We Are Zero Waste Boulder

Instructions and Tips for Successful and Compliant Waste Disposal

Sorting Waste

Separated waste collections for recycling, compostable materials and landfill-bound trash are available everywhere you go in Boulder. There are also numerous facilities that accept many additional materials for reuse or sustainable disposal.

What goes where?

Watch a Short Video

Our Sorting 101 video covers the basics of what can go in trash, compost and recycling bins.

There is also a Spanish version.

Play the Sorting Game

This fun and easy quiz tests your knowledge of common and confusing items http://boulder.recycle.game

Visit Eco-Cycle's Website

Eco-Cycle has information for items from A-Z on where things should go in Boulder County. There is also an available mobile app for this.

Waste Haulers

Subscribe to Service

These local waste haulers can help you sign up for recycling and compost collection service. The city does not determine or control rates nor dictate appropriate levels of service. Customers are encouraged to ask for cost estimates from multiple haulers. If you contract for trash services, contact these haulers directly to sign up for additional services.

If trash service is provided by your property manager or owner, let them know about Boulder’s requirements, which include subscribing to recycling and compost collection services.

Issues with Service

The city does not provide municipal waste hauling. Please follow up with your waste company directly for concerns over service.

Collection Containers

Containers for collecting all three waste streams are provided by the waste haulers, and some residents in Boulder are required to secure their waste from bears. Please discuss obtaining the correct containers for your needs and location with your contracted hauler.

Eco-Leader Program


Decades of research have shown that the most effective way to spur social change is through peer-to-peer influence. In partnership with Eco-Cycle, the City of Boulder is providing training and support to people in our community to become multi-family complex (MFC) Eco-Leaders. MFC Eco-Leaders help their housing complex neighbors and friends learn about zero waste and help maintain a successful waste diversion program in their communities.

Visit the Eco-Leader Page to Sign Up

The city partners with Eco-Cycle to manage to Eco-Leader program. Even if you don't live in the City of Boulder or a multi-family complex, you can sign up to help out wherever you work or live in Boulder County. Eco-Cycle's Eco-Leader page has all the information you need to get started!

Properties or Businesses Lacking Service, Bins or Signs

The Universal Zero Waste Ordinance requires property owners provide adequate composting, recycling and trash service to their tenants and occupants (BRC 1981 6-3-13). In addition, businesses must separate recyclables and compostables from the trash; provide properly placed containers and signs to facilitate the collection of recyclables and compostables (BRC 1981 6-3-14).

Let the city know if a business you frequent might need help with zero waste bins, signs or education or if a commercial or residential property may be lacking service.

*Please note that Inquire Boulder is not as well supported by some browsers, like Internet Explorer.

The Inquire Boulder form can be used to report:

  • A house, apartment building, HOA or condo complex without recycling, compostables and/or trash collection service
  • A business or commercial property owner that doesn't offer recycling, compostables and/or trash collection service
  • A business with incorrect or missing signs and/or bins for customer and/or employee use