National Recycling Week

This week marks National Recycling Week in the UK, running from 16 to 22 October. 

Set up for Recycle Now as an annual celebration of recycling across the UK, the event is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. 

This year’s theme is The Big Recycling Hunt which focuses on “missed capture”: the items that can be recycled but are commonly missed in the home. 

Missed capture items include empty aerosols, food tins, plastic cleaning and toiletry bottles, pots, tubs and trays. All must be washed out first to be recycled. 

At the University of Birmingham, recycling and waste management is managed through our cleaning and waste services team

We currently recycle everything we can. Anything that can't be recycled – such as black plastic, food waste, and polystyrene – is sent to anaerobic digestion to generate electricity and heat for buildings across the UK. 

A mixed recycling scheme is run across campus that is identifiable by the green recycling bins. These accept: 

  • washed and squashed aluminium and steel cans
  • cardboard
  • mixed paper
  • washed and squashed plastic bottles
  • plastic food containers, tubs, cups, and pots (excl. black plastic)
  • plastic bags and shrink wrap 

Other items can be recycled on campus such as batteries, toner cartridges and larger items, but some of these may require specific intervention from our waste management team

This week is an opportunity to focus on what you can do to recycle more on campus. Any contributions made towards increased sustainable practices in your team can count towards the Green Impact scheme too. 

Next month, Green Week will come to campus. More details will be shared soon. 


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