Ada County Landfill & Hazardous Waste Facility

August 21, 2018 - Trash Doesn't Just Disappear

A landfill is a place where everyone knows it's there, but you don't know what it is or what they do. Just because our trash goes to the landfill, doesn't mean it disappears; work has to be done with those materials. Reduce, reuse and recycle materials is at the heart of the work the City of Boise undertakes to manage the materials generated in our community. We believe in innovation and continual evaluation to address our materials management issues. On August 21, the ambassadors learned all about materials management within the landfill and all the work that goes into it.

Sign for Ada County Landfill

What is Materials Management?

The materials management program oversees, trash, recycling, compost, and household hazardous waste services for residents and businesses. Some of the work done includes:

  • Manage trash disposal with direct hauls to the Ada County Landfill and through two transfer stations where trash is consolidated into larger trailers to improve efficiency in hauling to the landfill.
  • Collect recyclable materials and sending those materials to Western Recycling on South Cole Road in Boise. Western sorts the recyclable materials and markets them to regional, national and international buyers.
  • Collect compost from residential customers and delivered to the Twenty Mile South Compost Facility.
  • Assist with the Household hazardous waste (HHW) collection, which is a cooperative program with Ada County and other cities within the county. Ada County pays for the collection contractor and disposal/recycling costs of the materials collected from households in all of Ada County. Boise owns three collection vehicles and offers the greatest number of collection locations. The HHW program also provides a small business program to assist businesses - with the proper disposal of small amounts of hazardous wastes.
Man speaking to group
Chad Schwend, Ada County Environmental Compliance Coordinator, talking about gas-to-energy program
Group of people standing in front of a tractor moving trash
The Livability Ambassadors on the ground in the midst of a few day’s worth of landfill garbage
Aerial view of landfill
A view from atop of just a few days-worth of landfill garbage from Ada County.

Why Waste Management?

Protection of health and the environment is the foundation for the materials management program. We are given the authority through the Idaho State Constitution to manage and run the Materials Management Program because it protects the environment and public health. The city has implemented numerous programs to ensure protection of public health and safety, as well as environmental protection from improper disposal of trash and hazardous wastes. The citizens of Boise requested the opportunity to recycle materials starting in 1992 and the commitment to reduce, reuse and recycle is a core value for the community. The Solid Waste Strategic Plan provided the foundation for materials management efforts since 2009.

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