Plastics don’t belong in the food scraps bin. Please do your part and Sort It Out. At UBC, we separate most of our waste into four streams: food scraps, containers, paper and garbage.

Why sort?

Using UBC recycling stations to sort food scraps and recyclables out of the garbage means these materials will be used again, and not sent to the landfill. You’ll see the Sort it Out stations conveniently placed in buildings and other locations around campus.

Avoiding landfill

UBC’s goal is to divert 80 per cent of our operational garbage from the landfill by 2020. 

To achieve this, we need the help of everyone in the UBC community to ensure that recyclable and compostable items are placed in the proper bins and not just dumped into the garbage.

Garbage rotting in landfills increases the risk of soil, water and air pollution, and creates the greenhouse gas methane that is twenty times worse than carbon dioxide (C02). Garbage is often caused by contamination, created when certain materials are mixed into the wrong bin and cannot be removed. This makes it hard to recycle properly because an otherwise reusable resource has to be sent the landfill.

At UBC, we have a ‘closed-loop’ system for the food scraps we collect: we turn food and plant waste into compost that is used for gardening on campus. By keeping plastic out of the food scraps stream, it allows us to turn the 5 tonnes of organic waste UBC produces daily into a clean compost.

Do your part and Sort It Out.


Access and download Sort It Out materials, including signage, posters and information sheets, as well as online resources to learn more about waste sorting. Materials can also be printed and posted on sorting stations to aid users in sorting waste, as well as educate and promote a zero waste community.

Sort It Out Game

Test your knowledge of waste sorting on campus by playing the Sort it Out Game. Play the game now.


Wondering what goes where? Use the following interactive search tool to find how to support recycling or composting on campus.

Questions or feedback

For immediate problems with recycling stations, such as overflows contact your Facilities manager or call the Service Centre at 604 820 2173.

For general questions, feedback, or support on waste sorting issues contact: