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Solid Waste Program

About the Program

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Solid Waste Program

Solid Waste Program to Monitor Solid Waste

Frequently Asked Questions:

Do I have to have garbage service?
Yes, Whatcom County requires the transportation and disposal of solid waste by qualified providers.  An exemption is allowed.  You can contact the County Public Works Solid Waste Division at (360) 676-7695 to see if you qualify for the exemption.

Can't I just burn my garbage?
Burning garbage is illegal and can be dangerous.  Breathing smoke from burning garbage can cause or worsen asthma, bronchitis and emphysema and damage children's lungs.  Burning plastic releases many cancer causing agents into the air that you or your neighbors breathe.

Can I burn my yard waste?
Burning yard waste is now illegal if you live in a city with more than 5,000 people.  Breathing smoke from any fire can worsen serious lung conditions.  Other opportunities such as reducing the quantity of waste, shredding, composting and chipping are options.  Transfer stations and the City of Bellingham Clean Green site will also take your yard waste.

What are the requirements for storing garbage?
Garbage must be stored in a rigid, durable container with a tight fitting lid.  This type of container prevents rodents and insects from getting into the garbage and potentially spreading diseases to your neighbors.

Where can I dispose of household hazardous wastes like paints, solvents, cleaners, and gasoline?
The Disposal of Toxics Facility is located at 3505 Airport Drive in Bellingham.  The phone number is (360) 380-4640.  They can also provide information regarding other recycling opportunities.

Where can I dispose of used oil and antifreeze?
These items should be separated and stored in a sealed plastic container with tight fitting lid and taken to:

  • The Disposal of Toxics Facility, 3505 Airport Drive 
  • Birch Bay Lynden Drop Box, 4294 Birch Bay Lynden Road
  • Nooksack Valley Disposal Drop Box, 250 Birch Bay Lynden Road
  • Cedarville Drop Box, Cedarville Road, ¼ north of the Mt. Baker Highway
  • Water District #10, 1010 Lakeview Street

How do I dispose of waste needles that I generate in my home?
See recommendations for disposal of residential sharps.

About the Solid Waste Program

The Environmental Health Division's Solid Waste Program performs a wide variety of activities to monitor and assure the proper handling and disposal of Solid Waste in Whatcom County.  For information on disposal of solid waste, please visit Public Works Solid Waste Division. Our activities include:

  • Application review for new and expanded Solid Waste Facilities
  • Permit Issuance
  • Routine inspections of permitted facilities
  • Investigations of illegal dumping, garbage handling and contamination associated with landfills
  • Enforcement of SW Codes, e.g. WCC 24.06, WAC 173-304, WCC 8.08
  • Oversight at Biosolids Application Sites
  • Homeowner education regarding composting, recycling, proper disposal and handling of household hazardous wastes and biomedical waste
  • Education and oversight of generators, transporters and treatment facilities of biomedical waste

Contact Information

Whatcom County Health Department
Environmental Health Division
509 Girard Street
Solid Waste Program
Bellingham, WA 98225

Phone: (360) 676-6724
Fax: (360) 676-6771

Program Supervisor: Jeffrey Hegedus



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