Recycling at Coliseums, Arenas, Speedways
and Other Large Venues

Providing for recycling at large venues is a bit different than at special events.  Venues are destination locations that need to think about a system for recycling on a continuing basis.  Events on the other hand last only a short time, so their recycling systems are temporary.

Opportunities for recycling in public places vary depending on the type of venue. Recycling at a shopping mall might involve purchasing permanent recycling bins and signing an ongoing waste/recycling contract with a hauler. Recycling at conventions centers may rely on easily identifiable containers, but also need excellent communication with their clients to collect clean recyclables for a variety of events including garden, boat or camper shows that host thousands of people annually. Theme and amusement parks or airports need to make recycling fun and easy! Stadiums and other sports arenas and speedways have opportunities to recycle inside the venue and outside in parking lots, camping, and tailgating areas.

As we seek to increase our recycling and recovery rates in Connecticut, everyone needs to do their part. Below are resources to help businesses create strong and comprehensive recycling and waste recovery programs at their specific venue.

Recycling Is 

The Law!

Connecticut’s recycling laws and regulations require everyone in the state to recycle whether they are at home, at work, school, or at a special event.

Venue operators must make provisions for recycling.

The items required to be recycled in accordance with Section 22a-208v and Section 22a-256a of the Connecticut General Statutes and Section 22a-241b of the Regulations of the Connecticut State Agencies include:

  • Glass & metal food and beverage containers
  • Corrugated cardboard
  • Newspaper
  • White office paper
  • Scrap Metal
  • Ni-Cd rechargeable batteries (from electronic waste)
  • Used motor oil
  • Lead acid batteries (from vehicles)
  • Leaves
  • Grass clippings

In addition to the state mandated recyclables listed above, check your local recycling contact to learn about additional materials you may be required to recycle.


Airports and Transportation

Developing and Implementing an Airport Recycling Program (EPA)

Transportation Recycling (EPA)

Trash Landings: How Airlines and Airports Can Clean up Their Recycling Programs, Dec 2006 (Natural Resource Defense Council)

Airports Going Green, Has links to current and past conference presentations.  (Chicago Dept of Transportation) 

Seattle Airport Recycling Bins
Salt Lake City Airport Recycling Bins.  Photo courtesy of Plan-it Friendly, LLC


Convention Centers

Convention Center Recycling  (EPA)

Green Meetings Report, 2004 (Convention Industry Council)

Green Conventions (EPA)

Shopping Centers & Malls

Shopping Center Recycling (EPA)

Yorkdale Shopping Centre (Toronto)

Stadium Recycling

Stadium Recycling (EPA)

Football Stadium Recycling (University of Michigan)

Zero Waste at Aggie Stadium (University of California at Davis)

Recycling at Football Games (Beaver Stadium, Penn State University)

Rentschler Field Case Study:  Food Waste Composting at a Special Event (NERC)

Yale Bowl Entrance with Trash and Recycling Bins Yale Bulldog with Surrounding Recycling Bins

Race Tracks

Michigan International Speedway Recycling Successful With Help From Coca-Cola January 2008 (NASCAR)

Anheuser-Busch and Fans to Recycle for Speedway Children's Charities October 2008 (Lowe's Motor Speedway, Concord, NC)


Theme and Amusement Parks

The Walt Disney Company, 2008 Corporate Responsibility Report

Waste Management: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, July 2008 (Silver Dollar City theme park near Branson, MO)


Correctional Facilities

Waste Reduction and Recycling Guide for Florida Correctional Facilities, January 2004 (FL DEP)



Guidance for Special Event Food Waste Diversion - Includes general guidance, food waste management plan template, and four case studies at large venues. (NERC)

Presented at the EPA Resource Conservation Challenge (RCC) 2009 Workshop; Strategies for Encouraging Sustainable Venues, Track #8 in the Recycling Market Update Sessions:

Promoting Recycling at Public Venues in PA, Michael Forbeck, PA DEP 

Green Venue Work, Jack DeBell, Univ. of Colorado

Rocky Mountain Greener Venue Partnership for Sustainable Communities, (EPA Region 8)

Are You Recycling at Your Large Venue?

We welcome your own stories of how you are reducing, reusing, recycling or composting at your venue. If you’d like to share your ideas, successes and/or resources, please contact the Recycling unit at 860-424-3366.

Content Last Updated February 2020