Created September 2018
Getting to Zero Waste
Single-Use Plastic Elimination Policy
In April 2020, UC Berkeley committed to the strongest plastic ban in the country. This comprehensive target will eliminate all non-essential single-use plastic with viable alternatives by 2030. Unlike other plastic bans, UC Berkeley’s initiative goes beyond previously existing plastic reduction targets focused on foodware and plastic bags, and addresses the spectrum of products and packaging used in campus academics, research, administration, and events. Items that are commonly not a part of plastic policies, such as chip bags and foam packaging, are included in this commitment, so this will push for upstream solutions and continue UC Berkeley’s leadership in sustainability.
UC Berkeley is currently working toward our Zero Waste by 2020 goal to greatly reduce the amount of campus waste sent to landfill. Today we are diverting about 54% of our municipal solid waste stream to recycling, composting, or reuse. Our goal is to divert 90% or more of our everyday waste by the end of 2020!
To help us achieve this goal:
- put compostable and recyclable materials into the right bins,
- reduce usage of packaging, plastics, and single-use products,
- and use more reusables!
For more ways to get involved in the Zero Waste Movement on campus, check out the Zero Waste Coalition.
See the November 2019 call to action, all campus email "countdown to zero waste by 2020" from campus leadership.
The UC Berkeley Guide to Zero Waste
Bring on the Bins
More about Zero Waste at Cal
Our campus hub is Cal Zero Waste, find out what the campus is doing in detail.
For more information about zero waste at UC Berkeley, click here to read UC Berkeley's 2019 Zero Waste Plan.
The student Zero Waste Research Center at UC Berkeley researches and implements upstream strategies for reducing campus waste, with a focus on purchasing, redesigning products, creating behavior change incentives, and instituting closed-loop “circular economy” waste systems.
See our Waste Goals and Performance.