Waste Reduction Actions

Refuse Single Use/Reuse

Allegheny offers systems, tools, and incentives to support habits of reuse in place of single use. We challenge students to develop strong habits of carrying their reusable items with them to reduce single-use items during their time on campus and whenever they venture off-campus and after graduation.

Reduce – Shop Smart

Think before you buy anything. Do you really need this right now and a year from now? Can you find a similar item from a used source such as a thrift store, family, or friend? Can you invest in a quality alternative that has minimal environmental or social impact? Can you repurpose something you already have?


Allegheny offers recycling collection in all buildings for your standard municipal wastes – plastic, metal, paper and cardboard. You can also recycle your electronic waste (batteries, cords, lightbulbs, CDs/DVDs, ink cartridges, etc.) in the Campus Center and Brooks Hall.

Carry a Zero-Waste Kit

You would never leave your room without your phone, keys, and student ID. Add your zero-waste essentials to that checklist and make it a habit to leave your room prepared to avoid waste. You should have a reusable bottle or cup, your Green Box or token, your spork, maybe even a cloth shopping bag, reusable straw, and bandana to use as a napkin. You can even keep your token, spork, bag, straw, and bandana in a zip pouch so it’s easy to grab everything at once.


Don’t throw things away just because you don’t want or need them anymore. Consider whether you can repurpose it or sell or share it with someone who will give it new use. You can also donate used, but still useful items, to a thrift store or service organization. Within a half-mile of campus you can consign at Ooh Lala or donate to Women’s Services, the Humane Society thrift store, or the Center for Family Services.

Shop Secondhand

Give new life to used items and avoid the impact of creating new items by shopping secondhand sources like consignment, thrift, and antique stores. You can shop in downtown Meadville at the Humane Society or Center for Family Services thrift stores, Ooh Lala consignment store, or find upcycled fashions at the Green Shoppe.

Shop in Bulk Downtown

To minimize your grocery related packaging, you can shop in bulk at multiple downtown Meadville locations. Bring any used jar or bag, ask for your tare weight for each at the register, then fill up! The Market House offers coffee, grains, legumes, nuts, dried fruit, teas, herbs, and spices. The Green Shoppe offers bulk liquid dishwashing and laundry soaps, plus grab a plastic-free shampoo bar while you’re there. Indigo Boutique & Botanica offers a wild array of sea salts, herbs, spices, clay, chlorophyll, etc. for cooking and making health and beauty concoctions.

More Sustainability Actions