Zero Waste

Luther takes an innovative approach to reduce waste generation on campus by implementing a variety of unique and effective projects to keep items in circulation and out of the landfill.

These initiatives emphasize the education of the Luther community on the importance and practicality of waste reduction. There are a number of environmental, social, and economic benefits to each of these projects as well. The Center for Sustainable Communities continues to collaborate with students, faculty, staff, and community members to facilitate a transition to a greener future.

Efforts to Reuse

Office Supplies Reuse Station

Located in Valders 364, recycle or reuse a number of office supplies available to all students, faculty and staff. The closet is open from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. during the week and contains binders, folders, notebooks, scissors, staplers, hole punchers, pens, pencils, paper clips, thumb tacks, and more. Before tossing your old supplies, consider someone else can get another use out of them and bring them to the Office Supplies Reuse Closet. Simply place the supplies in an orderly fashion on the shelf to the right of the door. Remember, the more you give and the more you take, the more successful this project is!

Free Supplies Cupboard

New in 2021, Preus Library has created a cupboard of free, used office supplies for students and library users, located by the printer/copiers on the library’s main floor–right where someone might be in immediate need of a binder or folder. The cupboard is also stocked with withdrawn library magazines and newspapers for art projects.

Efforts to Reduce

PaperCut Print Management

PaperCut is Luther’s print management solution deployed by Information Technology Services (ITS) in 2016. Print management services allow us to more accurately track individual usage and allocate costs in providing print services on campus. They are part of our effort to help cut down on waste and encourage better management of printing resources. The cost of double-sided printing is $.04/side, as opposed to the $.05 charged if printing single sided.

Water Bottle Filling Stations

Luther College has installed a number of water bottle filling stations in these locations in order to reduce the need for single-use plastic water bottles. These filling stations encourage students, faculty, and staff to carry reusable water bottles and avoid unnecessary waste generation. Between September 2019 and September 2020, our water bottle filling stations saved 164,808 plastic water bottles from being used. That would cover the length of over 400 Luther football fields!

  • Dieseth 4th floor
  • Dieseth 5th floor
  • Farwell 8th floor
  • Jenson 1st floor
  • Larsen – Center for Global Learning
  • Larsen – Health Services
  • Loyalty 2nd floor
  • Main 1st floor
  • Miller 5th floor
  • Olin 1st floor
  • Olin 3rd floor
  • Olson 2nd floor
  • Preus Library 1st floor
  • Regents – Concession Stand
  • Regents – Legends Gym
  • Regents – Information Desk
  • Regents – SRC
  • Sampson-Hoffland 1st floor
  • Union 2nd floor
  • Union – Office of the President
  • Valders 2nd floor Nursing hallway
  • Valders 2nd floor Atrium
  • Ylvisaker 1st floor

Efforts to Recycle

Office Recycling and Waste Collection

Each faculty and staff office is equipped with a personal recycling bin and a hanging waste basket. Place all of your recyclable material in the blue recycling bin and non-recyclable waste in the hanging waste basket. The custodial staff will sort your recycling after you leave the office for the day. Please only place dry waste into the hanging waste basket.

Your Blue Bin Project

Each student residence received a recycling bin at the beginning of the year. The bins included recycling instructions on what can and cannot be recycled. Students are responsible for sorting their recyclables and bringing them to the nearest recycling roll-off outside of their residence hall. With the help of a Department of Natural Resources Solid Waste Alternatives Program Grant and a partnership with Winneshiek County, Luther College installed new recycling roll-off dumpsters outside of each residence hall.

Featured News

During move out week student workers and volunteers implemented various tactics in an effort to reuse and recycle, rather than waste.

June 28 2021