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Environmental Health

Environmental Health

Materials & Solid Waste Management

Welcome to the Office of Recycling and Green Community Programs

Recycling and Green Community logo
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The Office of Recycling and Green Community is charged with managing waste reduction, recycling, and hazardous waste disposal 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.  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 Division of Environmental Health is calling on you to help make recycling efforts in Monroe County the best and most affordable to all.  To that extent, we ask that you sort your recyclables accurately as to ensure the materials will be recycled.  Many who faithfully store up their recyclables in anticipation of a successful contribution to a greener environment are denied that hope because of those who use the bins as rubbish collection sites.  We must provide a clean source of materials or the collections may prove fruitless.  

The following links offer more information:

Stay tuned to this section for spring 2022 events!


Battery, CFL & LED Recycling
Earth Day
Electronics Recycling
Environmental Fund Grant
Household Hazardous Waste (HHW)
Green Schools
Medication Disposal
Mercury Thermometers
Michigan Green Schools
Motor Oil
Our Water 
RecycleNOW - Free Drop-Off Recycling  
Secure Document Shredding
Solid Waste Management Plan Amendment
Tire Recycling

We’re all familiar with the three R's - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, but did you know they’re in order of importance and impact? The first ­"R" is reduce because the most effective way to prevent waste is not to create it in the first place. Put another way, the most sustainable product is the one you don’t buy. The next best thing is to reuse what you already have, like a reusable water bottle. Making new products like-single use plastic cups or straws requires extraction, transportation, and processing of limited precious natural resour­­ces from our planet. This comes at a cost to our environment and our health. Remember, there is no "away" and everything must come from somewhere. Reduction and reuse are the most effective ways you can save natural resources, protect the environment, and save money.  For more on what you can do, click here: https://www.epa.gov/recycle

For a general overview of how recycling works, click here for the Recycling 101 booklet!

"Like" the Monroe County Health Department on Facebook for updates on future recycling events

Have an item you're not sure where/how to recycle, check here: https://earth911.com/

 Michigan Green Schools Program
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Michigan Green Schools program is back for the 2021-2022 school year and invite your school to participate. Application materials can be found at the links below.

Michigan Green Schools is a non-profit 501(c)3 agency dedicated to assisting all Michigan schools – public and private – achieve environmental goals which include protecting the air, land, water and animals of our state along with world outreach through good ecological practices and the teaching of educational stewardship of students pre-kindergarten through senior high school.

 2018-2019 GREEN SCHOOLS
Congrats and keep up the great green work!!!

Dundee Elementary School
Fred W. Ritter Elementary
Meadow Montessori School
Monroe County Intermediate School District
North Elementary School
St. John the Baptist, Elementary School
St. Mary Middle School Campus
St. Michael the Archangel, Early Elementary School
St. Patrick Catholic School
St. Joseph Catholic School
Sterling Elementary School

Bedford Junior High School
Eyler Elementary School
Sodt Elementary School
Triumph Academy

Dundee Middle School
Dundee High School
Mason Central Elementary School

Take part in the Michigan Green Schools Program and join the growing Green School movement!

CLICK HERE for Green School applications, fun ideas, and more!

Green School Resource Guide HERE
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 Green Schools will receive a Green School flag, a certificate signed by the Governor, and be recognized at the Monroe County Earth Day Celebration.  If your school was previously recognized as an official Michigan Green School, you need to reapply each year as green status is designated on an annual basis.  

***Applications are accepted between January 1st and March 1st***


For questions or more information, please contact: Dan Rock (734) 240-7909 or dan_rock@monroemi.org  

Just Announced: Earth Day Expo 2022 will be April 23rd at MCCC  


Join the celebration of our planet and all things green at the Monroe County Earth Day Expo! This free family-friendly event has activities for everyone and includes prize drawings, entertainment, and educational exhibits focused on living sustainably. Also featured at the event will be environmental education efforts underway in our schools, including the Michigan Green Schools Program and a student project focused on climate literacy. Please mark your calendar and join us on April 23rd, 2022 from 11a-2pm!

The Expo is also looking for sponsors and exhibitors focused on the environment, health and wellness, and sustainability. Please email Dan_Rock@monroemi.org or call 734-240-7909 for more info!

 Free RecycleNOW Drop-off Locations and Times

The RecycleNOW program accepts flattened cardboard, paper, metal cans, plastic and glass bottles, and jugs (SEE GUIDE BELOW). Please make sure your recyclables are empty, clean, and dryRecycleNOW is a single stream program which means all items go loosely, not bagged or stuffed into other items, into one bin. They'll be sorted at the Materials Recovery Facility (MRF).

Want to recycle right? Click here: Recycling Simplified

NO. PLASTIC. BAGS. should ever go in the bins. Plastic bags are the number one contaminant in single-stream recycling and are known as "tanglers." 

Q: Why "tanglers" should never go in your recycling bin and what are “tanglers”?

A: Plastic bags, rope, electrical cords, string lights and clothing are all examples of “tanglers” – long or stretchy items that get tangled up in the gears of the machinery that sorts recyclables.

Q: Why is this a problem?

A: When plastic bags and other items get tangled in the machinery staff must shut down sorting and cut them off the gears, one-by-one. This is dangerous for staff and shuts down the facility and sorting process, making it slower and more expensive to sort recyclables and get them ready for the next leg in their journey. Films and flexible packaging, wreak havoc on waste management systems. They are difficult to sort, contaminate high-value loads, and jam systems, which leads to significant downtime. This downtime drives up operational costs and leads to higher service fees to municipalities.

This one-and-a-half-minute video shows what happens when tanglers go into recycling:

However, you can recycle your plastic bags along with bubble wrap and other stretchy plastic at local retail stores such as Meijer, Target, Kohl's, Lowe's, Kroger, Walmart, and more! Click here for examples of plastic bags, wraps and other plastic films that can be recycled in those storefront bins.

Curious what happens to all those recyclables you put in the bin? They're taken to a Materials Recovery Facility or MRF, you can find out more by clicking on the following Recycling Center Video Tour.

ban-on-bags-300x295plastic bags in recycling

Bins are available from 7 am - 6 pm. 

  • Every Tuesday: Bedford Township Hall, 8100 Jackman Rd., Temperance
  • Every Wednesday: Monroe Charter Township Hall, 4925 E. Dunbar Rd., Monroe
  • First & Third Monday of the month: Dundee Kroger, 571 E. Monroe St., Dundee 
  • Second Tuesday of the month: St. Joseph Catholic Church, 2238 Manhattan St., Erie 
  • Every Tuesday & Thursday: Stevens Disposal, 16929 Ida West Rd, Petersburg
NOTE: If RecycleNOW day falls on a Holiday, this will usually cause a one day delay during that week 

 (right click to download and save)

Recycling guidlines

Only have paper to recycle? Monroe has over 50 locations to recycle it at our schools, churches, and municipal buildings! Paper placed in the Paper Retriever bin is directly recycled back into newsprint within a few weeks of it being collected. Acceptable materials include newspapers, magazines, catalogs, books, office paper, school paper, and mail with no need to sort. Click on the bin below to find one near you.

2021 Household Hazardous Waste Collections

Four Household Hazardous Waste Collection events are scheduled for 2021. These events are free of charge and open to Monroe County residents only; business waste will not be accepted. Acceptable materials include, but are not limited to: sharps in rigid sealed containers, pesticides, fertilizers, automotive fluids, cleaning products, paints, flammable items, all types of batteries, mercury-containing items, smoke alarms, and fluorescent bulbs. To view more information on Household Hazardous Waste, including what is accepted at a collection, please visit the Household Hazardous Waste page.

Latex or water based paint can be disposed of with regular trash when completely dry. Doing this saves program funding for its intended purpose, to dispose of toxic and hazardous wastes. Kitty litter can quickly dry out latex paint when mixed at a 1:1 ratio. This can be done in a large garbage bag inside a cardboard box. Instructions are below.

Click here to learn how to safely dispose of latex paint at home.

Click here to learn how to safely dispose of old smoke detectors.

Monroe Township Hall -  4925 E Dunbar Rd, Monroe, MI 48161
Tuesday, May 11th, 3-7pm HHW only
Saturday, August 14th 8am-12pm (HHW/Document shredding)

Bedford Township (NEW LOCATION) – Indian Creek Park - 8486 Douglas Road, Lambertville, MI 48144
Wednesday, June 16th, 3-7pm (HHW/Document shredding)
Saturday, September 18th, 8am-12pm (HHW only)

2021 Tire Recycling Collections
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Monroe County residents will again have multiple opportunities to recycle unwanted passenger vehicle tires through a program offered by the Monroe County Recycling & Green Community Program, the Monroe County Drain Commission and the DEQ Scrap Tire Cleanup Grant. 

April 28th 
May 26th
June 30th 
July 28th

The collections will be held the last Wednesday of the month from April through July at the Monroe County Drain Commission Office, 1005 South Raisinville Road, 9 AM – 12 PM or until the trailer is full. The dates and hours above are the only times that tires can be left at the site. Tires will not be accepted at any other time; and leaving tires after hours is illegal dumping, which is considered to be a punishable offense. 

Participants are allowed to bring up to 10 tires and collected tires will be recycled at no charge. All tires must be clean and off the rim. Only passenger vehicle or light truck tires will be accepted. This program is for Monroe County residents only. Tires from commercial sources will not be accepted. Residents who have large tires to recycle can call the Environmental Health Office at (734) 240-7900 for recycling information.

Medication Disposal

4.25 billion prescriptions are filled in the United States every year, and it is estimated that 3% to 7% of medications intended for patients goes unused. That's millions of pounds of pharmaceuticals that could adversely affect the environment if disposed of improperly.  Studies have shown that pharmaceuticals are present in our nation's waterways, and further research suggests that certain drugs may cause ecological harm.  In addition, leaving unwanted medications around the house presents a danger to children, guests, and pets.  Reducing access to prescription medication is a strategy to address prescription drug abuse among community youth.  Proper disposal of pharmaceuticals at medication take-back events or drop off locations are one way that you can protect the environment and your community.

Got sharps? Click here for information on proper disposal. They can also be brought to our HHW drop-offs, but ONLY in a hard sealed container. 


Residents now have access to safe and proper disposal of expired or unwanted medications at 6 locations through the Red Med Bin disposal program. This is an expansion of a medication collection program which began in 2009.  

Accepted materials include unwanted or expired prescription and over the counter medicines, medication samples, cold and flu medications, unopened epi-pens, and veterinary medications.  Please bring all medicines in their original containers with personal information blacked out. No liquids or sharps of any type will be accepted. Other unaccepted items include personal care items such as soaps and shampoos, empty containers, thermometers and used epi-pens.  (Mercury thermometers can be accepted at the following pharmacies: Macomb Pharmacy located at ProMedica Regional Hospital (formally Mercy Memorial Hospital), Medicine Shoppe Pharmacy in Lambertville and Monroe County Health Department in Monroe. 

Red Med Bin Locations (Please call ahead for hours of operation if not listed below):

  • City of Monroe Police Department - 734-243-7500
  • Monroe Post of the Michigan State Police - Open Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.
  • Monroe County Sheriff Office Bedford Substation - 734-847-6146
  • Erie Township Police Station - 734-848-4082
  • Village of Dundee Police Station - Open Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
  • Village of Carleton Police Station - Open Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.

 Battery and CFL Bulb Recycling Program

You can recycle your CFL (the spiral ones), LED bulbs and batteries at several locations around the county.  
Monroe County CFL, LED, and Battery Recycling Locations: 

  • Dundee Ace Hardware – 545 E. Monroe St., Dundee (batteries and bulbs)
  • Lambertville Do it Best Hardware – 8100 Secor Rd., Lambertville (bulbs only)
  • Bedford Township Hall - 8100 Jackman Rd, Temperance, MI 48182 (In the green electronics bin- batteries only)
  • St. Pierre Ace Hardware – 1490 Stewart Rd., Monroe (batteries and bulbs)
  • Baker’s Ace Hardware – 905 N. Dixie Hwy., Monroe (batteries and bulbs)
  • Dundee Kroger Store - 571 E. Monroe St. Dundee (batteries only)
  • Monroe County Health Department - 2353 S. Custer Road (batteries and bulbs)
  • Banas Lumber & Hardware - 8771 Ida Maybee Rd (batteries and bulbs)

Batteries contain heavy metals and corrosive chemicals that can be dangerous to the environment, and health of the public, if not disposed of properly. Half of the mercury, 65% of the lead and 75% of the cadmium, in residential trash is from discarded batteries.  While each battery has only a small amount of these compounds, as a community we discard nearly 1.5 million batteries every year.  Unfortunately, the things we commonly do to dispose of residential solid waste does not keep these materials from affecting the environment.  Home trash burning puts pollutants in the air immediately.  Even landfills, the most common destination of solid waste in Monroe County, could possibly leak pollutants into the water table over time.  Monroe County consumers can do their part by choosing better disposal options for batteries.

Click here to learn what happens to all those batteries.

Click here for how to prepare your batteries for drop off

Please observe the following DOs and DON'Ts at the drop-off locations.

  • Clear tape required on ALL Lithium & Lithium-ion batteries, Lead Acid Batteries, All electronic batteries if casing is cracked or it has exposed terminals), All Batteries over 9 Volts
  • Do bag button batteries.
  • Don't place batteries outside the collection receptacle.
  • Do make sure the battery is discharged (has no power left).
  • Don't disassemble batteries before placing in a receptacle.
Cleaning up a broken CFL- click here for instructions

 Electronics Recycling


The Recycling and Green Community Program in partnership with the Habitat for Humanity Restore offer FREE recycling of electronics on an ongoing basis. The Restore will accept computer systems, monitors, CPU's, printers, keyboards, peripherals, laptops, and televisions. The Habitat for Humanity Restore is located at 840 LaPlaisance Road in Monroe. They will accept materials from 10:00 am until 5:00 pm Tuesday through Saturday, they are closed on Sunday and Monday.  For questions, please contact the Restore at (734) 243-1108 or the Monroe County Recycling and Green Community Program Coordinator at (734) 240-7909.

                                                                                    ***NEW DROP-OFF LOCATION***
Bedford Township Hall located at 8100 Jackman Rd, Temperance, MI 48182, now has electronics recycling drop off smaller items. Microwave ovens and other electronic waste items that are too big for the Recycle IT bin opening at the Bedford Township Hall and can be dropped off at the ReStore or just a few miles away at Recycle IT, USA Toledo, 5265 Tractor Rd., Suite L, Toledo, Ohio. Recycle IT can be reached at (833) 419-2989.

Accepted items at this location are as follows: 
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2021 Secure Document Shredding      


Monroe Township Hall -  4925 E Dunbar Rd, Monroe, MI 48161
Saturday, August 14th 8am-12pm (HHW/Document shredding)

Bedford Township (NEW LOCATION) – Indian Creek Park - 8486 Douglas Road, Lambertville, MI 48144
Wednesday, June 16th, 3-7pm (HHW/Document shredding)

***There is a limit of 100 pounds per vehicle***

Additionally, The UPS Store and most office supply stores offer secure document shredding for < $1/lb  

Staples (734) 457-0135 and UPS store (734) 240-1163 Both offer the service


 Environmental Fund Grant Program

The Monroe County Environmental Fund is a grant program to provide and leverage resources to foster the development of a sustainable community. The goal of this program is to enhance, restore or protect natural surroundings, promote utilization of green technology and planning tools, and catalyze progress towards environmental stewardship. 

Please note: The Evaluation Committee meets two times each year, in April & November. In order for your request to be considered, it should be received by the fifteenth day of March & October. After review by the Evaluation Committee, final decisions will be made and grant recipients will be announced.

Click here for Environmental Fund Grant application materials 


Please contact the Monroe County Recycling and Green Community Program

Dan Rock (734) 240-7909 or dan_rock@monroemi.org

Monroe County Environmental Health Division
2353 S. Custer Rd, Monroe, MI  48161-2234