Recycling in Tompkins County is mandatory and easy since Tompkins County switched to single stream recycling - now you don't even need to separate out your containers from paper! It can all just be put together in the same bin!

WHAT ELSE to recycle?

  • Learn how to recycle in campus offices, residential halls and apartments, and off campus apartments from the quick guide documents on the right sidebar!
  • Find out how to recycle your e-waste (electronic waste) in the guide to your right!
  • Check out The World's Shortest Comprehensive Recycling Guide
  • Call our Recycling Hotline at (607) 274-1777 if you have any questions

Pro recycling tips

  • Do not use plastic bags to collect your recycling
  • Empty and rinse containers
  • Remove caps and lids
  • If possible, flatten milk cartons and drink boxes
  • Remove straws from drink boxes
  • Staples, paper clips, rubber bands and envelope windows are okay
  • Flatten cardboard boxes (cardboard that does not fit in the recycling bin can be placed next to it)

WHY recycle?

Recycling makes good sense for our natural environment, our economy, and us. Instead of using materials once, throwing them away in a landfill and then replacing them with new raw materials, you can recycle - this will reduce pollution from the manufacturing process, reduce energy that would otherwise be used to create new materials, and conserve natural resources. If protecting the planet isn't motivation enough, recycling also saves money because things made from recycled content use less energy to produce than raw materials!

Keep in mind that here at IC, we have to pay to get rid of our trash, but we are paid for what we recycle. It's kind of like getting paid twice for recycling - we save the money from not throwing it away and we get paid to recycle! It just makes sense. For more information, click here!


RecycleMania is a recycling competition among colleges and and universities across the U.S. It began in 2001, and IC has been participating since 2005. Over a 10-week period, schools compete to see which institution can collect the largest amount of recyclables from residence halls, on-campus apartments and dining halls. Schools report measurements on a weekly basis in pounds recycled per on-campus student. The university that recycles the most wins! Click here for more details.

Please see the navigation bar for more instructions on what, how, and when to recycle both on and off-campus!