Recycling & Waste Diversion

CSU Recycling

CSU has a single stream recycling system that accepts metals, glass, paper, paperboard, and some plastics (bottles, jugs, and tubs).  Cardboard is collected separately on campus but can be placed in single stream recycling if a separate bin is not available.

Colorado State competes in the national recycling competition, Campus Race to Zero Waste (formerly called RecycleMania) each spring, competing against more than 600 colleges and universities. CSU has placed in the top 5-10 percent since 2005, and consistently places as the top Colorado university.

City of Fort Collins Recycling

Visit the Fort Collins Recycling resources website for recycling updates, news, and recycling opportunities.

Not sure if something is recycleable? Here is an City of Fort Collins A-Z list of local diversion options for common household items.

Visit the Timberline Recycling Center in Fort Collins for hard-to-recycle items.

Electronics recycling program (E-waste)

CSU’s Surplus Property implemented an Electronics Recycling Program for e-waste and now accepts personal electronics items from faculty, staff, and students for recycling or e-cycling.

E-cycling computers, monitors, cell phone, TVs and other electronics from campus diverts these items or “e-waste” from landfills. Items that contain significant quantities of hazardous materials, such as lead and mercury. Surplus Property and its recycling vendor provide a secure and safe process for responsible, environmentally conscious electronics recycling for small fees for students, staff and faculty.


CSU has a large on-site composting facility at the Foothills Campus that accepts food waste from the campus dining centers, stadium, and sites across campus. Paper towels are collected in many bathrooms on campus, yard waste is collected by CSU Grounds, and animal bedding and manure is collected from the Foothills Campus. There are two composting systems, an in-vessel composter named OSCAR that is operated as a Living Lab with an intern from Soil & Crop Sciences, and a windrow system.

Surplus Property

Surplus Property handles, disposes, and redistributes all property that the University no longer needs. The main objective is to provide an opportunity for the reallocation of still-usable items from one area of the University to others areas that have a need for them. In addition, items no longer needed by the University are offered to the public through weekly walk-in sales and quarterly public auctions.  Items that no longer have a market value are recycled whenever possible.

Pack It, Store It, Donate It

In an effort to divert solid waste from our landfills, unwanted items are collected during residence hall move out in the spring. Items collected — including clothing, shoes, bikes, school supplies, electronics, furniture, and household goods — are donated to Homeward Alliance who distributes materials to a network of northern Colorado non-profits including domestic violence shelters, the food bank, animal shelters, etc.