Waste Bins

The University of Michigan has standard waste bins and signage to enable all U-M community members to properly and confidently divert waste from landfills—no matter where you are on campus.

Research shows that consistent bins and signage help people place items in the correct bin, resulting in higher quality recycling and compost with less contamination. 

Project Background

In 2016, a committee of faculty, students and staff drew upon best-practices literature and knowledge of the university’s opportunities to develop a set of standards that transformed the look of waste collection and improved the confidence with which community members divert their waste.

Over the course of about two years, the Office of Campus Sustainability, in partnership with Custodial Services and Moving and Trucking, standardized all bins across the university. The project was completed at the end of FY19.

It’s essential for all U-M units (including Michigan Medicine) to adhere to the waste bin standards to maintain the clarity and simplicity the standards established. 

Questions? Email  recycle@umich.edu.

Bin Resources
  • Bin placement guide
    This handy flow chart shows which bins go where.