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Waste and Recycling

Recycling and Waste

Queen’s is committed to promoting sustainable waste management through the reduction of waste generation, and by maximising recycling of materials which enter the waste stream. We need the full support of our staff, students and visitors to make this recycling scheme successful.


  • Paper and Card

    All office paper waste for recycling is disposed of via white 'Confidential Waste' sacks provided by the University's waste management contractor and is securely shredded, baled and recycled. The confidential waste sacks must be stored in a secure area prior to collection.

    What can be recycled?

    • Confidential and non-confidential waste paper
    • Computer & Copier Paper
    • Coloured Paper
    • Paper already shredded
    • Envelopes
    • Post it notes
    • Newspapers & Magazines
    • Journals (hard backing should be removed)
    • Catalogues & Phone Books
    • Thin card which can be torn 


    Please contact the Porter’s Office (028 9097 3068) to request the delivery of waste paper recycling sacks and cable ties to your area.

    Paper recycling sacks are collected as part of a twice monthly, Wednesday collection. Where a School/Directorate have sacks ready for collection, the School/Directorate Building Liaison Officer (BLO) should contact the Porter’s Office (3068) before lunch time on Tuesday to be added to the collection schedule.

    Where Schools/Directorates have sacks for collection every week they can be permanently added to the schedule.

    The Waste Contractor should collect all sacks by 4.15pm every Wednesday. If the sacks have not been collected by this time contact Nicola Keown on 028 9097 1167 or

    If your School/Directorate is regularly on the schedule but has more bags than normal, ensure this is communicated (with an approximate number of bags) to the Porters to ensure these can be collected as normal. If the Contractor is not notified of a large additional clear-out, it cannot be guaranteed that this will be completed.

    If you require more bags than normal, please ensure you request extra at least one week in advance.

  • Plastic Bottles

    The plastic bottle bins located across Campus accept coloured and clear plastic bottles.

    If you require a plastic bottle recycling bin, please ensure your School/Directorate Building Liaison Officer (BLO) logs a request via CAFM (Planon).

  • Metal

    The can bins located across Campus accept:

    • aluminium and steel food cans
    • metal biscuit and sweet tins
    • clean tin foil, cake, and pie tins

    If you require a metal can recycling bin, please ensure your School/Directorate Building Liaison Officer (BLO) logs a request via CAFM (Planon). 

  • Glass

    Glass can be recycled at the following locations:

    • Back of the South Dining Hall
    • MBC, Whitla Medical Building
    • Back of the NITC
    • Back of the Health Sciences Building
    • Riddel Hall

    Mixed glass (clear and coloured) can be placed in the glass bins. 

    Please note that laboratory and Pyrex glass, and other non-container glass (e.g. window glass) and crockery cannot be recycled.

  • Cardboard

    All Cardboard is recycled within Queen's. Within your office the collection location for cardboard needs to be pre-organised with your Office Cleaner. 

    All cardboard needs to be flatpacked. 

    Please click here to download a cardboard collection point poster. 

    If you have a large amount of cardboard which needs collected, please ensure your School/Directorate Building Liaison Officer (BLO) logs a request via CAFM (Planon). 

Other Waste

  • Batteries

    Please dispose of your batteries in the 'battery towers' located in the following locations:

    • Administration Building, Level 2
    • Ashby Building
    • Clinical Science A at the Royal Hospital
    • David Keir Building
    • Elms Village
    • Geography
    • Health Sciences Building
    • McClay Library
    • Medical Biology Centre
    • Students Union
    • Whitla Medical Building

    If the battery tower requires emptying, please contact your Building Liaison Officer.

    Larger industrial type batteries, such as lead acid car type batteries and nickel cadmium batteries used in emergency standby systems, should be logged via Planon by your School/Directorate Building Liaison Officer (BLO) with details of the items. 

  • Electrical Equipment

    A request to remove electrical waste should be logged via Planon by your School/Directorate Building Liaison Officer (BLO) with details of the items (i.e. the numbers and type of equipment requiring disposal).

    The table below summarises any charges for the disposal of Waste Electrical and Electronic equipment (WEEE):

    Type of Electrical Equipment


    IT equipment and secure data removal

    No disposal charge. A collection charge may apply.

    Fridges and freezers

    £15 per domestic fridge

    £125 per commercial fridge

    A collection charge may apply.

    White goods

    No disposal charge. A collection charge may apply.

    Laboratory equipment

    No disposal charge. A collection charge may apply.

    Collections will be coordinated via Planon. Please log a request 10 working days in advance of collection date.

    All fridges and freezers must be empty and cleaned prior to disposal.  If this is not undertaken they will not be removed. Please note, if your equipment was in use in a laboratory (or any other potentially hazardous) setting, the disposing School/Unit is responsible for appropriately cleaning the equipment and certifying it as clean, prior to its disposal.

  • Fluorescent Tubes

    Energy efficient bulbs and all types of discharge lamps (such as fluorescent tubes, compact fluorescents, compact fluorescent energy savers, SONs, Mercury, Metal Halide and others) contain toxic metals such as mercury, cadmium, and lead and are classified as hazardous waste. The tubes are recycled into their constituent parts by a specialist waste contractor.

    Please ensure that all fluorescent tubes and energy efficient bulbs are stored in their original packaging. A request to remove any fluorescent tubes and energy efficient bulbs for recycling should be logged via CAFM (Planon) by the School/Directorate Building Liaison Officer (BLO).

  • Print Toners
  • Books

    Once you have received confirmation from your Director/Line Manager/Head of School that the specific books are unwanted, please determine which books are appropriate for 'Better World Books'. Please click here for more information. 

    Once you have determined which books are appropriate for reuse please place the books in ‘Better World Book’ boxes.

    To receive ‘Better World Book’ boxes, and to organise collection of unwanted books, please ensure your School/Directorate Building Liaison Officer (BLO) logs a request via CAFM (Planon).


  • WARPit


    Queen’s has their very own corporate E-bay/Freecycle-style network, called WARPit. It allows staff to redistribute unwanted and underused assets within Queen’s. This avoids unnecessary purchases, saves money, and reduces waste going to landfill.

    There are two scenarios which mean as an organisation our resources are often wasted:

    • Due to limited communications, space and time pressures, we often have to dispose of surplus resources because a new owner cannot be found quickly and easily
    • It is human nature to hoard items that might be needed later – this leads to inefficient use of space as the stored unused resources become obsolete

    Why use WARPit?

    Money: By making sharing resources easy, WARPit helps the University cut procurement costs - by avoiding unnecessary purchases, and by allowing the university to share with other local organisations.

    Embracing a low carbon future: Re-using unwanted items instead of buying new has major environmental benefits – it reduces waste to landfill, cuts carbon emissions and saves natural resource which get depleted when making new items.  WARPit is part of the University’s embracing a low carbon future campaign for a more sustainable university.

    Community: It is also a way of ‘giving back’ to the community. The site allows local organisations (such as schools and local charities) to access any unwanted resources which are unclaimed internally.

    By using WARPit we are also able to create sharing relationships with local charities and partner organisations. These relationships have mutual benefits, as the recipient avoids paying for new items whilst the University will avoid paying taxes and charges associated with waste disposal.

    To sign up go to the Queen’s University Belfast WARPit portal.

    Items claimed on WARPit can be delivered through PlanOn and the Estates Helpdesk. A BLO can log your request using the order group '08 WARPIT'. Please note that the person claiming the WARPit item is responsible for organising its delivery.

  • Ban the Bin

    Ban the Bin

    Queen’s ‘Ban the Bin’ Campaign aims to increase recycling, reduce landfill and make us all conscious of where we dispose of our waste.

    How does it work?

    Individual desk bins are removed. They are replaced with desk top bins and designated recycling points throughout the office.

    How does this improve recycling?

    Removing under-the desk bins while providing sufficient recycling bins as an alternative has been an effective way of reducing the amount of waste sent to landfill.

    • Much of what we throw away can be reused or recycled but having a bin right by your desk provides a temptation not to bother
    • The campaign aims to raise awareness of recycling: getting us really thinking about which bin items of rubbish should go in

    Figures from other schools and directorates that have adopted ‘Ban the Bin’ indicate that recycling has increased by 30%. Areas involved include the MBC, DKB, International and Post Graduate Student Centre, Academic Affairs, Education, HAPP, English, Registrar’s office, Information Services and Estates.

    If you would like to implement ‘Ban the Bin’ in your office, please download our 'Ban the Bin' guide.

  • Clear Outs

    Clear Outs

    If your office is going to undertake a clear out, please to download Queen’s Clear Out Guide. This will provide a step by step process on how to minimise your waste.

  • Waste Management for Events

    Waste Management for Events

    If you are planning a large student or staff event, please download our 'Waste Management Event' Guide. 

Elm’s Accommodation Recycling
Elm's BT1, BT2 and BT9

In Elm’s BT1, BT2 and BT9, all bins are included in accommodation kitchens. It is the responsibility of residents to make sure their bins are used appropriately, with waste segregated, and then emptied as required.

If you have any issues with your bins, please speak to the relevant individuals in your accommodation, either your Residential Assistant in your area, or someone in reception will be able to help point you in the right direction.

Queries for Elm's BT9:
Queries for Elm's BT1:
Queries for Elm's BT2:
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Private Accommodation Recycling
Wider Belfast Area

Areas in Belfast such as the Holylands, Stranmillis and the Lisburn Road have their recycling collected by Belfast City Council. If you move into a house that has no recycling bins, you can order your bins from the Belfast City Council recycling website.

Bins that can be ordered from Belfast City Council include:

  • Glass recycling box
  • Dry mixed recyclables box
  • General waste bin (£15 charge applies)
  • Brown food caddy (countertop bin)
  • And other bins

Belfast City Council recommend you download their Bin-ovation App, which includes information on:

  • Bin and box collections
  • Nearest recycling centres
  • Holiday arrangements, and
  • Items that can go into each of your bins.
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Energy and Carbon Management
Energy and Carbon Management
Sustainable Procurement
Sustainable Procurement