[Skip to Content]

Recycling Support

Return to Computer/LAN room

Design Guidance

Overall Strategies

Recycling support stations are the backbone of a successful waste diversion plan. Well labeled and strategically placed recycling containers support ease of occupant participation. Industry-wide best practices, as available by region, support single stream recycling, eliminating trash cans at each desk in favor of recycling containers and implementing a composting program for break room and restroom waste.

Recycling containers

Recycling bins come in a variety of shapes and sizes to help keep recyclables organized and pest-free. There are large bins for breakroom and copy areas and small bins to be placed under desks. There are aesthetically pleasing bins, carts, and containers designed for all recycling waste streams. There are also bins that are made from recycled materials. Bins may require occasional cleaning to avoid fostering an environment conducive for pests.

Electronic Waste

Small electronics and batteries should be collected and diverted from the waste stream because of their high concentrations of acids and heavy metals. Local collection points can be located in LAN rooms or another spot that is accessible in an office, with a centralized collection point included with trash and recycling.

Green Tips

  • Provide well labeled recycle, compost and trash containers in common areas.
  • Educate occupants and janitorial staff to encourage participation and reduced contamination.
  • Work with waste and recycling vendor to ensure compliance with current requirements.
  • Consider replacing trash cans at each desk with single stream recycling bins to encourage occupant participation. Provide both trash and recycling bins in communal areas.
  • If trash receptacles must remain at each desk use trash side-saddle trash containers on the recycle container as depicted in this rendering.
  • Research your local composting options, often restroom trash can be composted.
  • As equipment reaches its end of life ensure that it is properly diverted from the landfill. Computer equipment contains chemicals that are harmful to the environment if left to leach into soils.

Compare Recycling Support Options

EB = Existing BuildingsNC = New Construction and Major Renovation

Legal Requirements

Guiding Principles

  • Waste and Materials Management ( Guiding Principles, Executive Order 13693 [NC])
    Section: V. Reduce Environmental Impact of Materials

    Incorporate adequate space, equipment, and transport accommodations for recycling in the building design. During a project's planning stage, identify local recycling and salvage operations that could process site-related construction and demolition materials. During construction, recycle or salvage at least 50 percent of the non-hazardous construction, demolition and land clearing materials, excluding soil, where markets or onsite recycling opportunities exist. Provide salvage, reuse and recycling services for waste generated from major V. Reduce Environmental Impact of Materials renovations, where markets or onsite recycling opportunities exist.

  • Waste Diversion ( Guiding Principles, Executive Order <span>13693</span> [NC])
    Section: V. Reduce the Environmental Impact of Materials

    From the Guiding Principles for NC: “Incorporate appropriate space, equipment, and transport accommodations for collection, storage, and staging of recyclable and, as appropriate, compostable materials in building design, construction, renovation, and operation. During construction, where markets or on-site recycling exist, divert at least 50% (by weight) of construction and demolition materials, excluding land clearing debris and material used as alternative daily cover, from landfills. Maximize reuse or recycling of building materials, products, and supplies wherever possible. Provide reuse and recycling services, including composting, for building occupants, where markets or on-site recycling exist, and divert at least 50% of non-hazardous and non-construction related materials (by weight), from landfills.”
    Determining Compliance: “Where markets exist, provide reuse and recycling services for building occupants and divert at least 50% of non-hazardous, nonconstruction related materials from landfills.”

  • Waste Diversion ( Guiding Principles, Executive Order <span>13693</span> [EB])
    Section: V. Reduce the Environmental Impact of Materials

    From the Guiding Principles for EB: “During alteration and repair projects, where markets or on-site recycling exist, divert at least 50% (by weight) of construction and demolition materials, excluding land clearing debris and material used as alternative daily cover, from landfills. Provide reuse and recycling services, including composting, for building occupants where markets or on-site recycling exist, and divert at least 50% of non-hazardous and non-construction related materials (by weight) from landfills. Provide salvage, reuse, and recycling services for waste generated from building operations, maintenance, repair and minor renovations, and discarded furnishings, equipment, and property.”
    Determining Compliance: “Where markets exist, provide reuse and recycling services for building occupants and divert at least 50% of non-hazardous nonconstruction related materials from landfills”