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Waste & resources

Zurich Airport amasses large volumes of different types of waste: paper, cardboard, wood, metal and other material, as well as hazardous waste and large amounts of rubbish.

Abfall Wertstoffe
Rubbish bin in Dock E 

Airport-wide concept

The airport-wide waste management concept was established in 1992 and was most recently revised in 2011. It is based on the principles of avoidance, reuse and environmentally friendly disposal. Flughafen Zürich AG takes care of waste disposal for many businesses on the premises. Two gas-powered collection vehicles transport rubbish and recyclables directly from the source to external disposal companies. Alternatively, waste is gathered at the central collection points and then disposed of externally.


The systematic separation of recyclables and rubbish is an important approach. Wood, metal, paper, cardboard, plastics and PET items can all be recycled. A complete collection infrastructure and an electronic clearing system based on the „originator pays“ principle facilitates separation. Even rubbish is worth something. In Switzerland, all rubbish is burned. This creates thermal energy that can be used in district heating systems and to generate power.