling app, the “Goes Where?” recycling tool or on the city website For further information, call (307) 721-5279.

On Campus

The UW campus does not practice single-stream recycling as the Laramie community does. Around campus, there are recycling zones coupled with trash cans. These recycling areas are made for organizing recycling into mixed paper, bottles, cans, corrugated cardboard and poster/pressboard.

Mixed-paper recycling bins often have a long rectangular disposal hole for paper waste. Acceptable paper recycling in paper bins includes printer paper, newspapers, books and shredded paper. These bins are labeled “paper recycling.”

Bottle and cans often can be recycled in the same bin -- certain campus locations have separate bins for each of these. At bins labeled “bottles and cans,” each item can be disposed of in the same bin; when bins are labeled separately, dispose of each with its corresponding label. Plastic items should be identified as No. 1 or No. 2 to be recycled.

There are outdoor bins across campus that have slots to dispose of corrugated cardboard and poster/pressboard. Locations of outdoor bins include, but are not limited to: Student Health Service, Coe Library, the Wyoming Union, the Visual Arts Building, Knight Hall and the Michael B. Enzi STEM Facility.

Ink cartridges can be recycled by leaving them next to recycling bins on campus.

UW does not recycle glass, plastic utensils, wax-lined boxes and Styrofoam.

Email or call (307) 766-3590 if you have further questions.

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Institutional Communications

Bureau of Mines Building, Room 137


Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307) 766-2929


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