Vision

Reduce, reuse, and divert our waste to create a responsible, healthy, Zero Waste campus.

What We're Doing

The SAVE waste goals focus on reducing waste sent to landfills, increasing the College's waste diversion rate, purchasing sustainable paper, and hosting more Zero Waste events. Visit our Annual Report highlight page for an update on goals and achievements. 

Zero Waste Commencement Initiative

Abby Lewis (PO'19) at Pomona College's first ever zero-waste commencement

Abby Lewis (PO'19) at Pomona College's first ever Zero Waste Commencement

Reusable plate, cup, bowl, and utensils.

Greenware is available for free checkout for campus events.

Two students sort through donated items

ReCoop keeps tons of left-behind items out of the landfill each year.

Map of compost tumbler locations on campus.

Deposit your food waste in one of our outdoor tumblers. The Farm uses the food waste to generate compost as a soil additive.

In 2018, Abby Lewis (PO'19) launched Pomona's first ever zero-waste commencement. Funded by the President's Sustainability Fund, Abby worked with Pomona's catering management on issues which include: choosing certain papers, compostable utensils, and proposing reusable sugar containers instead of packets. Disposable products were made from either corn starch or recycled paper, and nearly all food waste was diverted to either compost or recycling. 

Greenware & Cookware Reusable Event Kits

Greenware event kits provide reusable plates, bowls, cups, and cutlery, along with a compost bucket. Cookware kits have common cooking items, such as pots, pans, bowls, and measuring cups. Both kits are custom-sized and checked out to students, staff, and faculty for campus events.  Order your reusable Greenware and Cookware kits here.

ReCoop

This student-run program promotes reuse and responsibility for items on campus. Diverting over 10 tons each year, this program collects items left behind and discarded by students during move-out weekend and recycles them back in a reuse sale in the fall.

ReCoop Office Program

Departments and offices on campus can now easily exchange unwanted office supplies and furniture through an extension of the ReCoop Program. Contact the Sustainability Office for current inventory.

Composting

Compostable wastes are processed two ways on campus. Compostable waste from the dining halls and outdoor tumblers is picked up by the City of Claremont and is taken to an organic, windrow-style facility in Fontana. Compostable waste from the pickup program buckets for faculty, staff, and students is picked up by student compost drivers and taken to the on-campus Organic Farm.

Compostable Items:

Dining Hall & Compost Tumblers (picked up by the City of Claremont):

  • All food waste (meat, dairy, vegetables, fruits, coffee grounds)
  • NO paper waste or napkins
  • NO industrially-compostable items (utensils, plates, cups) 

Bucket Pickup Program (picked up by the Organic Farm):

  • Vegetables, fruits, coffee grounds, egg shells
  • NO meat or dairy
  • NO paper waste or napkins
  • NO industrially-compostable items (utensils, plates, cups)

Food Rescue

Leftover prepared food from the dining halls is donated to local shelters and charitable organizations by the student-run food rescue group. Pomona College is one of the founding members of the National Food Recovery Network!

E-waste, Ink & Toner Recycling, and Hazardous Waste

The College's electronic waste is handled by a certified and approved e-waste handler with verified appropriate practices. Please bring e-waste to the Sustainability Office for proper disposal.

Batteries, CFL bulbs, ink/toner, and other hazardous wastes are disposed of with an approved handler and outreach is conducted on campus to reduce inappropriate disposal. Please bring hazardous waste to the Smith Campus Center Mailroom or to the Sustainability Office for proper disposal.