Recycle Camp

Are you interested in Recycling at Burning Man?

Do you really want to give something back to this community?


Recycle Camp is the hard working group of folks who are as committed to reducing waste as they are to having a good time. Begun in 1998, Recycle Camp is the place to recycle your aluminum cans as all proceeds are donated to Gerlach schools! The volunteer opportunities go beyond the playa; they range from pre-event to post-event, meaning you can get your recycle-fu on all year long!

We need all kinds of help throughout different phases of the process:

Pre-Event: Get involved by meeting up with the key players at Recycle Camp. Things actually begin in January with budgets and camp plans. Any new ideas for the coming year need to be discussed early. We encourage everyone who has considered recycling on or off the playa to come along and find out what’s going on.

Meetings are informal gatherings dedicated to brainstorming, planning, educating and having fun. Some meetings include conference call-in for those that aren’t in the Bay Area.

As we near the event, our priorities will be any maintenance of our infrastructure and machines, and planning the construction and decoration of our camp. We will need help with all of this! Food and beverages are always provided. Come out and see what Recycling at Burning Man is really all about. Wear your work clothes and be prepared to talk the recycle talk.

During the Event: Recycle Camp is one of the best and most rewarding places to hang out and camp in Black Rock City. This year we’ll have more space than ever for our dedicated Recyclenauts. The once-small band of workers has steadily grown to keep up with the growing population of Black Rock City.

We will need tons of help to deal with the nearly two tons of aluminum. We typically run two daily 4-hour shifts, Monday through Sunday, 9am to 5pm. Shift leads are needed to coordinate drop-in volunteers. First- and second-rate bicycle mechanics are needed to keep our fleet of bike carts running. Sign makers and decorators are needed to decorate our lounges and make our camp more visible than ever before. If you’re thinking about camping at Recycle Camp please be prepared to work, get your hands a little dirty and put in some fun time making Black Rock City the great city that it is.

Post-Event: After the event, the Recyclenauts continue working, breaking camp and leaving no trace, a rewarding process that sets an example to the rest of the community. It takes several days to reduce Recycle Camp to nothing, and pack it up so that we can reuse it next year. Care to lend a hand? We’d love to have you!

If you’re up to the challenge, or if you have any questions about any of this, email Recycle Camp or fill out our Volunteer Questionnaire and sign up today. Let us know your level and angle of interest. We’ll put you on the Recycle announce and discussion lists, where you’ll find out the dates of our meetings, activities, events, work parties, and also other Burning Man activities.