TerraCycle Writing Instrument Recycling

TerraCycle Writing Instrument Recycling Program

In partnership with TerraCycle and Sanford (a Newell Rubbermaid company), UNMC LiveGreen is offering a special recycling program for defunct writing instruments. As part of the program, departments can request a TerraCycle box (shown below) that can be used to collect old, non-functioning writing instruments, such as pens, dry-erase markers, and sharpies. To request a TerraCycle box, a department employee should email energy@nebraskamed.com.

Once the collection boxes are full, the department should email energy@nebraskamed.com again and request a pre-paid UPS shipping label. Once this request is submitted, a PDF file of the pre-paid UPS shipping label will be emailed to the department representative who made the request. The department should then adhere the pre-paid label to one of their own large envelopes or boxes (NOT the actual TerraCycle box) and mail the writing instruments to TerraCycle.

For each defunct writing instrument that is sent to TerraCycle, UNMC LiveGreen will receive 2 cents, which will be used to help fund other energy and resource conservation efforts on campus.

For more information about the program, please reference the questions and answers noted below.

How long does it take to receive the TerraCycle box after a request has been submitted?
It may take up to 3 to 4 weeks before the department receives the TerraCycle box via inter-office mail.

What types of writing instruments can be placed in the TerraCycle box?
All brands and types of defunct writing instruments can be placed in the TerraCycle box. For example, markers, highlighters, dry-erase markers, pens, traditional #2 wood pencils, mechanical pencils, erasers, and colored pencils can all be placed in the box. The only writing-related item that CANNOT be placed in the box is correction fluid (e.g., Wite-Out).

Once the box is full, what should the department do?
When a box is full of defunct writing instruments, the department representative should email energy@nebraskamed.com to request a pre-paid UPS shipping label. A PDF file of the pre-paid UPS shipping label will be emailed to the department representative who made the request within one to two weeks. The department should then print off the pre-paid UPS label and adhere it to a large envelope or box supplied by the respective department. The department should then mail the envelope or box using the UPS shipping system. If a UPS bin is not located close to the department, a department representative will personally have to drop off the package at a UPS bin or UPS store.

Please DO NOT ship the actual TerraCycle box (this box is meant to stay in the department and reused for collection).

What are the dimensions of the TerraCycle box?
The boxes are roughly 20 inches high, 10 inches wide, and 12 inches deep.

Where should a department place the TerraCycle box?
It is up to the department on where it would like to place the box.

How does a department know if someone has already ordered a TerraCycle box that respective department or work area?
Due to logistical challenges associated with this volunteer-coordinated program, UNMC LiveGreen is not maintaining a list of the departments that request a bin. In light of this, please ask other employees if a box has already been ordered before placing a request.

Can more than one box be requested for a given department / work area?
Yes, more than one box can be requested. However, we ask that you try to limit the number of boxes requested so that a sufficient number of boxes are available for all areas of the university. In some cases, we may ask the department to first see if one (or two) boxes is sufficient to cover the department / work area and then possibly order more at a later date if the demand is there.

Can external sites (not on/near the main campus) request TerraCycle boxes?
Yes, external sites can participate and request a TerraCycle box as long as the box can be delivered to the department/site via inter-office mail.

What happens to the collected writing instruments once they are sent to TerraCycle?
TerraCycle will recycle the items and turn them into other fun and innovative products. Learn more at http://www.terracycle.com/en-US/brigades/writing-instruments-brigade-r.html.

*If you have additional questions regarding TerraCycle not answered above, please email energy@nebraskamed.com