Zero Waste

What is Zero Waste?

Zero waste means setting a new standard for how we as a society view and treat waste. The goal of zero waste programs is to reduce—and eventually eliminate—what we discard in landfills and incinerators.

The City of Minneapolis is widely recognized as a regional and national leader in waste reduction and recycling. We can still do more. Achieving zero waste not only helps us serve as better stewards of our environment, but also can grow our economy, and advance our work in environmental justice.

City Recycling and Composting Goal

In June 2015 the Minneapolis City Council established a goal to recycle and compost 50% of its citywide waste by 2020 and 80% by 2030. The resolution also called to achieve zero-percent growth in the City’s total waste stream from levels set in 2010.  In 2015 the city of Minneapolis formed the Zero Waste Project Team to develop a plan to meet those goals and set new ones. 

2019 - 2021 Zero Waste Implementation Plan

When the Zero Waste Plan was adopted, Solid Waste & Recycling was directed to coordinate the development of a three-year implementation plan of select priority strategies identified in the Zero Waste Plan.  Representatives from Regulatory Services, CPED, and the Health Department were also directed to participate in the planning process and staff are to return to Council by June 2018 with the 2019-2021 zero-waste implementation plan. 

The City continues to accept comments on strategies identified in the Zero Waste Plan as they develop the 2019-2021 implementation plan.  Please send any comments to: [email protected].

Overview of Zero Waste Plan PowerPoint Presentation

Zero Waste Plan

 The Zero Waste Project Team was comprised of staff from the Mayor’s Office, Council Member’s offices, the City Coordinator’s office; the Department of Public Works and the Health Department..

The draft plan was released on September 6, 2017 and the final plan was brought to the City's Transportation & Public Works Council Committee on November 28, 2017 and adopted by the City Council on December 8, 2017.

Zero Waste plan documents:

Past Relevant Work

Stakeholder Engagement pre-Zero Waste plan development (September - October 2016)

The City of Minneapolis hosted several series of engagement sessions prior to the development of the plan.  Three meetings were held, one for the residential sector, one for the multiunit sector and one for the commercial sector to educate stakeholders on the City's zero waste planning process and goals and to obtain feedback from stakeholders on barriers and strategies to the City meeting it's zero waste goals.  Feedback received from stakeholders was summarized and evaluated in the development of the zero waste plan. 

Commercial Waste Collection Evaluation Study (May 2017)

In February 2015, the City Council approved acceptance of a grant from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) to complete an evaluation fo the commercial waste system in Minneapolis.  The study included an evaluation of existing conditions, a survey to businesses, a review of best practices from peer cities, and identification of the potential environmental benefits of program change.  The study researched possible pathways to increase diversion of commercial, industrial, and multifamily waste through alternative commercial collection programs and approaches.  The project team held a series of stakeholder engagement meetings for a presentation of the study's findings on March 23, 2017.  The findings of this study assisted in the development of the City's zero Waste Plan. 


Last updated Jun 1, 2018