In Tacoma, you can lower the cost of your waste service by decreasing your garbage capacity.
Kitchen scraps account for ~28%* of Tacoma’s residential waste stream by weight. By putting your kitchen scraps in the Mill kitchen bin rather than your garbage container, you can significantly reduce the volume of waste created by your household.
As you reduce the amount of kitchen scraps tossed in the garbage, you may find that you can downsize your garbage container - which can save your household up to $25.60 per month! Use this savings to help offset the cost of your Mill Plan.
What size garbage container do I have?
- A great place to check is the back of your utility bill. See services listed under “Solid Waste and Recycling.”
- The City of Tacoma lists container dimensions here.
- Curbside containers are marked with serial numbers. The following are examples of 90-gallon cart serial numbers:
(note, there are many numbering conventions in the field, this list is not inclusive of all variations)
How do I downsize my service?
Call Tacoma Solid Waste Management at (253) 502-2100 to discuss downsizing your collection container. You may want to wait until you live with your Mill kitchen bin for a couple of weeks to make sure you don’t overflow your curbside container.
How do I know if I can downsize?
You can shift to a smaller container if you are seeing that on service day, you have notable empty space in your container (15 - 30-gal, depending on downsizing options available). In addition to preventing waste, a Mill Plan may reduce how much trash you produce by helping create behavior change around waste production and sorting.
I’m sooo close to being able to downsize. What else can I do?
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle! Check out guidance from the EPA.
A few quick tips:
- Food takeout packaging can take up a lot of space. Bring your own reusable containers to remove this bulky material.
- Make sure you are maximizing your recycling potential. See what’s recyclable for Tacoma residents here. Note, for items like glass bottles and plastic bags, this means taking advantage of drop-off services.
- Donate clothing, books, and anything else reusable. Find donation opportunities in Pierce County here.