2018 Mardi Gras Recycling Initiative

YLC Recycles and Arc of Greater New Orleans are launching a pilot initiative to provide recycling at two 2018 Mardi Gras parades! Learn more about how you can support this historic new endeavor below.

Help Us Make Mardi Gras Green!

YLC Recycles and Arc of Greater New Orleans are teaming up this year to tackle Mardi Gras waste to help make our favorite season more sustainable and environmentally-friendly for the New Orleans community.

In 2016, 940 tons of waste was collected off the streets during the carnival season. A significant amount of this material is discarded or neglected single use items that could easily be recycled or reused. The waste poses many environmental hazards and is costly to clean up.

About The Initiative

YLC Recycles is collaborating with Arc of Greater New Orleans, Republic Services, Krewe of Freret, Krewe of Thoth, and the City of New Orleans’ Department of Sanitation to launch a new recycling initiative during two Mardi Gras parades on February 3 and 11. This pilot program will be documented, measured, and refined in an effort to promote eventual adoption by the city government.

Where and When:

Krewe of Freret – Saturday, February 3 at 2:30 pm
Uptown, New Orleans

Krewe of Thoth – Sunday, February 11 at 12:00 pm
Uptown, New Orleans

How it works:

  1. Recycling bags will be distributed by uniformed YLCR & Arc volunteers before, during, and after parades to Krewes and members of the public along the parade route. Separate bags for aluminum, plastic, and throws will be available.

  2. Six designated collection stations will be set up along the parade routes to accept recycled waste, with detailed instructions indicated on each bag. See a map with collection points below.

  3. Trucks will take away bagged waste to recycling facilities before city clean up arrives.

  4. Volunteers will break down bead boxes and assist with other post-event recycling efforts. Krewes are connected with a network of sustainable bead suppliers to ensure that remaining throws are recycled.

  5. Republic Services will collect co-mingled recyclables from the recycling stations and bring the waste to their Materials Recovery Facility for processing.

 Recycling Station Locations

Six recycling collection stations will be positioned along the route, on Napoleon Ave. and St. Charles Ave. Each station will have a tent, table and bins for both recycled throws and
disposable waste. Find the location most convenient for you, below!

Start: Magazine & Napoleon
Station 1: Napoleon & Chestnut
Station 2: St. Charles & Gen. Pershing
Station 3: St. Charles & Peniston
Station 4: St. Charles & Louisiana Ave.
Station 5: St. Charles & Sixth St.
Station 6: St. Charles & First St.
Finish: Jackson Ave. & St. Charles – truck & volunteer exit point

What To Look For

Recycling Volunteers

Initiative volunteers will be wearing these green or purple vests and will be passing out recycling bags in the pilot area (between the recycling stations listed above).

Initiative Recycling Bags

mardi gras recycling bag

Recycling bags, whether they are green or purple, come in two types: aluminum/plastic waste and parade throws. Scan the QR code on the bag for a list of recycling locations!

Recycling Stations

mardi gras recycling tent

Drop off your full recycling bags to one of these six stations located along the parade route. A full map of the locations can be found on this page.


Contact the YLC Recycles team at recycles@ylcnola.org.


Make Mardi Gras History!

More than 200 volunteers are needed to make this historic initiative a success! Choose a volunteer shift and sign up today.


Volunteer at Krewe of Thoth (2/11/18)

Sign Up for Shift 1 (11 am – 4 pm)

Sign Up for Shift 2 (1 – 6 pm)

Volunteer Roles

When registering for a volunteer shift, please indicate which volunteer role you would prefer in the comments field.

Bag Volunteers

Bag volunteers will help with bag distribution before and during each parade, explain proper bag use to members of the public, and assist with post-parade bag pick up. 

Recycling Station Volunteers

Recycling Station Volunteers will be responsible for setting up and tearing down recycling bins at each site, educating the public about the program, passing out recycling bags to parade-goers, and collecting recycling bags from the surrounding area to bring back to their station. 


Initiative Collaborators:

YLC Recycles

arc gno logo

With Support From:

republic services logo


krewe of toth png

city of new orleans logo