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Are plastic bags recyclable on campus?

No, plastic bags and other flexible plastics are not currently recyclable through our Single-Stream Recycling Program, so they should be placed in the trash.  Efforts are being made to make flexible plastics recycling available on campus.  In the meantime, please do your part by using reusable bags whenever possible to reduce waste.

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Are plastics such as yogurt containers recyclable?

Yes, but they should be clean, empty, and dry.  Also, please be sure to remove any lids or foil seals from the container before placing the container into a recycling bin. 

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Can batteries be recycled?

Batteries can be recycled, but they can only be batteries that were used on campus. No batteries that were used for personal use can be recycled. Contact the recycling office to find out how and where batteries can be recycled on campus.

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Can I bring recycling from home?

No.  Unfortunately, the cost of recycling has increased drastically over the past few years due to foreign policy and international market changes.  Just a few short years ago, we were getting paid for our recycling material.  Now, we pay more per ton to recycle than we would if we just placed everything in the trash.  This doesn't mean we won't still be recycling, it just means that we need your help keeping our costs down by doing the right thing

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Can I recycle cereal box material here?

Yes, as long as they are empty and flattened.  Please remove any flexible plastic bags or lining from inside of the box before placing it in a single-stream recycling bin

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Can I recycle pizza boxes with regular corrugated cardboard?

No, pizza boxes contain grease or food residue that prevents the cardboard from being recyclable. If a box is clean and free of food and grease, it may be put in any single-stream recycling bin or dumpster. Many times, the lid of a pizza box will be clean and can be recycled as long as it is removed from the contaminated section and placed into a recycling bin.

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Does the University offer shredding services for sensitive documents?

Yes, the recycling department offers shredding services for university documents.

Once per year, usually during the summer, the University schedules a free shredding event.  During this event, faculty, staff, and students are welcome to bring in their personal documents for free shredding.

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Do I have to remove staples before recycling blend paper?

No, staples and paper clips are fine. Things to watch out for are the black, plastic clips and rubber bands.

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Do I have to separate white and colored paper?

No, all paper and cardboard can be mixed together in the same single-stream recycling bin or dumpster provided they are clean and dry.  Please do not place any paper towel, tissue paper, paper plates, hardcover books, or food soiled paper products into recycling bins.  These items are not currently recyclable

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Do I need to sort glass by color?

In the past, the answer to this question has been yes, but now we collect glass that has been mixed. As always, the lids must be removed and the bottles rinsed before placing them into the recycling bins. Certain kinds of glass including ceramics, dishware, mirrors, light bulbs, and drinking glasses are a different type of glass than beverage and food containers and cannot be recycled.

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Do I have to take the caps off of bottles and rinse all containers?

Yes, caps are not recycled and can cause issues with sorting equipment at the Materials Recycling Facility.  Even though bottle caps are often made of the same polymers as items we do recycle, their size causes issues.  General rule of thumb:  if an item is smaller than a credit card, it is not recyclable.

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How can I get a recycle bin for my office?

Staff working at Villanova University are eligible to receive a  single-stream recycling bin and a trash can to put near their desk. If you need a recycling bin for your office, please submit a work request or contact the recycling office at 610-519-4466 or

Trash containers are supplied through the Custodial Department and need a seperate request

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What can I do with styrofoam?

Styrofoam cannot currently be recycled in our market area; however, some of it can be reused. Styrofoam packing peanuts can be reused for shipping purposes.

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Where can I recycle magazines?

Any single-stream recycling bin or dumpster.

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Are hardcover books recyclable?

No, hardcover books are not and never have been recyclable unless you remove the cover and binding.  Placing hardcover books in a recycling bin or dumpster without first removing the cover and binding could result in an entire truckload of recycling being trashed for contamination.

Please consider donating unwanted books before recycling them.  Reuse is ALWAYS better than recycling!

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