The Illinois EPA Materials Management Unit supports programs and provides information that help Illinois residents maximize the amount of material diverted from landfills. This includes offering recycling guidance, coordinating household hazardous waste collection, and supporting medication collection activities across the State of Illinois.
In addition to providing general recycling guidance this Unit oversees specific material recycling including recovery and reuse, reconditioning, and material salvage of electronics products; food waste reduction; and encourages composting programs to put nutrients back into Illinois soil once that food waste can no longer be used any other way.
Once certain items are past the point of recycling, the Illinois EPA facilitates collection, transportation, and disposal of some materials.
- Single-day household hazardous waste collections, are held annually throughout the State in rotating locations. These events constitute joint efforts between the unit of local government or associated organization and the Illinois EPA. Under this agreement, the collection event location procurement, advertising, and some staffing is provided by the local entity while packaging, transportation, and disposal is provided by Illinois EPA.
- In concert with these one-day events, the Illinois EPA also provides transportation and disposal of household hazardous waste collected at four long-term collection facilities within the State. These sites collect the same types of waste as are accepted at one-day collection events, including oil based paint. Latex paint is generally not accepted, so individuals with latex paint may benefit from these latex paint disposal alternatives.
- Finally, pharmaceutical waste and medical sharp collections in Illinois are implemented by the Illinois EPA in order to protect human health and the environment from groundwater contamination, accidental poisonings, and to stem the potential for misuse of such unused medications.