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Alcoa Foundation collaborates with ASU on campus recycling initiatives

March 25, 2013

Alcoa Foundation is partnering with national nonprofit Keep America Beautiful and the College & University Recycling Coalition to provide 75 recycling bins to Arizona State University in 2013 as part of the Alcoa Foundation Recycling Bin Grant Program. ASU is one of 35 colleges and universities receiving a portion of more than 11,500 recycling bins.

The Alcoa Foundation Recycling Bin Grant Program is an effort to help schools boost their recycling results during the eight-week RecycleMania Tournament, and expand their recycling efforts throughout the year. RecycleMania is a friendly competition that aims to change behavior about recycling and raise awareness about waste reduction programs on college campuses.

Alcoa Foundation and Keep America Beautiful have awarded 35 grants to colleges and universities in the U.S. ASU has received 75 bins to be used in different on-campus settings. The bins will be used to further transition both the ASU West and Downtown Phoenix campus classrooms to better align with the ASU recycling program. This year’s variety of recycling bins has enabled ASU to get additional recycling infrastructure where it needs it most in an effort to divert recyclables from the waste stream.

The Keep America Beautiful partnership further reinforces Alcoa and Alcoa Foundation’s commitment to increasing recycling across America.

“Donation of these bins will help us get good recycling infrastructure to a few more important locations on our Downtown Phoenix and West campuses,” said Nick Brown, director of University Sustainability Practices at ASU.

ASU, a New American University of 73,000 students on five teaching campuses and two research parks, has reduced its waste to landfill by 29 percent over the past five years, despite having expanded by 21 percent in floor space and increasing 18 percent in enrollment, Brown adds.

During RecycleMania, which concludes on March 31, colleges and universities vie for top awards in nine categories to see which schools recycle the most on a per capita basis, produce the least amount of waste and recycle the largest percentage of their overall waste. In 2012, 605 colleges and universities participated in the challenge, collecting more than 92 million pounds of recyclables and compostable organics.

ASU is participating in RecycleMania for the second year in a row and making strides to increase the university’s overall recycling and diversion rate.

“Alcoa Foundation has been a true leader in advancing recycling nationwide through its support of its bin grant and other programs,” said Matthew M. McKenna, president and CEO of Keep America Beautiful. “Its involvement with RecycleMania and the College and University Recycling Coalition’s webinar series has helped to increase recycling on campuses and instill a recycling ethic that college students will carry with them the rest of their lives.”

Additionally, the College & University Recycling Coalition, in partnership with Keep America Beautiful, and the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, has announced the schedule for its 2013 series of educational webinars, sponsored by Alcoa Foundation.

College & University Recycling Coalition webinars feature recognized collegiate and industry recycling experts covering a range of topics related to sustainable materials management. All webinars are free to registered participants. For a complete schedule of webinars, go to

Alana Levine,
ASU Recycling Department