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Recycling Program

Drexel University recycles approximately 900 tons of waste each year. Today, more than 30 percent of the University's waste stream is being recycled. The University currently works with three recycling partners: National Recycling, AERC, and Integrated Waste Systems.

Drexel University has implemented BigBelly® solar trash compactors with integrated recycling units on the University City Campus. The units are completely self-powered, using solar power for 100 percent of its energy needs and only require as much space as the "footprint" of an ordinary receptacle with a capacity that is five times greater. This increased capacity reduces collection trips and can cut fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent. BigBelly® also provides cost efficiencies from labor savings, fuel cost and maintenance savings, as well as environmental benefits from reduced emissions of greenhouse gases and other pollutants.

The University also turns all lawn clippings and leaf waste into compost. The compost is then used throughout campus in new planting beds and in bed renovations. Each year 30 to 40 tons of leaves and clippings are turned into compost.

Why Drexel Recycles

Saves Natural Resources - By making products from recycled materials, land is conserved and the need to drill for oil and dig for minerals is reduced.

Saves Energy - It usually takes less energy to make recycled products; recycled aluminum, for example, takes 95 percent less energy than new aluminum from bauxite ore.

Saves Clean Air and Water - In most cases, making products from recycled materials creates less air pollution and water pollution than making products from virgin materials.

Saves Landfill Space - When the materials that you recycle go into new products, they don’t go into landfills or incinerators, so landfill space is conserved.

Saves Money and Creates Jobs - The recycling process creates far more jobs than landfills or incinerators, and recycling can frequently be the least expensive waste management method for cities and towns.

For information about the recycling program and future recycling plans, email

Learn more about Drexel University's commitment to sustainability at