Plastics Reduction Partner Program

Become a Plastics Reduction Partner

The National Wildlife Federation and the Campus Race to Zero Waste Program are excited to offer a certification program for colleges and universities taking action to reduce the purchase and use of plastics on campus.

Watch webinar to learn more about the New Plastics Reduction Partner Certification Program.

Become a Certified Plastics Reduction Partner

There are three levels of certification:

National Wildlife Federation Campus Race to Zero Waste Plastics Reduction Partner Bronze badge

Bronze (18-48 points)

Introductory badge - your college or university is newer to the plastics reduction space, and trying to get the word out about the need for change.

National Wildlife Federation Campus Race to Zero Waste Plastics Reduction Partner Silver badge

Silver (49-74 points)

Intermediate badge - your college or university is reducing plastics in practice, and your impact is visible campus-wide.

National Wildlife Federation Campus Race to Zero Waste Plastics Reduction Partner Green badge

Green (75-100 points)

Advanced level badge - your college or university is institutionally committed, and demonstrating leadership in the plastics reduction space as a true change agent.

Certification Framework - Four Action Categories

Build Awareness

Support Behavior Change

Assess and Implement Operational Change

Demonstrate Institutional Leadership

stars a program of aashe logo

Participation in the Plastics Reduction Partner program is eligible for recurring AASHE STARS innovation credit. Schools are required to have submitted the commitment letter and share documentation for at least 10 points to be eligible for credit.

Steps to Apply for Certification

1 in gray circle icon

Commitment Letter: Review, fill in required action statements, and have high-level administrator sign and date commitment letter.

Note: All campuses are required to submit a signed letter of commitment prior to applying for certification (Step 2).

2 in gray circle icon

Apply for Certification: Review the Plastics Reduction Partner workbook, download and begin entering in your data and documentation.

This document features category action opportunities, associated points and required documentation (same content that is hosted within the downloadable Workbook). This document will continually be reviewed and updated. Comments and suggestions are welcome, email Kristy Jones at

Note to Applicants: The process of reviewing the completed workbook and supporting documentation will take up to three months. Once the application has been approved, the NWF team will be in touch to award certification.


The Plastics Reduction Partner program is on a three-year cycle to integrate into action and reporting associated with AASHE STARS processes. Campuses will be asked to re-apply for certification every three years to remain current, and your three year date is determined by the month and year of your last submission. Once schools have submitted their letter of commitment, they are eligible to apply for certification if they meet criteria for one of the levels of certification (Bronze, Silver or Green). Schools will need to wait at least 1 year to apply for the next level of certification.


Review the current list below of college and university Plastic Reduction Partners. Once campuses submit their Commitment letter, they will be placed on the list of current partners and receive a participant badge and a press release template to share with their campus's communications office to celebrate taking the first step toward certification. Once campuses submit their workbook and are awarded certification, National Wildlife Federation will share the certification badge and coordinate with the certified campus to promote and communicate their accomplishment.

Current Plastic Reduction Partners


Commitment Letter

Contact Us

Contact Kristy Jones at with any questions or comments. Feedback is welcome!

The Plastics Reduction Partner Program was designed by Amber Saxton, Sustainability Program Manager, Campus Efficiencies, George Mason University (Virginia), with support from Kristy Jones, Director, Higher Education Programs, National Wildlife Federation. A special thank you to the following campuses for reviewing this new certification program and providing feedback for improvement: Knox College, Mount Holyoke College, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Texas Tech University and The Ohio State University.

#break free from plastic

National Wildlife Federation is a proud member of the #BreakFreeFromPlastic movement.

Proud Member Plastic Pollution Coalition badge

Campus Race to Zero Waste is a member of the Plastic Pollution Coalition.

Get Involved

Where We Work

More than one-third of U.S. fish and wildlife species are at risk of extinction in the coming decades. The National Wildlife Federation is on the ground in seven regions across the country, collaborating with 53 state and territory affiliates to reverse the crisis and ensure wildlife thrive.

Learn More