Recycle effectively at UNSW

We aim to eliminate single-use plastics, maximise recycling and minimise waste-to-landfill. By improving waste practices and behaviours we aim to conserve natural resources, make cost savings and improve waste awareness amongst our students and staff. 

How to recycle on campus

UNSW has 2 managed collection points for soft plastic recycling across upper and lower campus.

You can recycle any clear soft plastic that passes the scrunch test. This means any plastic packaging that is transparent, colourless and can be easily squeezed into a ball in your hand goes into the orange bins. 

Acceptable soft plastics include:

  • Pallet wrap
  • Shrink wrap
  • Stretch wrap
  • Bubble wrap
  • Air pillows
  • Plastic bags

How to effectively recycle soft plastic:

  1. Collect clear soft plastic at a central location in your office, lab or workshop.
  2. If needed, you can collect clear plastic bin liners from upper and lower campus Stores.
  3. Once full, deposit your clear soft plastic into an orange bin at one of the following locations on campus:
  • E8 Science & Engineering Building (Lower Campus Store)
  • E26 Biological Sciences (Upper Campus Store)

For further information click 'Open guide' below or contact EM General services via email

  • You can drop off undamaged single-use or rechargeable batteries of up to D size, old mobile phones and accessories, such as chargers, at the special recycling boxes located around campus including Library Level 2 (near main entrance), Arc Reception or the specific office recycling stations on campus. Find battery drop off locations on the campus sustainability map
  • For larger quantities, complete highlighted fields in the waste inventory form found here. Email the completed form to and a collection will be scheduled.
  • For damaged or leaching batteries, or larger and any other types of batteries request free of charge collection as chemical waste by completing online chemical disposal form here.   

For further information contact EM General services via email . 

Empty toner cartridges can be recycled by placing them in Close the Loop Toner Cartridges Recycling boxes across the campus.

You can register for your own collection box by visiting  Close the Loop. When full, call 1800242473 or book a pick up online. It’s free and easy!

You can recycle any light bulbs and tubes by placing them in the collection box. For the collection point location check  the campus sustainability map. For further information contact Estate Management General Services

At UNSW, we have an extensive paper recycling program in place. Use the blue bins in your building, office space and near your classroom areas.

For further information on paper recycling or to request a new bin contact Estate Management General Services.

UNSW has established allocated collection points for polystyrene disposal across campus. You can take any collected polystyrene to the location close to you. For all locations check the campus sustainability map

For further information contact Estate Management General Services

IT e-waste: UNSW IT and EM General Services has established a free of charge collection and recycling service for IT based e-waste items including laptops, desktops, computer accessories, monitors, monitor stands, server racks, printers, and other relevant equipment. Please book an Archibus request here for e-waste disposal as non-billable and the items will be collected from your nominated location.

White goods and non IT e-waste: Contact EM General Services at

You can recycle eligible return and earn drink containers by putting them in white outdoor bins and help raise funds for sustainable waste management at UNSW.

You can compost all food waste and compostable packaging through outdoor and indoor food waste burgundy bins.