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Recycling and reuse programs


  • Ink cartridges

    How to recycle your empty office ink cartridges:

    1. Write empty on your empty ink cartridges; if they come with a shipping label, stick the label on the outside.A picture of ink being recycled
    2. Send them to Shipping/receiving through inter-office mail.

    It's as easy as that.

    All empty ink cartridges are sent back to the company from which they came (e.g. Ricoh, Lexmark). Personal desk printer ink cartridges will be collected together and properly recycled.

  • Pens and markers

    Pen Recycling Program

    Every time you use up a writing instrument, be sure to save it and bring it to a pen recycling box on campus. We send collected waste to Terracycle, a company that collects previously non-recyclable or difficult-to-recycle waste. The waste is converted into new products, ranging from recycled park benches to upcycled backpacks.

    Accepted waste:

    Any brand of:

    • pens and pen caps
    • mechanical pencils
    • markers and marker caps
    • highlighters and highlighter caps
    • permanent markers and permanent marker caps

    Locations of collection bins:

    • North Oshawa Library – Karin Downie, ext. 2967pen recycling box at the north campus library
    • Education Library (11 Simcoe Street North) – Kate Gibbings, ext. 2976
    • Social Science Library (61 Charles Street) – Chelsie Lalonde, ext. 5651
    • South Village Residence
    • South Hall Residence
    • Information Technology Service Desk
    • U5 Building, Room 68
    • Campus Corners, second floor
    • Campus Corners, third floor
  • Battery Recycling

    Recycle used batteries at any Campus Library location:

    Battery Recycling Bin

    North Oshawa location:

    • North Oshawa Library (50 Founders Drive).

    Downtown Oshawa locations:

    • Education Library (11 Simcoe Street North).
    • Social Science Library (61 Charles Street).

    For a complete list of battery collection locations, download the Campus Battery Collection Map.

    There will be additional opportunities to recycle used batteries and other items during future Thrift Swap events.

    We encourage students, staff and faculty to take their spent alkaline (single-use) and rechargeable batteries to one of the convenient drop-off locations. All types of batteries will be accepted, including: AAA, AA, C, D, 9 volt, lithium, NiCad, NiMH, etc. 

    Where do they go?

    All batteries collected through this program will be responsibly recycled by Raw Materials Company (RMC). Did you know that 90 per cent of a battery's components can be recycled!? When you send used batteries to RMC, the steel, earth elements (zinc, manganese, potassium, etc.) and paper and plastic in the batteries will be recovered, diverted and reused.

    Why does it matter?

    Recovered materials are used to make new products, saving our earth's finite resources and the energy needed to mine them from ore. Keeping batteries out of landfills diverts potentially harmful materials from our soils and waterways. 

  • Lamps and light bulbs

    One hundred per cent of the incandescent light bulbs used on campus have been phased out to light-emitting diode (LED) light fixtures. LED is a more efficient lighting option, a reduction of approximately 85 kilowatts of demand.

    All used lamps are properly recycled by a certified third-party processing and recycling company. This process allowed the university to divert approximately 190 kg of glass, metals, phosphor, mercury, porcelain and plastic from landfill, while improving campus efficiency.

  • Electronic waste (e-waste) program

    E-waste is the fastest growing waste stream on the planet. Although it represents two per cent of trash in landfills, it equals 70 per cent of overall toxic waste.

    At Ontario Tech, we're doing our part to recycle e-waste responsibly.



    Information to include

    Asset-tagged e-waste

    • e-waste description
    • asset tag information
    • pickup location

    All other e-waste

    • e-waste description
    • pickup location

    Students, faculty and staff will have additional opportunities to recycle e-waste and other items during the upcoming Thrift Swap days. The Thrift Swap takes place in the lobbies of the Simcoe Village and South Village residences.

    Did you know?

    A portion of campus e-waste helps fund the university's Engineers Without Borders (EWB) Junior Fellowship Program. Any waste that is of low or no value goes to EWB, whose service provider, Ontario Electronic Stewardship, pays EWB based on the weight of waste.

    Accepted electronics

    • audio and video players and recorders (eg. MP3, cassette, digital)
    • cameras (web, digital, analogue)
    • cellular phones and pagers
    • computer peripherals (keyboards, mice, hard drives, optical drives – CD, Blueray, DVD, HD-DVD)
    • computer peripherals including modems
    • desktop computers
    • desktop printing devices including desktop copiers and multi-function devices
    • equalizers/(pre)amplifiers
    • floor standing printing devices including printers, photocopiers, multi-function devices
    • monitors
    • PDAs
    • personal handheld computers
    • portable computers
    • radios
    • receivers
    • scanners, typewriters
    • speakers
    • telephones and answering machines
    • televisions
    • turntables
    • video players/projectors, digital frames
    • video recorders

    Do not include cardboard, paper, plastics or hazardous waste.


  • Thrift Swap

    The Thrift Swap is a biannual event hosted by the Residence Life Team and the sustainability offices of Ontario Tech and Durham College. It is an opportunity for all students, staff and faculty to divert items from the landfill by swapping out, donating or recycling them. Items can be dropped off in the lobbies of both Simcoe and South Village Residences.

    Items accepted:

    • batteries
    • clothing
    • disposable plastic bags
    • e-waste
    • non-perishable food items
    • paper
    • small household appliances
    • used books
    • writing utensils

    Thrift Swap PosterClothing and small household appliances will be donated to the Canadian Diabetes Association, non-perishable food items will be donated to the local Food Bank, and all other items will be recycled through the proper channels.

To learn more about how to recycle or reuse items on campus, contact or call ext. 6246.