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In support of the Department's goal of implementing environmental sustainability practices across the complex, all DOE employees and contractors should incorporate the three "R's" of wise resource use as a core principle of their daily activities: reduce, reuse, and recycle.  The Department's recycling program at Headquarters earns monetary credits from the GSA which is then credited to the Sheila Jo Watkins Memorial Child Development Centers for tuition assistance and the purchase of furniture and equipment.

What can be recycled, and where
What you can recycleWhere to recycle
White office paper, printed with any color ink.  Staples are acceptable but paperclips, binder clips, plastic flags, tabs and colored post-it notes must be removed.Receptacles for white office paper are located in office suites and next to copy machines.  Blue collection bins for individual offices may be obtained from the Facilities Management Helpdesk at (202) 586-6100 or by e-mailing:
FORFacOpsHelpdesk@hq.doe.gov or
GTNFacOpsHelpdesk@hq.doe.gov.
Newspapers, glass, plastic bottles, aluminum and steel cans (clean)Receptacles for all of these items are located at or adjacent to each of the elevator banks.
Mixed paper - colored paper, paperboard, used file folders, telephone books.Only in specially provided bulk recycling containers. To obtain the large rolling waste containers for temporary use in or outside a specific office suite contact the Facilities Management Helpdesk at (202) 586-6100 or by e-mailing:
FORFacOpsHelpdesk@hq.doe.gov or
GTNFacOpsHelpdesk@hq.doe.gov.
Corrugated cardboardContact the Facilities Help Desk to arrange a pickup of bulk corrugated cardboard materials.  To obtain the large rolling waste containers for temporary use in or outside a specific office suite contact the Facilities Management Helpdesk at (202) 586-6100 or by e-mailing:
FORFacOpsHelpdesk@hq.doe.gov or
GTNFacOpsHelpdesk@hq.doe.gov.
Used toner cartridgesToner recycling containers are located in the Forrestal and Germantown Supply Stores. In Forrestal used toner cartridges may be dropped off at the Distribution Center room GL-084.  Used cartridges may also be sent via internal mail.
BatteriesBattery recycling containers are located in the Forrestal and Germantown Supply Stores.  Batteries accepted for recycling are: Alkaline, Lithium Ion, Nickel Cadmium (Ni-Cd), Nickel-Iron, and Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH).  Each self-service supply store has a cabinet for accepting used batteries of the following sizes: AAA, AA, 9 volt, C, and D.
Reusable office suppliesIf you have unneeded office supplies in good condition that can be reused please drop them off at the Freebie table at the Supply Stores.  These supplies can then be reused by others who need them, saving both money as well as the energy that would be used to manufacture new supplies.
What you cannot recycle
Adhesive tape
Carbon paper
Food wrappings
Heavy metal fasteners
- Staples and paper clips are permitted
Padded envelopes
Paper cups
Plastic or metal spiral binders
- You may remove the spirals and recycle the rest
Post-It notes
Pressure sensitive labels
Rubber bands
Three ring binders
Three ring binders
Tyvek envelopes
Waxy paper

If you have any questions about the recycling programs please call:
Forrestal (202) 586-6100
Germantown (301) 903-4005

Recycling Results and Measures

The Office of Administration manages many recycling activities at DOE Headquarters that significantly impact energy and the environment. The Department of Energy Headquarters has instituted several recycling programs, starting with standard, solid waste recycling in 1991, and has expanded to include carpeting, batteries, and toner cartridges.

Waste Recycling

  • In FY 2017, DOE Headquarters recycled 350 tons of waste which earned over $5,400 in GSA credits that were provided to the Sheila Jo Watkins Memorial Child Development Centers.  Since the recycling program began in 1991 over 8,000 tons of waste have been recycled earning over $385,000 for the Child Development Centers.

Carpet Recycling

  • In FY 2016, DOE Headquarters replaced and recycled over 20,000 square yards of carpeting - enough to cover almost 3-1/2 football field!  All carpet installed is composed of 45% to 62% recycled content fibers, and 100% recycled content backing.  We require that 100% of the carpet removed be recycled into carpet products and other by products and not be sent to landfills.  The recycled carpeting is made into other carpeting, car parking blocks, flooring, and other consumer products, closing the loop in the recycling process and fulfilling the goal of reusing materials.

Battery Recycling

  • In FY 2018, DOE Headquarters collected over 460 pounds of batteries for recycling.  Since the battery recycling program started in 2005 over 9,700 pounds of batteries have been collected and recycled.  Battery recycling bins are located in the Forrestal and Germantown Paperclips Supply Stores.  Batteries accepted for recycling are: Alkaline, Lithium Ion, Nickel Cadmium (Ni-Cd), Nickel-Iron, and Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH).

Toner Recycling

  • In FY 2018, DOE Headquarters collected almost 4,000 toner and fax cartridges for recycling.  Since the program started in 2003 over 50,000 cartridges have been recycled.  The Department partners with a Small Woman Minority Owned Business for the recycling, providing green jobs in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.  In Forrestal, used toner cartridges may be dropped off at the Distribution Center room GL-084.  Used cartridges may also be sent via internal mail to Forrestal Distribution, Room GL-084.

MAAdm updated 01/06/2020 - New Format