Planning for the Future in franklin county

Central Ohio’s recycling and sustainability efforts are getting noticed but we’re not done yet. Learn about what we have in store for 2021 and beyond that will help us reach greater rates of diversion and further reduce our reliance on the landfill.

$54.4 million projected revenues for 2021

Looking Forward to 2021 and Beyond

When 2021 approached, SWACO started the new year with a revamped mission statement and strategy to focus our work from now until 2032. Our efforts are focused on 3 primary areas of work: solid waste disposal, recycling and reduction of waste stream materials, and providing leadership, advocacy and excellence across the Solid Waste District.

While there is a lot of work to be done, we’re confident that we’ll reach these milestones by working together.

Board of Trustees

Our work is guided by not only the expertise of SWACO’s executive leadership and management but by a diverse and engaged group of trustees.

Together, SWACO’s Board of Trustees meets monthly and represents the interests of residents, communities, and our customers, but also represents industrial, commercial and institutional waste generators, and the public health district.

With $54.4 million projected revenues for 2021, the board oversees decisions being made to provide for the safe and innovative operation of Franklin County’s only municipal solid waste landfill, and also residential and commercial programs and services that help reduce the community’s reliance on the landfill.

Susan Tilgner, Chair
Joe Lombardi, Vice Chair
Hon. Kevin Boyce
Patrick King
Ken Wilson
Tracie Davies
Brian Will
Nikki Lemin
Jim Rauck
Jessica Sullivan

2021 Projects

In addition to continuing all ongoing projects, SWACO’s budget also includes several new initiatives this year to further assist the community in reaching our diversion goals.

Expanded Residential Plastics Recycling Program

In January, Rumpke Waste and Recycling announced that Franklin County’s residential recycling program would begin to accept plastic tubs (like those used for butter, cottage cheese, and sour cream) and all yogurt containers in addition to plastic bottles and jugs. These new developments help us improve our recycling efforts on a larger scale.

Most of these materials will remain right here in Ohio, where they’ll be transformed into new products like plastic lumber used for park benches and play structures for children.


Multifamily Housing Recycling Pilot

As the Central Ohio region continues to grow, managing our waste stream will continue to be an important endeavor we all undertake to protect the health of our environment and economy.

Tackling the commercial sector’s waste stream will be an important activity since most waste is generated by this sector. This includes working with local apartment complexes, many of which don’t currently offer easy recycling opportunities to renters.

This year, SWACO will team up with the city of Columbus to pilot a recycling program aimed at helping residents in apartments, condos, and other multi-family housing units recycle more conveniently.

With more than half of Columbus’ residents renting their homes, it is critical to connect these families and individuals with easier access to recycling at home and provide them with educational information from our Recycle Right, Make a Difference campaign.

Together, our efforts will go a long way in helping Central Ohio exceed national recycling rates. Any future success with this program could create a multi-family housing recycling program model replicated in communities throughout the Solid Waste District.

Bringing a National Focus to Central Ohio

Natural Resources Defense Council Food Matters Project in the Great Lakes Region

Collaboration on implementing policies and programs to reduce food waste.
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Last year, SWACO joined the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the cities of Chicago, Cincinnati, Madison, and Make Food Not Waste in Detroit to collaborate on implementing policies and programs to reduce food waste while fostering regional collaboration.

SWACO’s participation in this effort will continue this year.

Circular Great Lakes Launches to Tackle Plastic Waste and Pollution

bringing together industry, government, academia and the non-profit sectors to transform infrastructure and mindsets
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SWACO is pleased to announce that it has joined Circular Great Lakes as a knowledge partner, a regional initiative led by the Council of the Great Lakes Region (CGLR). Through the initiative, SWACO and other partners from industry, government, academia, and the non-profit sector will work closely with CGLR to define a strategy and five year action plan that paves the way for accelerating and achieving a zero plastic waste economy in the binational Great Lakes region. To learn more about this partnership and plan, click here.

The Recycling Partnership Recycling Cart Grants and Feet on the Street Cart Tagging Programs

enhancing the recycling infrastructure of communities in Central Ohio
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SWACO continues to work with The Recycling Partnership, a national nonprofit organization that leverages corporate partner funding to transform recycling for good in states, cities, and communities nationwide, to bring improved recycling carts and education to the Central Ohio Region. Coupled with the Recycle Right, Make a Difference program, these efforts make it possible for communities in Central Ohio to enhance their recycling infrastructure. To learn more about this program, click here.

Making a Difference

A Letter From SWACO’s Board Chair and Executive Director

Read the Letter