College students are notorious for pizza consumption.

While pizza is a diet staple that keeps college students satiated as they study into the night, this treat comes with its fair share of waste. And since the grease, cheese, and other food residue on the pizza boxes make the cardboard unfit for recycling, disposal is a sustainability issue.

After a spurt of ingenious brainstorming during a focus group discussion, students at NC State University came up with a creative solution to the pizza box debacle.

While pizza boxes may be too much for the recycling bin, they are decomposable.

After refurbishing dumpsters and decorating them with painted-on pizzas, students placed the receptacles around campus for their peers to dispose of pizza boxes.

Since March 2014, more than 18,000 boxes have been saved from the landfill. The project has goals to increase the variety of materials that can be composted before expanding the service to new locations.

We applaud NC State for thinking outside the box and coming up with ways to reduce waste. We are also suckers for a good dumpster makeover–check out this college professor who transformed a dumpster into a house! Or these artists from Georgia, who turned theirs into works of art.

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