Recycling and Waste Reduction

OSU is committed to having its campuses achieve carbon neutrality and has developed a variety of strategies to help reduce waste and increase recycling. There are many opportunities to reduce waste and increase recycling in labs. Returning empty toner cartridges to Stores (614-292-2694 or or sending computers or other equipment that is no longer of value for your research to Surplus (contact your department or for assistance with the required procedures) are ways to fulfill this category. Another waste reducing strategy is to send surplus chemicals (both opened and unopened) to the EHS Chemical Management Program. EHS will also exchange your hazardous mercury-filled thermometers for a safer alternative. Additionally, EHS accepts fluorescent bulbs and batteries (call 614-292-1284 or for additional information).
More common recyclable items are the cardboard boxes used in shipping. Please remove packing materials from the box, flatten and place in hallway for the custodial crew to remove to the recycling (red) dumpster. Almost all forms of paper (e.g., computer and writing paper, junk mail, colored paper, Post-it Notes, brown paper, envelopes, ream wrappers, magazines, catalogs, and telephone books) are recyclable. Glass and plastic (#1 & #2) bottles and metal cans that once contained chemicals may be recycled so long as no trace of the chemical remains. As a reminder, Pyrex and specially coated glassware are not recyclable. OSU currently does not provide a mechanism for recycling Styrofoam, but arrangements can be made by contacting SWACO at The plastic boxes that hold pipette tips are also recyclable. OSU now has an all-in-one policy for recycled items, meaning that all recyclable materials go into the same recycling bin, but for the sake of your lab inspections, keep food-related materials out of the lab areas and recycle bins.
Any office, lab group, department, floor, or building can apply for certification that have already taken steps to support sustainability by completing an application for the Green Buckeye Office Certification. The program seeks to recognize offices and labs that have taken steps to support the university’s sustainability goals and help those just getting started.
If you have any recycling related questions, please contact:
Corey Hawkey
Sustainability Coordinator
Energy Services and Sustainability
What Can I Recycle?


Lab Glassware Recycling

The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James) 460 W. 10th Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210 Phone: 1-800-293-5066 | Email: