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Materials Management on Campus (Trash, Recycling and Compost)

Materials Management at ESF


How and What Can I Compost on Campus?

ESF rolled out its campus-wide composting program at the beginning of the Fall 2019 semester. There are compost bins located on every floor, of every building. There are also a number of compost bins next to the Trailhead Café, in the Gateway Center.

There are also 2 full size exterior compost bins, located outside of Moon Library and the Gateway Center, and 2 half-size exterior compost bins, located outside of Marshall Hall and Baker Laboratory.

Syracuse Haulers collects compost from campus on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday and brings it to Onondaga County Resource Recovery Agency's (OCRRA) compost sites, located in Camillus and Jamesville. These OCRRA facilities accept food scraps, yard waste and items certified by the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI).

The image below outlines the types of organic materials that can be placed in compost bins throughout campus.

food scraps

Thanks to the Trailhead Café's willingness to embrace a shift to compostable packaging, it is easy to compost on campus. The images below show what Trailhead Café items are compostable and what items belong in the trash.

It is very important to remember that OCRRA only accepts BPI certified items at its compost facilities. If you bring a container to campus or are at an event on campus that has disposable packaging it is best to throw it in the trash, unless you are certain that it is BPI certified. The best way to make decisions when composting (and recycling) is to remember, "When in doubt, throw it out". We want to make sure that we are only sending materials that can truly be composted to OCRRA!

Compostable Trailhead items include: all to-go containers (except triangle shaped containers), all soup cups, all drink cups, all lids, napkins, condiment containers, coffee sleeves and straws.

trailhead items

Trailhead items that belong in the trash include: triangle shaped containers, coffee stirrers, utensils, wrap paper and fry containers.

trailhead items How and What Can I Compost Off-Campus?

Students, faculty and staff are able to collect food scraps and yard waste at home (a 5-gallon collection bin will do the trick) and drop it off at one of two OCRRA compost sites. The drop-off location addresses and webpage to purchase a compost drop-off pass ($25/year) can be found here.

Members of the campus community that are interested in composting at home can learn more about the process by visiting this DEC informational page.


If you have questions regarding recycling on campus, please contact the Physical Plant & Facilities main office at ext. 6588.