Residential Student Service Programs (RSSP) partners with organizations across campus to meet sustainability targets including Zero Waste by 2020 & beyond, Carbon Neutral by 2025 and 25% sustainable food by 2030. The Housing & Dining Sustainability Advocates (HADSA) provide student-led advocacy, auditing, and peer education about sustainability and work to improve housing & dining infrastructure across RSSP. See the tabs below for information on being a sustainable resident, including how to sort your waste and tips for conserving energy and water in the residence halls.
- Waste Sorting Guide
Did you know that UC Berkeley has a goal to divert 90% of its municipal solid waste from landfills to instead be recycled, composted, or reused? As a resident, you can help our campus achieve this goal by sorting your waste properly!
Step 1 is to find the trash room or trash enclosure for your building where you’ll be emptying your room’s compost, recycling and landfill bins. Be sure to keep trash rooms clean and avoid disposing room trash in bathrooms to be considerate of custodial staff.
Compost is for material like food scraps, food soiled paper products, and compostable plastics (#7 PLA). By diverting this waste from landfills, you help turn your waste into nutrient- rich soil. Use the provided compostable liners to line your compost bin and be sure to empty regularly to avoid smells and pests.
Cans & bottles recycling is for glass, steel and aluminum cans, and #1 & #2 plastics only. Flimsy plastics and plastics #3-6 cannot be recycled, so consider reducing the amount of single-use plastics you purchase and opt for reusables like utensil kits, metal water bottles, and tote bags.
Mixed paper recycling is for cardboard, junk mail, and scrap paper. Don’t throw your greasy food boxes in this bin! Those can be composted. Make sure to break down your cardboard and paperboard before disposing to ensure bins don’t overflow.
Landfill is for all other trash including #3-#6 plastics, styrofoam, plastic envelopes, food wrappers, and flimsy plastics. Before throwing away unwanted clothing or household items in the landfill, consider donating these items to local donation centers like Goodwill or ReUSE.
Electronics & Batteries can be brought to each unit front desk for recycling. Feel free to ask the unit front desk any questions you have about where to bring any other waste you generate.
- Energy and Water Conservation
Facts and Figures
- If everyone saved 1 gallon of water a day, weekly campus use could be reduced by 250,000 gallons
- Turning off the faucet while washing your hands can save ½ gallon
- Shortening showers by 5 min can save more than 12 gallons
As California continues to experience severe drought conditions, it’s important to do your part to conserve water. Notice a leak in your building? Report it to your RA to report to the building’s facilities.
The residence halls are responsible for 25% of UC Berkeley’s water use. What can you do to conserve water and energy?
- Shorten your shower by 5 minutes to save over 12 gallons of water. If everyone on campus did this for a week, we would save 3 MILLION gallons.
- Turn off the faucet when you brush your teeth, and check all faucets for drips.
- Washing full loads of laundry on cold saves both energy and water.
- Turn off lights and other electronics when not in use. Unplug any cords not being used to charge or power devices.
- Open your windows and use natural light to brighten your room.
- See how much energy your building is using with this online dashboard.
- Check out more energy saving tips here and read about UC Berkeley’s drought response.