Recycling & Materials Management

Office of Recycling & Green Community

Health Monroe - Recycling and Green Community ProgramThe Office of Recycling and Green Community manages waste reduction, recycling, and disposal of hazardous waste in Monroe County. The recycling and green community coordinator is responsible for communicating with local municipalities in orchestrating recycling events and hazardous waste disposal days. Michigan Green Communities Member

Reduce > Reuse > Recycle (in that order)

Did you know the three R's are in order of their environmental impact from most to least? This is why we should focus on reducing and reusing before recycling. The most effective way to reduce waste is not to make it in the first place, or put another way "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

Another impactful way to prevent pollution and waste is by reusing. A reusable water bottle can prevent thousands of plastic bottles from polluting the environment and wildlife or ending up in landfills and incinerators. Recycling should be considered a last resort due to the abysmally low recycling rate, especially with plastic (only around 5% in the US). It's crucial to recognize that every new purchase we make has not only a financial cost but also an environmental one that lasts long beyond our use of the product and lifetimes. Every dollar we spend is a vote for the kind of planet we want now and in the future. Nothing magically disappears when we throw it away as there is no "away." Everything must come from and go somewhere. So let's make mindful and healthy choices for our health and the health of our planet by prioritizing the 3 R's, beginning with Reduce.

To learn more about recycling and its economic and environmental challenges, please check out the Frontline investigative special on recycling. Or, here's a short video on why plastic recycling is mostly a myth. Finally, Sir David Attenborough shares how we can solve plastic pollution, hint: we need to start at the source.

We need your help to ensure recycling efforts in Monroe County are successful so we can keep our community programs going. We ask that you sort your recyclables correctly to ensure the materials will be recycled and not sent to landfill. Many dutifully store up their recyclables in anticipation of a successful contribution to a cleaner environment but are denied that hope because some use the bins as dumping sites, wishcycle items that are not recyclable or don't break down their boxes and take up far more space than needed. Putting the wrong items in the bin can injure workers at the recycling facility, lower the quality of good recyclables, and damage sorting equipment

Please feel free to contact The Office of Recycling and Green Community Program for any questions regarding your concerns with household hazardous waste and recycling.


The 2024 recycling event dates are here! Be on the lookout for a mailer of all events soon!

2024 Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) & Document Shredding

Monroe Charter Township Hall - 4925 E Dunbar Rd, Monroe

  • Tuesday, May 7, 4 - 7 pm HHW and Shredding  
  • Saturday, August 10, 9 am -12 pm HHW only

Bedford - Indian Creek Park - 8486 Douglas Road, Lambertville

  • Saturday, June 15, 9 am - 12 pm  HHW and Shredding
  • Tuesday, September 17, 4 - 7 pm HHW only

If you miss our HHW collections, two companies with locations around SE MI and NW OH will take material for you year-round and dispose of it responsibly: