Welcome to the Georgia Department of Community Affairs

Solid Waste Management and Recycling Assistance

Solid Waste Planning

Planning requirements for local governments changed significantly in 2011. Local government solid waste management plans, whether local, multi-jurisdictional or regional, must at a minimum:

  • provide for 10 years of collection capability and disposal capacity from the date of completion of the plan
  • enumerate the solid waste handling facilities as to size and type
  • identify those sites that are not suitable for solid waste handling facilities based on environmental and land use factors.

For more information on these changes, see:

Solid Waste Management Planning Requirements

Adopted Local Government Solid Waste Plans

Georgia State Plan (PDF)


The Recycling industry is big business in Georgia, yet every year, Georgians collectively pay more than $100 million to bury raw materials worth nearly $300 million to manufacturers based right here in our state. Those manufacturing feedstocks are also known as recyclable material, and about 40 percent of what Georgians set out as ‘garbage’ could have been recycled. DCA works with our partner organizations to help local governments generate less waste, divert what they can for reuse, and efficiently dispose of the rest.
OPEM has many resources to assist local governments implement or expand their recycling programs.

To find a recycling location near you use the following links:

Source-Separated Organics Recycling Toolkit

DCA is pleased to present the Source-Separated Organics Recycling Toolkit (S2ORT), funded by EPA Region 4. Local governments and other service providers seeking to meet residential waste diversion goals or offer additional collection services for their customers can use this resource to determine the feasibility, associated costs and optimal strategy for collecting organic material. Food residuals and yard trimmings can account for a third of the ‘waste’ material generated from households.

Streetside bins

Adding organics diversion to a comprehensive curbside recycling collection program can divert up to 70% (by weight) of the residential scrap materials stream from landfills to beneficial re-use. To get started, read the Guide, below.

SSORT Calculator Curbside (Excel)
SSORT Calculator Drop-off (Excel)

Waste and Recycling Collection RFP Toolkit

Model RFP Solid Waste Services (PDF)
RFP Definitions (PDF)
Variable Components of RFP (PDF)
Sample Contract from RFP Drop-off centers (PDF)
Recycling Bin Vendors (PDF)
Conducting a Recycling Assessment (PDF)
Marketing Your Recycling Program (PDF)
Single-Stream Recycling Best Practices (PDF)
Single-Stream Recycling Implementation (PDF)

Multi-Family Recycling Toolkit

toolkit cover

Multi-Family Recycling Toolkit Overview (PDF)

Recycling at Events Toolkit

Recycle Your Next Event (PDF)
Pay as You Throw (PDF)
Georgia Recycling Markets Directory
Georgia Statewide Waste Composition Computer Model
Scrap Metal Compliance Guide (PDF)

Information and Resources

School Recycling Guide (PDF)
Office Recycling Guide (PDF)
Metro Atlanta Recycling Collection Companies (PDF)
Disposing of Paint, Gasoline and Chemicals at Home (PDF)
Compact Fluorescent Lamps Use and Disposal (PDF)
Computer Recyling


Solid Waste Annual Reports 2001-2011
Waste Characterization Study (PDF)
Non-MSW Characterization Study (PDF)
Film Plastics Study (PDF)
Georgia EPD Solid Waste Management Rules (PDF)


Composting (Word)
Composting (PDF)
Scrap Tire (PDF)
Tire Mileage (PDF)
Litter Law Explainer (PDF)
Unsecured Loads - brochure (PDF)
Unsecured Loads - poster (PDF)
GRC Fact Card (PDF)

Information and Resources

Georgia Recycling Coalition
Keep Georgia Beautiful Foundation
Southeast Recycling Development Council (SERDC)
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Georgia Department of Natural Resources Sustainability Division
Environmental Protection Division
Recycle for Georgia

Contact Information

For more information on planning or environmental management, e-mail the Office of Planning and Environmental Management or call 404-679-5279.

Georgia Department of Community Affairs
60 Executive Park South, N.E.
Atlanta, Georgia 30329-2231