What is a solid waste district?

Solid Waste Management Districts are organizations, created by State law, to promote and encourage recycling and plan for responsible waste management in Ohio. In addition to promoting and implementing recycling programs, this also entails ensuring that adequate disposal capacity exists for our garbage, providing funding for health departments, and ensuring that collection mechanisms exist for other materials such as hazardous household chemicals, tires, electronics, etc.

Districts were formed to respond to the problem of declining landfill capacity and low, stagnant recycling rates in the State. In order to address these issues, the State put in place local organizations (Districts) to respond to these issues through implementation of comprehensive, local solid waste management planning processes.

Solid Waste Districts exist at the County level and are comprised of either single counties or multiple counties called joint districts. One of the benefits of the solid waste district system is that it enables the implementation of waste management plans and programs that are consistent with the needs and philosophies of local communities. This is seen in practice, as the types and nature of district programming varies widely from district to district.

As a result of this flexible system, Ohio has made great strides toward implementing recycling programs and reducing the amount of recyclables headed to landfill.

Solid Waste Management Districts implement various programs in order to reduce Ohio’s reliance on landfills and to ensure adequate disposal capacity. The number and types of programs are just as varied as the 52 districts currently existing in Ohio, but some examples include:

  • Curbside Recycling
  • Drop-off Recycling
  • Household Hazardous Waste Collections
  • Scrap Tire Clean-ups
  • Computer and Electronics Collections
  • Composting and Yardwaste Management Programs
  • Recycling Market Development
  • Technical Assistance to Communities and Businesses
  • Education and Awareness