New Sustainable Bin Liners Result in Environmental and Monetary Savings

The University has partnered with Revolutionary Bag to implement sustainable bin liners that result in lower costs and environmental impacts. The bin liners are used for both waste and recycling on the River Campus and by the Horticulture and Grounds department in outdoor waste containers.

Revolutionary Bag strives to produce high quality trash bags without costing more. The company has a closed loop recycling process that begins with their agricultural film which is used by farmers to grow their crops. The plastic would typically end up in a landfill, but Revolutionary Bag converts the waste into post-consumer recycled plastic which is then used to make the bags. The bags contain 30% to 97% post-consumer recycled resin which has currently diverted more than 1 billion pounds of waste. The video below explains how Revolutionary Bags are produced:

SCS Global Services conducted an assessment to determine the positive environmental impacts of the bags. Their findings address energy resource depletion, global climate change, ground level ozone, and ocean warming.

  • 53% less depletion of non-renewable energy resources
  • Global climate change emissions lowered by 37%
  • 31% reduction of ground level ozone (smog)
  • 50% reduction of fine particulate matter (PM5)
  • 12% reduction of ocean acidification
  • 31% reduction of ocean warming
  • 51% reduction of regional acidification

The new liners are also cost efficient, which is not always the case with environmentally preferable products. The River Campus estimated it will save nearly $15,000 annually by using these bags in waste containers inside of its buildings as well as in outdoor waste containers.

The School of Medicine and Dentistry has trialed the bags with success and will transition 100% with their next order. The new liners are considered low density bags which are stronger and more tear resistant than the high density bags that were previously used. A pilot project is being conducted at the Golisano Children’s Hospital to test the new bin liners in the Medical Center. If the results are satisfactory, the goal is to transition to the new liners throughout URMC as well.


Written by Emily Su, Class of 2022

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