Zero Waste Programs funded by NYC Department of Sanitation

Click here for Important Notice on the Suspension of GrowNYC’s Recycling Programs  

On March 12, 2020, Mayor De Blasio declared a state of emergency in New York City in response to the global pandemic of COVID-19. The City has been required to divert all necessary resources to aid in the COVID-19 relief efforts. This crisis, and the resulting decrease in economic activity, have forced the City to make significant budget cuts to maintain emergency services and core municipal services. This suspension allows the City to divert resources to emergency COVID-19 response efforts.

Included in these budget cuts were all of GrowNYC’s Zero Waste Programs, including Zero Waste Schools, composting, Stop ‘N’ Swap®, and general recycling outreach & education. All of these programs were fully funded by the City and we had no choice but to discontinue our recycling-related work for the foreseeable future. It is important to note, that while GrowNYC’s city-funded recycling programs have been suspended, curbside recycling continues and we strongly encourage you to continue to reduce, reuse, and recycle at home! For more information see our blog post, NYC Zero Waste During COVID-19.

For 50 years, GrowNYC has been committed to promoting recycling and helping New Yorkers find ways to reduce waste. And we will continue to be strong advocates for robust recycling and composting programs. We are actively seeking funding to rebuild our zero waste programming. If you would like to help, please let us know by contacting Nick Rolf at and/or making a donation here.

Like you, we look forward to the day when the city’s fiscal situation improves and our vital recycling partnership with the city will start again. Until then, it is incumbent on all New Yorkers to continue their efforts to reduce, reuse, and recycle.

We work to increase participation in New York City’s zero waste initiatives with workshops for residents and supers, community events centered on education, weekly collections for food scraps and clothing, Stop ‘N’ Swap® community reuse events, and more.

How Can We Help You?

I want to know what to recycle

  • Email with your specific questions and we will do what we can to help
  • Click HERE for NYC recycling information

I want to recycle clothing & textiles

  • Click HERE to find a clothing collection

I want to compost my food scraps

  • Click HERE to find a GrowNYC food scrap dropoff or other compost resources

I want to find a recycling event

  • Click HERE for a listing of upcoming electronics collections, shredding events, hazardous waste collections, and more.

I want to attend a Stop ‘N’ Swap

  • Click HERE to find a swap near you

I want to receive a monthly e-mail about upcoming events

  • Click HERE to sign up for monthly event notifications


In a moment where New Yorkers have turned to parks and gardening to ease the mental and emotional strain the Covid-19 pandemic has taken on residents, when the need for education surrounding nutrition and health couldn’t be more critical, the same nonprofits that make green space and nutrition education possible are in danger of going under, while vital city agencies like the New York City Parks Department’s GreenThumb program are facing severe budget cuts.

  • Food Access & Agriculture

    Our network of Greenmarket farmers markets, Youthmarkets, Fresh Food Box pick-ups, and Greenmarket Co. ensures that all New Yorkers have access to the freshest, healthiest local food.

  • Conservation

    We provide food scrap drop-offs, clothing collections, Stop 'N' Swap® community reuse events, and zero waste trainings to make resource conservation easy for all.

  • Green Space

    We build and rejuvenate community & school gardens in all 5 boroughs, and support even more gardens through volunteer days, technical assistance, school garden grants, & more.

  • Education

    We foster future environmental stewards by providing 66,000 children each year with programs that provide meaningful interactions with the natural environment.