Recycling at Barnard

New York City can’t do it… but Barnard can!

Barnard College contracts with a private waste management company, Action Carting Environmental Services ( While NYC municipal waste carting is free, Action Carting provides more convenient pick-up times and a greater diversity of services.

This means that Barnard can recycle much more than New York City. So read on and learn how to recycle on campus and remember that the first step is to reduce our consumption!

Separate your waste into…

click each group for more information

+Plastics, Glass, Metal


+Special items (Batteries, light bulbs, e-waste)

+Garbage (i.e. to the landfill)

The container with a green lid and two circles is for all plastics, metal, and glass with specifics below.


  • You may recycle plastics #1 through #7 of any shape!
  • Cardboard milk and juice containers with wax coatings.
  • Plastic bags can be recycled at Westside Market, Fairway, and Whole Foods.


  • Metal cans of all types (soda cans, soup cans, paint cans) and aluminum foil.


  • Glass containers and bottles of any shape.

The container with the blue lid is for all paper with specifics below.


  • Computer paper of any color, non-corrugated thin cardboard, and cardstock
  • Cardboard egg cartons
  • Note: these items must be clean – free of grease, wire binding, etc.

Special Items

Barnard has multiple recycling centers on campus to recycle special items located in the basement of Sulzberger, the basement of Plimpton, outside the elevators of Altschul on the ground floor, and opposite the north elevators in the Diana on the first floor. Here you can recycle the following items:

Light BulBs:

  • Any light bulbs may be recycled here including CFLs (Compact fluorescent lights)
  • It is important to recycling light bulbs rather than dumping them into the garbage because of possible chemicals within the bulbs.


  • All batteries may be recycled here.
  • Again, it is very important to recycle batteries rather than sending them to the landfill because of the toxic chemicals found within batteries.


  • Drop old books here to be donated.

Toner Cartridges:

  • Recycle your empty toner cartridges here.


  • Recycle your e-waste here… this includes old cellphones, chargers, computers, etc.

Garbage (i.e. to the landfill)

This is really a last resort. Landfills are incredibly detrimental to the environment as well as the communities where they are located. Landfills are finite spaces and have carrying capacities. In addition, it takes fuel and energy to transport trash to landfills.

So it is very important that we not only reduce our consumption and waste but also divert waste from landfills for the health of our communities and environment.

Have more questions? click here for faq.