Recycling & Materials Management

Health Monroe - Recycling and Green Community ProgramOffice of Recycling & Green Community

The 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 order of the three R's is purposeful and based on their environmental impact? Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle are intentionally listed to prioritize the most effective ways to protect our planet. 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. 

Another impactful way to prevent pollution and waste is by reusing what we already own. For instance, a reusable water bottle can prevent thousands of plastic bottles from becoming pollution ending up in landfills, the ocean, or incinerators. Recycling should be considered a last resort due to the abysmally low recycling rate, especially plastic (only around 5% in the US). It's crucial to recognize that every new purchase we make has an environmental impact. 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." 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 those who use the bins as rubbish collection sites, wishcycle items that are not recyclable or don't break down their boxes and take up far more space than needed. 

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 2023 Recycling Events Calendar is here! (Click to view/download)

2023 Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) and Document Shredding Events:

Monroe Charter Township Hall - 4925 E Dunbar Rd, Monroe
Tuesday, May 9th, 3 - 7 pm HHW only 
Saturday, August 12th, 8 am - 12 pm HHW and Shredding  

Bedford - Indian Creek Park - 8486 Douglas Road, Temperance
Wednesday, June 14th, 3 - 7 pm HHW and Shredding 
Saturday, September 16th, 8 am - 12 pm HHW only