Recycling at JJC

Why JJC Recycles

Joliet Junior College has achieved and surpassed the waste reduction goal of 40%. The current waste disposed per student of 0.0284 tons per student represents a 57.6% decrease from the amount of waste generated per student in 1987. The College plans to continue in its commitment to waste reduction by increasing the diversion of materials from the waste stream. Recycling is beneficial because it conserves valuable natural resources, reduces energy consumption in the manufacturing of goods, creates jobs, stimulates business development, extends the life of landfills, reduces disposal costs, and is just the right thing to do…

Facility Services is responsible for ensuring that JJC meets the diversion requirements established by law and is dedicated to making recycling and waste diversion practices on campus as easy as possible.  If you have comments or suggestions on how to improve JJC’s recycling efforts, we welcome your feedback.

Contact JJC's Facility Services at (815) 280-2396.

Ways to Recycle at JJC:

Cans, bottles and mixed paper

Recycling containers placed around campus are used for aluminum cans, glass/plastic bottles and paper recycling. These containers are located inside many building classrooms and hallways and are serviced regularly by our recycling team. To report a full container, contact Facility Services at ext. 2553 or 2332.

Facility Services provides all campus faculty and general staff with a blue desk recycling container for the collection of mixed office paper.

Large paper recycling containers are also provided for departmental mail and copy rooms. Paper collections are made daily by the recycling staff at the same time trash is collected from offices.

If your desk container fills up before your pickup date, we recommend emptying it in the large blue or gray container. Individuals who need a recycling container can request one from Facility Services by calling ext. 2553 or 2332.

The following paper products are accepted in the blue and gray recycling containers:

  • colored paper
  • white paper
  • newspaper
  • magazines
  • chipboard
  • blueprints
  • cardboard
  • books
  • file folders
  • shredded paper
  • phone books
  • junk mail (including envelopes)

Do NOT include:

  • napkins
  • tissues
  • paper/plastic plates
  • food
  • paper cups
  • candy wrappers
  • non-recyclable trash

The key with this program is that, if the paper is dry, it can be recycled. Staples and paper clips do not need to be removed.

Faculty and staff who are retiring, moving offices, or simply doing a major cleanout of their workspace, can request temporary cans for large volumes of paper. Special arrangements will be made to pick up these materials outside of the normal collection schedule.

Single Stream Recycling

With "Single Stream Recycling", all recyclable items can be commingled in the same recycling bin.


Newspapers Accepted

  • Anything that comes in the newspaper

Plastics Accepted

Check the plastic containers identified by the following codes

  •  1 PET, 2HDPE, 3PVCV, 4 LDPE, 5PP, 7 Other

Plastics Not Accepted

  • 6PS
  • Plastic bags, sheets, fil or tarps
  • styrofoam Blocks
  • Styrofoam Peanuts
  • Expanded foam and clear polystyrene (#6 plastic)
  • Motor Oil, Insecticide or Herbicide Containers

Other Items Not Accepted

  • Food Covered Items
  • Food Waste
  • Waxed Paper
  • Wax Cardboard
  • Fabrics
  • Wood
  • Tissue Paper
  • Carbon Paper
  • Foil Wrap/Bows/Ribbons
  • Hard Cover Books
  • Paper Towels
  • Paper Plates
  • Pots & Pans
  • Wire
  • Toys
  • Pizza Boxes
  • Aluminum Siding

Aluminum Cans Accepted

Please rinse and if possible, flatten

  • Aluminum Foil & Pie Plates
  • Tin/Steel and Bi-Metal Cans Accepted
  • Cookie Tins or other decorative tins
  • Food and empty aerosol cans - Please remove labels

No paint of household chemicals cans

Mixed Paper Accepted

  • Magazines/Telephone Books/Catalogs
  • Junk Mail/Envelopes (no windows)
  • Brown Paper Grocery Bags
  • Note, Typing, Computer Printout Paper
  • Frozen food trays and boxes
  • Chip board, i.e. Cereal boxes (with liner removed)
  • Gift boxes, Small boxes (unwaxed), Paper Tubes
  • Corrugated Boxes (flattened, no larger that 3'x3')**Please remove packing peanuts and all plastic materials from from shipping boxes
  • Wet strength carrier stock
  • Office Paper/School Paper, Annual Reports
  • MLS Books, NCR Forms

Glass Bottles and Jars Accepted

  • Clear, brown, green and blue - Please rinse. You do not need to remove labels

No window glass, ceramics, mirrors, light bulbs, Pyrex, drinking glasses or dishes.

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Computers and Electronic

Prior to discarding any computer equipment, all information must first be erased from the hard drive (in the case of hard drives that are still operational) or physically destroyed (in the case of a non-operational hard drive). Special programs that destroy the data need to be used (for operational hard drives only).

Where Does It Go?

Currently computers and electronics from JJC are sent to storage by IT and listed for sale on an equipment liquidation sale. The majority of electronics are purchased by various recycling companies and dismantled into separate components (circuit boards, metal, wire, plastic) and then recycled.

Did You Know?

Each computer or television display contains an average of 4 to 8 pounds of lead.

Consumer electronics constitute 40 percent of lead found in landfills; while 70 percent of heavy metals (including mercury and cadmium) in landfills comes from electronic equipment discards. These hazardous substances can contaminate ground water and pose other environmental and public health risks.

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Toner and Ink Jet Cartridges

Toner cartridges should be recycled by placing used cartridges back in their boxes and returning them to Central Receiving through inter-campus mail for shipping. Please do not put toner cartridges in with mixed paper or cardboard.

Where Does It Go?

Toner cartridges are collected by a local vendor and returned to companies that disassemble and refurbish the parts to like-new condition. The cartridges are then filled with new toner and sold as remanufactured toner cartridges.

Inkjet cartridges should be placed in pre-addressed mailers and sent to our recycling company. If you need mailers, call Facility Services at ext. 2332 and they will be sent to you through inter-office mail. These mailers can also be used for your home ink cartridges and are postage paid. At this time we receive no money for this service.

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Surplus Property

Surplus property consists of college-owned items that are no longer needed by a department. This includes computers, furniture and office equipment.

Prior to removing or disposing of any property, a work order must be completed and sent to the Facility Services Department for processing. Disposed property is NOT to be left in hallways, stairwells, or outside of buildings prior to its removal. Abandoning equipment in this manner is a violation of campus policy and can create safety hazards.

Where Does It Go?

The type and condition of surveyed equipment determines whether the items are reused or recycled.

Several options exist, including: making property available to other departments on campus, donating items to local non-profit agencies and schools, sending equipment to a public auction under contract with the college, posting items on the JJC Web site, or dismantling property into separate components for recycling.

The Business Services Office requests board approval to offer used surplus to district schools and their disposal sale in accordance with policy. Remaining items are disposed of via recycling methods whenever possible.

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Special Events

Throughout the year, JJC hosts hundreds of large and small events on campus including commencements and college fairs. Individuals may request recycling services for special events; however, it may not be possible to accommodate all requests.

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All trimmings from JJC trees and shrubs are collected and stored during the season and run through a wood chipper once per year. The woodchips are then recycled back into our plant beds.

All materials composted from JJC's Greenhouse, plant beds, and soon from Food Service, is collected, stored and turned while composting.

Composted materials are anticipated to be returned to our agriculture fields and plant beds.

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Wooden shipping pallets in good condition can be brought to Facility Services in L building where they are stored until a pickup is requested.

Where Does It Go?

Pallets are collected by a local company that reconditions them for use as pallets again. Those that are damaged are shredded offsite for use as power generation fuel, alternative daily landfill cover, and compost.

Construction and Demolition Debris

Building renovations and construction projects take place on campus year round, increasing significantly during summer months. Most of the construction activities create substantial amounts of recyclable debris, including wood, concrete, asphalt, drywall, metal, wire, cardboard, and ceiling tiles.

Contractors for JJC recycle construction and demolition (C&D) debris as part of their scope of work. In most cases, this is achieved by having the commingled waste hauled to a designated C&D recovery facility, where recovery rates of 80 percent are often achieved.

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Used rechargeable batteries that have exhausted their life span should NOT be thrown in the trash, as they contain toxic materials that can contaminate ground water when land-filled, or cause air pollution when incinerated.

Where Does It Go?

All types of dead batteries (rechargeable and non-rechargeable) are brought to Facility Services in L Building and placed in the collection container. (Hazardous Waste Storage)

Contact ext. 2553 or 2332 to make arrangements. Should volume increase, the college will look into other alternatives.

Did You Know?

Every year more than 3 billion batteries are used and thrown away by American households. This equates to 125,000 tons of batteries discarded every year. Placed end-to-end, discarded AA batteries would circle the earth 6 times. To stem the tide of disposable batteries, consider using rechargeable batteries instead.

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Tires and Motor Oil

Facility Services is responsible for maintaining the pool of campus work vehicles. Both used tires and motor oil must be properly handled to avoid environmental hazards, such as large scale fires and contamination of water sources.

Used motor oil and other used automotive-type fluids are taken to the Auto Shop and placed in their used oil bulk tank which is pumped out by a recycler. Other departments, such as Maintenance and Technical, have had their used fluids pumped out by recyclers in the past.

Where Does It Go?

Tires from JJC are collected by a local recycler and those that meet safety standards are resold as used tires. The majorities of tires are not suitable for reuse and are shredded into crumb rubber for use in a variety of manufacturing applications.

Motor oil is collected and picked up by a local company processed and reused. Both lubricants, such as motor oil and fuels, such as heating oil, are petroleum products. When an oil can no longer perform its original lubrication job, it may be perfectly suitable for reuse and a second life as a fuel petroleum product in, say, a power plant with little or no treatment.

If some treatment is needed, reprocessing of used motor oil removes some water and particles so that the oil can be burned and used as fuel to generate heat or electricity for commercial operations.

Up to 74 percent of all oil reuse/recycling in the U.S. is for burning in turbines, incinerators, power plants, cement kilns and manufacturing facilities (asphalt, steel, etc.).

An additional 11 percent of used motor oil is burned in specifically designed industrial space heaters. This creates a valuable form of energy, which helps our economy by avoiding the need to refine new commercial heating oil from imported crude oil.

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JJC's Facility Services Department contracts with Everlights Lamp and Ballast Recycling.

Founded in 1995, Everlights provides cost-effective and environmentally safe recycling services to the contractor, industrial and commercial industries. Everlights is committed to helping companies safely dispose of fluorescent bulbs, HID lamps, PCB and non-PCB ballasts, hazardous waste, special waste, computers and batteries.

Everlights recycling processes meet or exceed all state and federal regulations, limiting liability and any financial penalties. Best of all, their innovative recycling program keeps untreated mercury out of landfills, ensuring a cleaner and healthier environment.

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Scrap Metal

Scrap metal is taken to Facility Services in L Building and is recycled and accounted for by our current trash/recycling service.

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Interface Carpet

JJC began using InterfaceFLOR carpet in 2007 and continues to use them for their commitment to be environmentally responsible; for their return and recycle program; and for their renewable and recyclable content.

Where Does It Go?

The college currently stores used carpet in the Facility Services Building. To schedule a pick-up, Facility Services contacts Interface - Customer Care. They send out a driver to pick up the used carpet and take it back to their plant for recycling.

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2012 Recycled Material Totals - 1st Quarter​​