None of UCL's office waste is sent to landfill. Reducing waste and making sure waste materials are recycled are essential to creating a more sustainable UCL.
We currently recycle around 60% of our waste and aim to increase this number to 85%. None of our waste goes to landfill
- Office Recyclables
The majority of materials discarded from UCL’s offices are recyclable, including but not limited to:
- Drinks cans
- Cardboard cups
- Small quantities of glass
- Hand towels
Bins for recyclable materials are put into offices, kitchens and laboratories and are denoted by a clear bag. The clear bag bin liners are removed by the our cleaning contractors Sodexo, and taken to the building’s designated waste collection point. The clear bags containing recyclable materials are kept separate from blue bags containing residual wastes.
Approximately 95% of the load is sorted into recyclable fractions; the remaining 5% is taken to the Cory Energy from Waste plant at Belvedere where it is incinerated with energy recovery.
Small quantities of glass (typically one or two items) may be put into the clear bags used for recyclable materials. Quantities are limited to prevent the glass from breaking and causing injury to cleaners and others who handle the bags.
Larger quantities of glass many be disposed of in one of two ways:
- Please take glass directly to one of the glass recycling bins located around the UCL campus.
- Raise a service request with the Estates helpdesk. Please place glass in a strong cardboard box for collection.
The glass is crushed and used as road aggregate.
Glass recycling bins are emptied once a week by Suez, the Sodexo waste contractor. Suez and Sodexo complete a waste transfer note annually which is available on request.
For any laboratory glass waste, please refer to UCL's laboratory waste procedures.
- Toner cartridges (including inkjet cartridges)
Departments can use any cardboard box to collect/store used toner cartridges. When the box is ¾ full you can raise an Estates service request and the UCL porters will empty it. Toner waste is removed by Suez to be treated at the specialist hazardous waste processor Cleansing Service Group.
Please note, no packaging (plastic/cardboard) is to be placed inside the box, only the printer consumables.
Any packaging can be disposed via the recycling/general waste bins on site.
Many UCL buildings have a battery recycling bin located near the main building entrance or reception. They are then transferred to a battery recycling facility where they are broken down into their component metals for recycling.
For any unusual requirement such as a large number of batteries or batteries of an unusual type, please raise a service request through the Estates helpdesk providing details of your requirement.
- Bulky items (including furniture)
Large items which are not covered above are handled as bulky items. All reusable items should be listed on Warpit.
For unusable bulky items, please raise a service request through the Estates customer Help Desk for collection. Items will be inspected, segregated and stored in a skip assigned to bulky items before being reused or recycled depending on the condition of the item.
92% of the output from the transfer station is recycled and the remaining is sent to create energy from waste.
Contractors provide a waste transfer note which is kept for two years and is available on request.
- Confidential waste
If you have confidential papers, office shredders are available to use across UCL. For the bulk destruction of confidential papers, please raise a service request through the Estates helpdesk, who will provide confidential waste sacks which are collected by our cleaning contractors Sodexo and transferred to secure storage. From here is it collected on request and taken to a secure off-site facility where it is shredded in accordance with BS EN 15713:2009. Destruction takes place within 3 hours of leaving UCL and a certificate of destruction is authorised.
Contractors ShredIt and Sodexo complete a waste transfer note on each visit which available on request. The shredded contents are taken to a paper mill where it is recycled in to copier paper (Evolve) or tissue paper (Velvet). Security is maintained at every stage.
Other confidential waste
If you have other types of confidential waste, please raise a service request with the Estates helpdesk and provide details of your requirements.
Digital confidential waste
Digital confidential waste is handled in the same manner as hazardous WEEE.