Residence Hall Recycling and Composting
UNC’s recycling program makes Residence Hall recycling easy. Every residence hall room is provided with a blue tote for students to collect all recyclable materials, including newspapers and magazines, bottles and cans, and mixed paper. This blue tote is part of each room’s equipment/furniture.
Take the recycling that you collect in the tote to the nearest Outdoor Site (blue carts located near your residence hall’s dumpster site) and separated into the appropriate roll carts.
Residential Green Games
Residential Green Games is a student-run environmental competition among the fifteen housing communities at UNC. Green Games seeks to promote student awareness regarding issues of campus sustainability, energy and water conservation, waste reduction, recycling and other environmental concerns. The aim is to present opportunities for students to learn about these issues from one another and then we encourage them to incorporate what they’ve learned into their daily routines and lives here at UNC.
NEW! Plastic Film Recycling
At the end of the fall semester 2018, plastic film recycling locations were installed behind the community desks in each residence hall community. The collection containers were furnished by RHA, and are serviced by OWRR staff. For information about what you can recycle with plastic film, please see this flyer.
Don’t Ditch It, Donate It is making great things happen with the good stuff UNC students leave behind! Our students end up with a lot of stuff at the end of the year, and when they move out for the summer they can’t take it all with them. Futons, carpets, televisions, desk lamps, binders, food, school supplies, microwaves… If these valuable items didn’t find their way into the donation bin, they would be landfilled.
- Empty and flatten cardboard boxes used for packing.
- Bring these boxes to the blue recycling dumpsters located next to all trash dumpsters on campus. Look for special large containers labeled for cardboard recycling only.
- Please be sure all packing material has been removed from boxes. DO NOT put plastic wrap or foam packing material in the cardboard recycling dumpsters.
- Please place any regular trash in the appropriately labeled dumpster. Trash dumpsters on campus are usually green or gray in color.
- Keep an eye out for shrink wrap and Styrofoam recycling areas at each residence hall recycling site!
- Pack in reusable crates and bags, save them for move-out
- Pack conservatively – consider bringing winter items up later
- Remove tubes from carpet rolls before arriving on-campus (request they be removed at the store)
- Remove appliances from boxes before arrival (especially fans)
- Recycle any cardboard that is produced
Note: Cardboard is banned from the Orange County landfill. Every year the University pays thousands of dollars in fines from people disposing of this material in the regular trash. Don’t trash UNC. Please recycle!
Locations and Maps (Images)
Locations and Maps (PDFs)
|1351 Mason Farm Rd.||Baity Hill||South Campus||15|
|1401 Mason Farm Rd.||Baity Hill||South Campus||16|
|1501 Mason Farm Rd.||Baity Hill||South Campus||17|
|1503 Mason Farm Rd.||Baity Hill||South Campus||18|
|Alumni Hall||Olde Campus Upper Quad||North Campus||10|
|Aycock||Olde Campus Lower Quad||North Campus||8|
|Coates||223 E. Franklin Street||North Campus||1|
|Craige North||Manning West||South Campus||26|
|Ehringhaus East||Ehringhaus||South Campus||22|
|Ehringhaus North||Ehringhaus||South Campus||21|
|Emerson Drive||Olde Campus Upper Quad||North Campus||11|
|Hardin||Manning West||South Campus||27|
|Hinton James||Hinton James||South Campus||23|
|Horton||Manning East||South Campus||24|
|Jackson Hall||Olde Campus Lower Quad||North Campus||9|
|Koury||Manning East||South Campus||25|
|Ram Village 2||Ram Village||South Campus||29|
|Ram Village 3||Ram Village||South Campus||30|
|Ram Village 5||Ram Village||South Campus||31|
|Taylor Hall||Ram Village||South Campus||32|
When I Move Out, What Do I Do With…
What do I do with my personal compost bucket?
If you checked out a compost bucket through the room enhancement program, you can hold on to it for use next year! If you’re unable to keep it for reuse, the bins can be recycled since they’re made of recyclable plastic.
What do I do with all my other stuff I’m not keeping?
Check out our Don’t Ditch It, Donate It guide below!
Don’t Ditch It. Donate It!
As you start packing for move-out from the residence halls, you may discover that you’ve collected a lot more “junk” than you arrived with. You’ll probably decide that some of this stuff will have to go, but don’t throw it away! Other people can use items you think are junk, and you don’t need to go very far to find a place to donate your stuff.
Though it may be tempting, remember that individuals are not permitted to enter dumpsters or remove items from donation stations. The only groups that are permitted to remove items from dumpster sites and donation stations are TROSA, OWRR, and Housing Support. More information.
For more move-out donation information, visit UNC Housing’s website.
|Recyclable and Donatable Materials||Drop-Off Location|
|Athletic Equipment||Donation Station|
|Bottles and Cans||Blue Recycling Carts, Outside|
|Cardboard||Blue Cardboard Dumpster, Outside|
|Cleaning Supplies||Donation Station|
|Electronics (Broken and Working)||Donation Station|
|Food, Unopened and Non-Perishable||Donation Station|
|Futon Frames||Place Next to Dumpster, Outside|
|Paper||Blue Recycling Carts, Outside|
|School and Office Supplies||Donation Station|
|Scrap Metal||Place Next to Dumpster, Outside|
|Toiletries and Personal Items, Unopened||Donation Station|
|Wood Waste, Clean and Untreated||Place Next to Dumpster, Outside|
|Wood Waste, Treated or Painted||Place in Open Top Dumpster (Rolloff)|
How to Prepare Items to Donate
- Appliances should be in good working order.
- Broken appliances should be discarded in the open-top dumpsters. Please do not place broken appliances in the closed-top dumpsters.
- Athletic equipment should be cleaned and in working order.
- Please clean and fold bedding before donating.
- Textbooks, novels, and paperbacks should be readable with the binding still intact.
- Please place unusable books in the mixed paper recycling.
- Please clean, vacuum, roll, and tie the carpets with the print side FACING OUT. Please leave them INSIDE in the donation station areas. If the area is full, please leave them adjacent to the dumpsters, but not inside.
- Please do not dispose of carpet in the closed-top dumpsters.
- Unopened, unused cleaning supplies may be placed in the donation stations.
- Clothes should be clean and ready for donation
- We cannot accept undergarments.
- Shoes should match and be tied together.
- Please dispose of dirty, stained, or torn clothes in the dumpster.
- All electronics may be placed in the donation stations. Electronics will be donated to TROSA for reuse, repair and resale.
- Must be unopened, unused, and in good condition (not past its expiration date).
- Non-perishable food only, please.
- Please dispose of opened foods. Cans may be rinsed and recycled in the blue outdoor carts.
- All furniture or household appliances should be clean and in good working order.
- Broken furniture may be left outside in the open-top dumpsters adjacent to the permanent dumpster area. (Please do not place broken furniture, scrap metal, or appliances in the regular dumpsters).
- Place futon frames (and other scrap metal) next to the outdoor dumpster sites for recycling.
School and Office Supplies
- Composition books, notebooks, and paper should be free of any writing.
- Implements (pens, staplers, etc.) should be in good working order.
- Please place any used notebooks and other paper in the mixed paper recycling.
- Shoes should match and be tied together at the donation station.
Toiletries and Personal Items
- Bath and personal products should be unopened and unused.
- Please dispose of any unwanted used products. Rinse bottles and recycle in the blue outdoor carts.
- Clean, untreated wood waste may be placed next to the outside dumpster for recycling.
- Treated or painted wood waste should be placed in the open-top dumpster.
If you have questions about additional materials, please contact us at 919-962-1442 or email@example.com.
|Residence Hall||TROSA Donation Station||Extra Trash Containers|
|Alderman||Kenan 1st floor TV lounge||open top rolloff|
|Alexander||Joyner 1st floor lounge|
|Avery||Avery 1st floor lounge||closed dumpster|
|Aycock||2nd floor study lounge #235||closed dumpster|
|Baity Hill||Two PODS in exterior parking lot||open top rolloff (BLDG 1503), trailer|
|Carmichael||Carmichael Multipurpose room||open top rolloff|
|Cobb||Cobb 1st floor piano lounge||open top rolloff|
|Connor||Pavilion 2nd floor lounge||open top rolloff|
|Craige||Basement elevator lobby||open top rolloff|
|Craige North||Basement lounge #B32||open top rolloff|
|Ehringhaus||Ehaus Basement Lounge/Mail Room||2 open top rolloffs|
|Everett||Everett 1st floor Lounge||open top rolloff|
|Graham||2nd floor study lounge #235||closed dumpster|
|Granville||POD, Agora Side|
|Grimes||Mangum 1st floor lounge||open top rolloff (Emerson Dr.)|
|Hardin||Morrison 1st floor theater||open top rolloff|
|Hinton James||Hinton James 1st floor multipurpose lounge||open top rolloff|
|Horton||Hinton James 1st floor Game Room||open top rolloff|
|Joyner||Joyner 1st floor lounge||open top rolloff|
|Kenan||Kenan 1st floor TV lounge||open top rolloff|
|Koury||Koury Basement Lounge #B87||open top rolloff|
|Lewis||Lewis 1st floor lounge||open top rolloff|
|Mangum||Mangum 1st floor lounge||open top rolloff (Emerson Dr)|
|Manly||Mangum 1st floor lounge||open top rolloff (Emerson Dr)|
|McIver||Kenan 1st floor TV lounge||open top rolloff|
|Morrison||Morrison 1st floor lounge||open top rolloff|
|Old East||Old West 1st floor lounge|
|Old West||Old West 1st floor lounge|
|Parker||Avery 1st floor lounge||open top rolloff|
|Ram Village 1||RV 1 Basement Multi-Purpose Room||open top rolloff|
|Ram Village 2||RV 1 Basement Multi-Purpose Room||open top rolloff|
|Ram Village 3||RV 1 Basement Multi-Purpose Room||open top rolloff|
|Ram Village 5||1st floor reading room||open top rolloff|
|Ruffin||Mangum 1st floor lounge||open top rolloff (Emerson Dr.)|
|Spencer||Spencer 1st floor parlor||closed dumpster (next to Joyner)|
|Stacy||Everett 1st floor lounge|
|Taylor||Taylor Basement Elevator Lobby||open top rolloff|
|Teague||Basement multi-purpose room||open top rolloff|
|Winston||Pavilion 2nd floor lounge||open top rolloff|
Carpet and Scrap Metal Sites
- All scrap metal (including futon frames) should be placed in the designated Bulky Waste sites next to the dumpsters and extra containers.
- The sites will be marked by labeled orange cones.
- The materials will be picked up and recycled.
- Do not place futon frames and carpet in the dumpsters.
Donation stations inside residence halls, as well as extra trash containers and bulky waste containers outside residence halls will be in place by Friday, April 28. Thank you for disposing of your waste properly and donating usable materials!
Extra trash containers will be placed next to or near the permanent dumpster sites unless otherwise noted.
Contact us at 919-962-1442 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions about your move-out waste locations.
If you are interested in an end-of-year-move-out collection point at your apartment complex for clean, dry clothing, canned foods and usable household goods, contact our office and we will work with you to set up such a site and help provide publicity to your residents as they prepare to move out. Our office would provide a set of labeled, clean roll carts during the month of May. Your obligation would be to publicize the program, locate carts in a secure, dry area that is easily accessible for residents. Periodic policing will help ensure that the contents are usable and sanitary. Let us know if you would like a set of roll carts for clothing, canned goods and small household items.
Reusable furniture and other household items in good condition can be offered for reuse at “Salvage Sheds” located at Solid Waste Convenience Centers except for BVradshaw Quarry Rd. Used mattresses can NOT be left at Solid Waste Convenience Centers.
Solid Waste Convenience Centers have recycling collection for bottles, cans, jars, mixed paper, newspaper, magazines, non-bottle plastics such as yogurt tubs and stadium cups and corrugated cardboard. Recycle all batteries, motor oil, antifreeze, televisions, computers, cell phones and other electronic devices there too!
Electronics can also be recycled at the Orange County Landfill on Eubanks Rd. in Chapel Hill. Hours are Monday – Friday 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday 7:30 a.m. to noon.
Clothing and household items in good condition can be donated to local charities and pick-up can be arranged for large loads.
- PTA Thrift Shop Village Plaza, S. Elliott Rd, Chapel Hill 919-942-6101
- Club Nova Thrift Shop, 103-C West Main Street, Carrboro 919-967-6985.
Furniture and appliances in good condition can be picked up by the Habitat for Humanity Hand-Me-Up store. Appliances must work and be less than 10 years old. Call 919-403-8668 to schedule a collection if you can’t drop your items off at 5501 Durham-Chapel Hill Boulevard, Durham, NC 27707.
Donate unopened cans and boxes of non-perishable food items and unused personal care items to the Inter-Faith Council Food Pantry at 110 West Main Street in Carrboro, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays. If you need to make special arrangements for weekend drop-off, call them at 919-929-6380 ext. *16. Unserved perishable food can be brought directly to the Community House Facility at 100 W. Rosemary St.
Styrofoam packing peanuts and bubble wrap should be brought to local packaging companies like “Pack It Ship It” at MidTown Market on Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, or UPS packaging stores throughout the County. Packing materials should not be left at the recycling dropoff sites.
Metal cans, plastic bottles, glass bottles and jars and all clean, dry paper including, newspapers, phonebooks, envelopes, junk mail, class notes, can be recycled at all five of the 24-hour recycling drop-off sites.
- Cedar Falls Park: Weaver Dairy Road
- University Mall: Mall parking lot behind the gas station on Estes Drive
- Carrboro Plaza: Behind ABC Store in southeast corner of the Plaza
- Meadowmont: Behind Harris Teeter (this is the least used site)
- Hampton Pointe Shopping Plaza: Hwy 86 in Hillsborough behind Home Depot
If the site is full, please take the recyclables to another site (usually Meadowmont site or Hampton Pointe site at Home Depot in Hillsborough are underutilized). Never ever leave plastic bags at a drop-off site. Take clean, dry empty plastic or paper bags to grocery stores to be recycled.
Hazardous Waste such as “CFLs” (compact fluorescent lights), paint, hair spray, bug spray, drain cleaner and any flammable, toxic or corrosive liquids should be taken to the Hazardous Household Waste (HHW) Collection at the Orange County Landfill on Eubanks Road. HHW is open Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday 7:30 a.m. to noon.
Please contact Orange County Solid Waste Management if you have any move-out questions!
The ResHall Composting pilot program was launched in the spring semester of 2014 at four residential communities.
Currently, all residence hall communities besides Granville Towers have compost carts just outside, or near their communities. Some communities share a compost cart with other communities. Compost carts may either be green or black, but both should be clearly labeled for compostables only and clearly distinct from the blue recycling carts. (Pictures to the right.) Residents in these communities can check out a small compost bin for personal use and then empty their food scraps into the outdoor community collection cart provided by OWRR. The bins are airtight and are small enough to fit in a mini-fridge. Residents are responsible for regularly emptying and cleaning their personal bins and may keep their bins for the following year, or recycle it at the end of the year. The carts outside the communities are emptied twice weekly by OWRR and combined with the rest of Carolina’s compostables, which are sent to Brooks Contractor.
Program Updates: New Guidelines!
What CAN now be composted:
- ALL food waste and table scraps
- Soiled paper products (i.e. napkins, paper towels)
- Compostable packaging (i.e. most to-go boxes from the Bottom of Lenoir)
- Tea and coffee grounds, filters
- Hair and nail trimmings
What still CANNOT be composted:
- Plastic, including bags and plastic flatware
- Metal, including foil
- Rubber, latex
Residence Hall Compost Flyer
Download a copy of the Residence Hall Compost Flyer
Questions? Contact OWRR or Ask The Compost Cow (see video below)!
Frequently Asked Questions
- How do I compost at my residence hall?
- If you live in one of the participating communities, you are in luck! You can check out a personal compost bin from your community office through the RHA Enhancements program.
- Check out a bin from your community’s main office
- Collect your food scraps and organic waste
- Empty your bin about once a week into the green outdoor collection bin by the dumpster site in your community
- Keep your bin clean
- Keep your bin for the following year or recycle it at the end of year!*
*This is a different procedure from last year. Residents are NOT required to return bins at the end of the year!
- What can I compost at my residence hall?
- COMPOST: ALL food waste, soiled napkins and compostable packaging, coffee grounds/filters, tea bags, yard waste, hair and nail trimmings
DO NOT COMPOST: metal, glass, plastic (including flatware and plastic bags), rubber, chemicals, other non-biodegradable materials
- Why compost?
- The primary purpose of composting is to divert food waste from landfills while creating a naturally sustainable fertilizer which returns nutrients back to the soil.
Food waste doesn’t biodegrade in a landfill. Landfills are designed so that organic material doesn’t break down rapidly. Over time in a landfill, buried organic materials break down anaerobically (without oxygen) and produce methane (a greenhouse gas with a warming potential about 25 times that of carbon dioxide).
But food “waste” doesn’t need to go to waste! Through composting, it can be turned into nutrient rich soil amendment. Though there are a variety of methods, the end result is always compost, which improves soil structure, has benefits for erosion and runoff control, returns macro and micronutrients to the soil, and stabilizes soil pH. As you can see, there are many reasons to compost!
- What is compost? What is it used for and what are its benefits?
- Compost is defined by the US Composting Council as “is the product resulting from the controlled decomposition of organic material that has been sanitized through the generation of heat and stabilized to the point that it is beneficial to plant growth.”
Some uses and benefits of compost:
- Improves the soil structure, porosity, and density, thus creating a better plant root environment.
- Increases infiltration and permeability of heavy soils, thus reducing erosion and runoff.
- Improves water holding capacity, thus reducing water loss and leaching in sandy soils.
- Supplies a variety of macro and micronutrients.
- May control or suppress certain soil-borne plant pathogens.
- Supplies significant quantities of organic matter.
- Improves cation exchange capacity (CEC) of soils and growing media, thus improving their ability to hold nutrients for plant use.
- Supplies beneficial microorganisms to soils and growing media.
- Improves and stabilizes soil pH.
- Can bind and degrade specific pollutants.
Visit the U.S. Composting Council to learn more about composting and its benefits.