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Recycling for students in Aberdeen

Welcome to Aberdeen! Whether you are studying here for one term or four years, remember to recycle and reuse as much as you can  read on to find out how to get started. By recycling and supporting reuse you will be doing your bit to help the environment, keep your neighbours happy, your community tidy, and cut the amount of waste that goes into landfill.

Recycling at student halls Lady recycling food waste

At most university-owned halls there are facilities to recycle paper and cardboard, glass, plastic bottles and metal items, as well as food waste recycling bins.

All privately-owned halls have access to food waste recycling bins but other recycling facilities vary. If there are no recycling facilities on-site, you can use one of the nearby Recycling Points check the map to find your closest one.


Recycling in private rented accommodation

If you live in a privately rented house or flat, you could have either a fortnightly Kerbside Mixed Recycling service or communal mixed recycling bins on your street.


Top tips for making recycling easy and convenient

  • Find out what recycling service is available in your area check the links above or contact the Recycling Team if you're still not sure.
  • Get the containers you need. You can order recycling containers or liners online
  • Make sure you know what you can recycle. Find out more about the Kerbside Mixed Recycling service or the communal mixed recycling bins. Please make sure you put the right stuff in the right bin. If the wrong items go in, contamination occurs which may mean that it isn't possible to recycle your materials.
  • Keep some spare kitchen caddy liners for food waste recycling so you don't run out. You can order recycling containers or liners online or pick some up from your nearest collection point.
  • Be a good housemate set up a system for gathering the recycling together and a rota for taking the food waste and recycling out.
  • Be a good neighbour once your recycling containers have been collected, take them off the street and store them until the next collection day.
  • If you have kerbside recycling, print a copy of the Household Waste Collection Calendar to stick up as a reminder.

Moving out

If you are moving out of your room or flat, please reuse or recycle as many items as you can. Here's how: Man at clothes recycling bank

  • Donate unwanted clothes, books, CDs, DVDs and household items to one of the local charity shops in Aberdeen. There are also clothing banks dotted around the city at various Recycling Points




  • Call the National Reuse Phoneline on 0800 0665 820 to arrange a free pick up of good quality furniture and electrical items. They work with local charities to come and collect your unwanted items and pass them on to someone who needs them.
  • Pass items on using Freecycle or sell them on Gumtree, Ebay or a Swap and Sell group on Facebook.
  • You can recycle old or broken electrical items at any Household Waste Recycling Centre. Anything with a plug or a battery can be recycled, whether the item is small (such as computers, mobile phones, lamps, toasters) or large (TVs, fridges, washing machines etc).
  • If you have extra rubbish, take it to a local Household Waste Recycling Centre for free disposal and recycling or arrange a bulky waste collection.

Cutting down on food waste

Recycling food is important but it is much better to try and avoid wasting it in the first place. The link below has some useful tips to help you throw away less food:

Student Engagement: Environment Group

The Environment Group was established in 2015 and consists of staff and student representatives from Robert Gordon's University, the University of Aberdeen, North East Scotland College and the Recycling Team at Aberdeen City Council. The group meet up once every two months. The minutes of these group meetings are available below: 

Minutes of Meeting 23rd Aug 2016

Minutes of Meeting 17th May 2016

Minutes of Meeting 8th March 2016

Minutes of meeting 19th Jan 2016

Minutes of Meeting 4th Nov 2015

The aim of the group is to share information about upcoming events and activities, plan joint initiatives and discuss ways of working together to promote student's awareness of waste and recycling in Aberdeen. In January/February 2016, the Environment Group worked in partnership to promote the Love Your Caddy campaign through sharing the poster and information about the film screening through their various student engagement channels.

Since then the group has continued to develop and grow, with recent presentations from Adekunle Oke (PhD Researcher from RGU) and William McPherson (Re-Tek). We welcome guest speakers on the theme of waste and recycling and student engagement so if you are interested in coming along then please get in touch with Tanita Addario for further information.

Get in touch

If you would like more information or advice about recycling and reuse options in Aberdeen, please contact the Recycling Team. You can also likethe Recycle for Aberdeen Facebook page or follow the Recycle for Aberdeen blog for updates.



Go back to the Household Waste and Recycling homepage