The Associated Students, Inc. Recycling Center (AS Recycling Center) at California State University, Long Beach has been in operation since 1971. Ecology minded students founded the Recycling Center in 1970 as they identified a need for a campus-recycling facility.
In the early days, students worked as volunteers and the Center consisted of a couple of 55-gallon drums that separated different glass, newspaper and aluminum cans. With no equipment, the glass and cans had to be crushed by hand. Students used to use a broom handle with a heavy weight on the bottom until a friend from the Engineering department designed something easier to smash the glass. When the 55-gallon drums got full, the students rented a truck with a lift gate and took them to a recycling facility. Any money they made usually paid for the rental of the truck.
The existing recycling center at 5800 Atherton Avenue was built in 1976 with funding from Associated Students, Inc. and the City of Long Beach. Today, the ASI Recycling Center is one of the largest transfer stations on a college campus in the State of California and operates three programs:
After 30 years, the Center remains unique by operating as a student-run facility. Many other recycling centers on college campuses operate out of a university division of facilities management. The ASI Recycling Center is not subsidized by funds from CSULB. Instead, it operates through the assistance of ASI and a grant from the California Department of Conservation.
The Center processes annually more than 1,000 tons of recyclable materials, such as used beverage containers, paper products and plastics. By diverting materials that would otherwise enter a landfill, these materials are used again, thereby saving energy costs, reducing pollution, preserving the natural resources of the planet and protecting the fragile ecosystem.
ASI is in the process of piecing together the history of the Recycling Center and its many student volunteers who helped shaped its evolution. If you would like to contribute your favorite memory, please e-mail: email@example.com.
ASI Recycling Center Timeline
1970 - Recycling Center is founded by students interested in conservation
1976 - Current Recycling Center facility built at 5800 Atherton Avenue
1993 - Associated Students, Inc. Recycling Center becomes recognized as a Licensed State of California Recycling Center
1997 - Grant from California Department of Conservation to purchase recycle bins
1998 - Grant from California Department of Conservation to purchase an automatic baler and electric cart used to pick up recyclables around the 323-acre campus
1999 - Recycling Center starts pick-up of cardboard from residence halls, University Bookstore and other campus locations
1999 - Grant from California Department of Conservation to purchase 16 new pyramid-shaped recycle bins
2001 - Grant from California Collegiate Recycling Coalition