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Recycling. All Together Now.

The University of Richmond uses mixed or single-stream recycling on campus. All recyclable materials can go in any blue recycling bin. Recycling is an important piece of the University's sustainability efforts, but remember that reducing and reusing is even more important.

The University uses blue recycling bins and black, grey, or tan trash bins. Please read the labels at the University Forest Apartment and Fraternity row drop off locations to ensure that your trash and recycling end up in the correct bin.

If you have a suggestion for how to improve recycling in an area you use please let us know

What can go in the Recycling bins?

  • Empty aluminum/steel/tin cans
  • Empty glass bottles
  • Empty plastics #1-#7 (look for a number in the recycling symbol on the plastic - no styrofoam)
  • All mixed paper including: envelopes, copy paper, paper bags, chipboard, telephone books, junk mail, books, magazines, cardboard, and newspaper
  • Food cartons and cardboard
  • Tin and bi-metallic containers (including aerosol cans)

What can't go in the Recycling bins?

  • Any material with substantial food debris
  • Alkaline batteries (please use battery recycling bin in the lobby of 815 Boatwright) 
  • Plastic bags or film
  • Styrofoam of any kind
  • Light bulbs
  • Mirrors, drinking glasses
  • Wood
  • Electronics (E-Waste collection occurs each spring)
  • Trash
  • Utensils and straws

If you live off campus, visit CVWMA's website to learn about recycling in your community.

Other Recyclables

Some materials on campus are handled separately from the regular waste stream for many reasons. Please review the list below for information on how to properly dispose of special items on campus.

  • University Owned Electronics: Includes laptops, PCs, monitors, printers: Call the Information Services Help Desk for information/assistance at (804) 287-6400. The University reuses computers whenever possible. Once a unit has reached the end of its useful life at the University, it is recycled through Arrow. The recycling process reduces the University's environmental impact from electronics.
  • Personal Electronics: The University hosts periodic e-waste collection events. We accept personally owned e-waste from UR employees and students.
  • Furniture: Call Procurement and Strategic Sourcing for more information at (804) 287-6827.
  • Batteries: Call University Facilities for information on rechargeable and other batteries at (804) 289-8600. Alkaline Battery recycling is sponsored by GreenUR and is available in the library entrance outside 8:15 and just inside the bookstore entrance (this program is suspended during the summer.)
  • Other: Have a specific item (i.e. Cinder Blocks) that you are not sure if you can recycle?  Call facilities at (804) 289-8600 or Sustainability at (804) 287-1268 or email

Test Your Knowledge with Our Recycling Quiz

Our quiz focuses on what you can and cannot recycle on campus. Once you have completed the quiz, you can look over the answer key here

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Starbucks cups (and other paper food containers) be recycled?

No. Starbucks cups contain a low-density polyethylene plastic lining, which prevents them from being accepted by our recycling facility. 

Are pizza boxes recyclable?

Yes. Please make sure there is no food or food residue left in the box. If the bottom of the box is contaminated, but the lid is clean, you can recycle the top and send the bottom of the box to the landfill. 

Conserve Plastic

Use reusable bags whenever you can or reuse plastic bags. Visit A Bag's Life to find out where you can recycle your plastic bags.

8:15, ETC, Tyler’s, and Martin’s all offer discounts for bringing reusable bags or a tumbler.


For more information on UR Recycling Services, contact the Office for Sustainability at

Community Resources

Richmond, Henrico, Chesterfield, and several other local communities rely on CVWMA for recycling. Visit their website to learn more about how to recycle in your community. The website also has information about special recycling events.

Keep Virginia Beautiful has information on waste reduction, recycling, and local sustainability events.

Visit the City of Richmond's Sustainability website to learn more about the city's sustainability efforts.