Public health agency for Snohomish County
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Solid Waste
The Solid Waste and Toxics (SWT) Program issues permits and conducts inspections of solid waste handling facilities (composting, energy recovery and incineration, inert waste landfill, material recovery, transfer station, drop box, moderate risk waste); investigates solid waste complaints and enforces regulations governing illegal dumping, uncontained garbage, moderate risk waste, and rodents; monitors private water wells around landfills and provides assistance to small businesses about best management practices for their waste streams. Requirements for solid waste handling are regulated under the SHD Sanitary Code.
The Program investigates and resolves complaints concerning garbage accumulations, illegal dumping, neighborhood rat infestations and the improper storage or disposal of hazardous waste.
The Solid Waste and Toxics Section investigates complaints concerning the following activities:
  • Garbage - Improper storage, handling, and disposal practices that attract flies or rodents. This includes uncontained garbage, or garbage not removed weekly.
  • Hazardous Waste - Storage, handling, or disposal practices that allow toxic chemicals to be released to surface water, groundwater or soil.
  • Illegal Dumping - Garbage and/or other solid waste dumped on private or public property without the owner's permission.
  • Initial Investigations - The Health District works in cooperation with the Washington Department of Ecology to investigate releases or potential releases of chemicals to the environment.
  • Rodent/Vector - Conditions that are attracting or feeding rodents or vectors, causing a neighborhood infestation.
Conditions or situations NOT Investigated by the Health District
  1. Junk on Property or Code Violations. To report code violations regarding junk on property, accumulations of wood, inoperable cars, car parts, appliances, and furniture, please contact Snohomish County Code Enforcement or if you live within the city limits, please contact your City government.
  2. Air Quality or Burn Ban Enforcement. For information on air quality forecast, burn ban status, demolition information, asbestos project, and business related air emissions, please contact the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency. Please also contact your local fire districts regarding burning permits.
  3. Water Quality Issues Regarding Point Source and Non-point Source Pollution and Storm Water Pollution. Please contact Washington State Department of Ecology for water quality issues regarding point source and non-point source pollution and storm water pollution. Snohomish County Surface Water Management Division investigates possible violations of water pollution ordinances. Please contact Snohomish County Surface Water Management to report a water quality problem or for technical assistance.
  4. Hazardous Material Spill or Release. To report a spill of oil or hazardous materials, please contact your local fire department or the Washington State Department of Ecology.
  5. Pesticide Complaints. Complaints related to human health are investigated by Washington State Department of Health. Please contact the Washington State Department of Agriculture for complaints involving pesticides use, misuse, drift, damage, storage, and disposal.
How to File a Complaint
Contact the Health District at 425.339.5250 and file a complaint by giving all pertinent information to the person with office duties for the day. You will need to provide the location/address (including zip code) of the complaint; violation details; name of person causing violation (if known); and your name and phone number (kept confidential). If the violation concerns illegal dumping, provide the type of waste and volume. You can request a complaint form by mail or download a pdf complaint form. Mail or fax the completed form to the Health District. Please note that complaints turned in anonymously may not be investigated.
Safe Disposal of Unwanted Medicines
Keeping unused, unwanted and expired prescription drugs in your home poses a risk to you, your family and your community. For additional information and disposal locations click here.
Solid Waste Disposal and Recycling
The following are different types of solid waste and disposal options. For more information contact the Snohomish County Solid Waste Management Division, at 425.388.3425.
Demolition Waste
Demolition waste includes solid waste resulting from the demolition or razing of buildings and other man-made structures. This includes but is not limited to: concrete, brick, bituminous concrete, wood and masonry, composition roofing and roofing paper, steel, minor amounts of other materials like copper and plaster.
Demolition waste can be recycled (see Recycling Options below). Demolition waste can also be disposed of at Snohomish County solid waste facilities. There may be limitations on size; contact Snohomish County Solid Waste Management Division at 425.388.3425.
Garbage is unwanted animal and vegetable waste resulting from the handling, preparation, cooking and consumption of food, swill and carcasses of dead animals, and of such a character and proportion as to be capable of attracting or providing food for vectors (e.g. rats and flies.) Garbage or garbage combined with other solid waste must be disposed of at an approved Snohomish County solid waste facility. Click here for a list of solid waste facilities in Snohomish County.
Inert Waste
Inert waste includes, but is not limited to, cured concrete, brick, masonry, asphalt materials, ceramic materials, uncontaminated glass and stainless steel and aluminum. Inert waste must be disposed of in an approved inert waste landfill or other approved solid waste facility. For information on approved inert waste landfills contact our solid waste and toxics program at 425.339.5250.
Infectious Waste
Infectious waste is waste that may contain pathogens or other biologically active materials in sufficient concentrations that exposure to the waste directly or indirectly, creates a significant risk of disease. This includes:
  • Animal wastes that are infected with or inoculated with human pathogenic microorganisms infectious to humans.
  • Human blood and blood products containing free-flowing blood and blood products.
  • Cultures and stocks containing wastes infectious to humans.
  • Human waste source biopsy material, tissues, and anatomical parts from surgery, obstetrical procedures, and autopsy.
  • Waste contaminated with blood, excretions, exudates, or secretions from humans or animals who are isolated to protect others from highly communicable infectious diseases.
  • Sharps waste such as needles, scalpel blades, lancets, and microscopic slides in contact with the above mentioned wastes.
All infectious waste must be rendered non-infectious before disposal in the regular solid waste stream. For information call our Solid Waste and Toxics Program at 425.339.5250.
Sharps and body fluids must be kept out of the waste stream even if treated and are not accepted for disposal at Snohomish County solid waste facilities. A special "Sharps Collector" is available from some local pharmacies and other service providers. Once they are filled they can be returned to the store for safe disposal. There are also a private infectious waste disposal companies. For information and locations see Don't Needle Your Garbage Collector (Sharps) pdf.
Pet Waste
There are two options for dealing with pet waste:
  • Bagging: Pet wastes should be double-bagged, with the air removed, before being put into the garbage can. A maximum of 10 pounds of pet waste will be accepted at any Snohomish County Transfer Station at a time.
  • Flushing: Pet wastes (feces only) can be flushed down the toilet if it is not connected to a private septic system. Do not put cat litter down the toilet as it can clog the drain.
For more information on pet waste disposal click here.
Recycling Options
The following are some items that can be recycled. For recycling options or information please contact Snohomish County Solid Waste Management Division at 425.388.3425 or click here.
  • Automotive Materials - motor oil, batteries, used antifreeze, oil filters, tires
  • Cans - aluminum, tin
  • Construction and remodeling debris
  • Demolition Waste
  • Glass - bottles, jars
  • Latex paints and stains
  • Major Appliances - refrigerators, freezers, air conditioners, stoves, water heaters, washers, dryers
  • Paper - newspaper, mixed paper, corrugated cardboard
  • Scrap metal (maximum 6 ft. length)
  • Some plastics
Yard Debris
Yard debris includes, but is not limited to, vegetative matter resulting from landscaping maintenance such as grass clippings, and tree and shrub trimmings.
There are a number of options for recycling yard debris. Most local garbage service companies provide curbside yard debris collection. Composting yard debris at home is another option. There are also commercial composting facilities to which homeowners and landscapers can self-haul their yard debris. For information on those facilities call Snohomish County Solid Waste Management Division at 425.388.3425 or click here.
Solid Waste Permits
Types of activities requiring permits, permit application information and information about Solid Waste Sites of Record.
Do I Need a Permit?
The Snohomish Health District issues permits for the following types of solid waste activities in Snohomish County:
Solid Waste - Disposal Sites
  • Inert waste landfill
  • Limited purpose landfil
  • Mixed municipal solid waste landfill
Solid Waste - Handling Facilities
  • Baling and compaction systems
  • Drop boxes
  • Materials recovery
  • Moderate risk waste
  • Transfer stations
Solid Waste - Other Facilities
  • Composting
  • Energy recovery and incinerators
  • Land application
  • Piles used for storage and treatment
  • Surface impoundments and tanks
Permit Application Information
Contact the Solid Waste & Toxics Program at 425.339.5250 for any questions concerning the permit application process.
Any facility required to complete a solid waste permit application must also submit the following:
Each facility will also submit one or more of the following activity-specific applications:
Complete the appropriate permit application forms and send them to:
Environmental Health Division - Solid Waste & Toxics Section
3020 Rucker Avenue, Suite 104
Everett, WA 98201-3900
OR email the completed forms to:
Solid Waste Sites of Record
The Program inspects or monitors a number of solid waste disposal or utilization sites in Snohomish County.
Sites of Record (2.1.11)
A list of known solid waste sites in Snohomish County; list updated as changes occur.
Contact Info
Phone: 425.339.5250
Office Hours: Monday - Friday 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, closed from 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Last Reviewed and updated 9/26/2011