City of Spokane Waste Management

May 14, 2022

Single Stream Recycling

Spokane provides a comprehensive solid waste collection and disposal system that stresses the priorities of reduce, reuse, and recycle. We use a single-stream recycling system, which allows significantly more recyclables to be collected curbside than ever before.

In the first year of single-stream recycling, City of Spokane residential solid waste customers increased their recycling by 80 percent. And about 6, 000 customers downsized their garbage carts in the first 15 months because they were recycling so much.

Each residential customer is provided with a 64-gallon rolling cart with handles—nicknamed “Big Blue”—to collect recyclables. The blue carts allow for fully automated collection, increasing efficiencies and reducing operating costs. Position your recycling cart at least 3 feet away from other collection carts or objects.

The recyclables that are collected are taken to a new facility owned and operated by private company, Waste Management, where they are sorted, processed, and prepared for marketing. View the Smart Recycling page of their website.

Spokane County recycling grew to its highest level yet in 2012, reaching 54.7 percent. Spokane County residents and businesses recycled 352, 912 tons of the 645, 250 tons of municipal solid waste generated in 2012. The Spokane County rate exceeds the Washington statewide recycling rate of 50.1 percent.

What's accepted:



  • Newspaper & phone books
  • Corrugated cardboard
  • Magazines & catalogs
  • Printer paper & junk mail
  • Cereal, pop, and shoe boxes
  • Non-shiny paper products
  • Clean pizza boxes


  • Aluminum cans & foil
  • Tin, steel & metal cans
  • Empty aerosol cans
  • Small pieces of scrap metal


  • Bottles, jars & tubs (no lids)

Don't put garbage, plastic bags, Styrofoam, food contaminated items, microwave trays, ceramics and dishes, light bulbs, window glass and mirrors, hazardous waste containers, syringes, un-numbered plastics, lids, sharp metal, shredded paper, coated or laminated paper products, electronics or batteries in your recycling cart.

Other tips:

  • Household batteries can be placed in a clear plastic bag and placed on top of the Single Stream Recycling Cart lid.
  • If you have more recycling than can fit in your cart, please hold onto it until the next week.
  • Call 509.625.7894 to schedule a one-time courtesy pickup for moving boxes and packing paper.

Missed? The City of Spokane Solid Waste Collection is dedicated to providing efficient and friendly service. If for some reason we have missed your collection, please call us immediately at 509.625.7878 and we will make every effort to return within the same day or the next to remedy this situation.

Commercial Recycling:

Our commercial single stream recycling customers include businesses, schools, and most multi-family buildings. This service collects the same materials as the residential service. Commercial customers can choose recycling carts or dumpsters for their recycling needs. More information is available on our Commercial Services pages.

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