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Phone: 503-823-7700

Curbside Hotline: 503-823-7202

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News and Tips on Garbage, Recycling, Composting and Reducing Waste at Home


KATU’s Afternoon Live and BPS show you how to include the food for Earth Day

Make Earth Day every day by collecting kitchen food scraps for your green roll cart

When you keep food scraps out of the landfill, you celebrate Earth Day every day of the year!

Alicia Polacok from the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability shares why, how and when to collect your kitchen food scraps for curbside composting (for Portland residents who live in a single-family home or smallplex of 2-4 units).

Watch the video from KATU Afternoon Live and learn some new tips!

Video of Alicia Polacok at KATU

Want to see more videos about your green Portland Composts! roll cart?
Check them out online at www.portlandcomposts.com.

Community Collection Events offer neighbors spring cleaning disposal options

These events do not accept household hazardous waste, construction demolition and remodeling debris and asbestos-containing materials.

For a reasonable donation / fee, Portland residents can participate in the over 40 Community Collection Events scheduled in April and May. Materials accepted at collection events vary, from bulky items like furniture, mattresses and appliances, to items for recycling and reuse like scrap metal and household goods.

Community Collection Events welcome a wide range of Portland residents, including seniors and people with disabilities. Portland’s Neighborhood Coalitions, the City of Portland, and Metro collaborate to sponsor these events to invest in and build community capacity, including advancing equity, waste reduction and reuse.

Items not accepted at these events include: Hazardous waste materials; all construction, remodeling or demolition materials (see examples below); all kitchen garbage; residential yard debris and trimmings; commercial landscaping; roofing; waste and recyclables collected curbside; and waste not allowed at a regional transfer station.

Read the FAQ about asbestos containing materials at the Metro transfer stations. New rules apply as of April 1, 2017.

Your support in protecting neighborhood volunteers and transfer station staff from exposure to asbestos and keeping our neighborhoods clean and safe is appreciated.

Need to find contact information for your neighborhood association?
Contact the Office of Neighborhood Involvement or call 503-823-4519.  

Have bulky items at other times of the year?
Your garbage and recycling company can remove large items that are not reusable or recyclable for an extra charge. Here are some tips:

  • Call your company a week in advance and they will give you a cost estimate.
  • For a reasonable charge, they will pick up appliances, furniture, large branches, stumps and other big items.
  • For curbside pickup, set bulky items at your curb on the day your garbage and recycling company has agreed to pick them up. 

No foolin’! Soon you’ll get a dime instead of a nickel at bottle return centers

Deposit on bottles increases to a dime on April 1, 2017.

Starting April 1, 2017, consumers get a dime back for carbonated beverages and water containers recycled at a return center. This is the first increase in the Oregon Bottle Bill’s 45-year history.

Illustration of bottle with 5 cent label

The Bottle Bill is good for recycling

Oregon was the first state to enact a redemption program back in 1971, and early on, it was clear the program worked. The Bottle Bill collected more than 90 percent of the bottles and cans and reduced litter by 77 percent.

When Oregonians take bottles separately to be redeemed, they make it easier for our local recyclers to turn them into something new. Plus, you can get some money back!

As a reminder, the types of beverages that are part of the current Bottle Bill include carbonated soft drinks, beer, malt beverages, bottled water, flavored water, soda water and mineral water.

Portland residents have options when it comes to redeeming beverage containers. That includes taking containers to a local retailer or to a Bottle Drop Center to redeem these for money. Many of these containers are recycled right in our region. Learn more at www.bottledropcenters.com

As always, bottles and cans can still be set out for curbside collection without collecting that dime. At curbside, recycle soda and beer cans and plastic beverage bottles in your blue recycling roll cart and glass beer bottles in your yellow recycling bin.

Look for another change beginning January 1, 2018. That’s when more types of beverage containers will carry a deposit, including those for tea, coffee, fruit juice, coconut water, hard cider and kombucha.

Have a question for our Curbside Hotline Operator?
Submit your question online or call 503-823-7202.

Ask the Curbside Hotline Operator: Can I recycle coffee cups in my curbside bin?

What to do with paper coffee cups.

Coffee cup with lid

Q: Can I recycle coffee cups in my curbside bin?

A: No, paper coffee cups don’t belong in either the blue recycling roll cart or the green compost roll cart. They do belong in the garbage container.

Coffee cups are made up of paper that is injected with a plastic film so the cup holds its shape with hot (or cold) beverages. Paper cups are not recyclable because of the plastic liner and coffee contamination and don’t break down at the recycling facility with other paper products.

The same is true for paper products that hold freezer or refrigerated foods. Items like butter boxes, ice cream containers and frozen dinner boxes also belong in the garbage.

Choose to reuse
Travel mugCeramic mugYou can choose to bring your own coffee mug or container to your favorite shop. Some shops offer a small discount for doing so. There’s even a campaign about it called BYOC: Bring Your Own Cup!

Interested in learning more about the Bring Your Own Cup campaign?
The nonprofit Recycling Advocates is focusing on reducing the number of disposable, single use coffee cups going into area landfills.

Have a question for our Curbside Hotline Operator?
Submit your question online or call 503-823-7202.

Community recycling offers options beyond the curb

Portland residents have many options to properly dispose of a wide variety of items, however, there are some materials that cannot be left at the curb – we call these materials “non-curbside” items.

Recycling depots accept many non-curbside items, including three Far West Recycling locations in Portland. There are also community events that offer ways for residents to drop off materials for recycling and proper disposal. These events are free but appreciate donations.

Community Recycling hosts events each year that collect and recycle many items not eligible for curbside disposal. The next event is Saturday, March 18, 2017 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. in Southwest Portland.

Review the website for details on what to bring and how to prepare the accepted items.

Accepted items include:

  • CFL lightbulbs
  • Bulky, rigid plastics
  • Corks
  • Batteries
  • Ink and toner cartridges
  • Holiday lights
  • Electronics
  • Block Styrofoam

Community Recycling

Community Recycling
Saturday, March 18, 2017
9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
St John Fisher Parish parking lot, 7007 SW 46th Ave, Portland (enter by turning west off SW 45th Ave)

Donations accepted to help cover expenses and disposal costs for this all-volunteer, community event. Suggested donation is $3 for households, $5 for businesses per drop off.

Can’t make the event and interested in disposing other items not accepted at the curb? Contact the Metro Recycling Information online or call 503-234-3000.