Portland Progress

waste reduction


(updated December 2023)

WR 1.1 Pay-As-You-Throw (South Portland)

Expand a pay-as-you-throw system to South Portland.

Status: N/A

Update: This is a South Portland-specific strategy. Click here to visit South Portland’s WR Progress Dashboard.

Key Milestones: Implement PAYT program in South Portland by 2026.

WR 1.2 Single-Stream Recycling

Mandate recycling for commercial and multifamily buildings.

Status: Not Started

Update: Upcoming, continue improving education and enforcement of existing multi-family recycling. (updated December 2023)

Key Milestones: Require recycling in commercial and multifamily residential buildings by 2026.

WR 1.3 Food Waste Reduction and Organics Recycling

Expand programs to divert food waste and increase organics recycling rates to ensure that excess food is better used to nourish people, animals, industries, and soils.

Status: In Progress

Update: Launched City’s first public food waste recycling program, a pilot drop-off program with 5 collection sites (2021). Increased program use allowed for the addition of 5 more drop-off sites. Translating drop off location signs and educational materials into six languages other than English. Printed door hangers and distributed them to homes in several neighborhoods. (updated December 2023)

Key Milestones: Reduce food waste in trash stream 70% by 2040.

WR 1.4 Single-Use Plastics

Ban select single-use plastics and identify partnerships to reduce plastic waste,

Status: In Progress

Update: Rolled out Phase II of the Straw Ban in April 2021 and created a retailer FAQ page with best practices (2021). Working with retailers to reduce single-use plastics.

Key Milestones: Eliminate single-use plastics in the cities to the fullest extent practicable by 2026.

WR 1.5 Circular Sharing Economy

Foster a circular and sharing economy.

Status: In Progress

UpdateApril 2023 Coffee & Climate conversation focused on the establishment of sharing economies. Supporting local groups working to establish a commercial reuse program. (updated December 2023)

Key Milestones: Ongoing efforts to establish new spaces, programs, or initiatives in each city that support resource sharing, reuse, or repair

WR 2.1 Construction and New Demolition Waste

Reduce construction and demolition waste through targeted re-use initiatives.

Status: Not Started

Update: Mid-term Strategy

Key Milestone: Adopt C&D waste reduction targets and ordinance by 2035.

WR 2.2 Industrial Waste

Work with state and regional partners to encourage “by-product synergy” with industrial waste streams.

Status: Not Started

Update: Long-term Strategy

Key Milestone: Regional materials marketplace launched by 2035

WR 2.3 Wastewater Emissions

Investigate options for reducing emissions of wastewater treatment with anaerobic digestion.

Status: Not Started

Update: Long-term Strategy

Key Milestone: Engineering feasibility study commissioned by 2032

WR 2.4 Sustainable Purchasing Policy

Adopt a sustainable purchasing policy for municipal procurement.

Status: In Progress

Update: None

Key Milestone: Sustainable purchasing policy adopted by 2024