Waste Ban Items

Current Waste Disposal Ban

On November 1, 2022 the Baker-Polito Administration today announced that new waste ban regulations that promote recycling and re-use, reduce trash disposal, and foster recycling business growth take effect starting today, November 1, 2022. The new regulations will ban the disposal of mattresses and textiles in the trash, as well as decrease food waste from businesses and institutions. Massachusetts currently has a food waste ban on businesses disposing one ton or more per week, and these regulations lower that threshold to a half-ton per week. 

Clothing: Shirts, pants, jackets, suits, hats, belts, ties, gloves, scarves, socks (even single ones) undergarments, handbags, backpacks in any style, age or condition. Footwear: Shoes, sandals, sneakers, cleats, boots, flip-flops, and slippers Household textiles (even stained and torn items): Curtains, drapes, sheets, blankets, comforters, towels, table linens, throw rugs, pillows, stuffed dolls and animals

General Waste Ban Information

In 1990, the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) introduced its first bans on landfilling and combustion of easy-to-recycle and toxic materials. Additional "waste bans" have been phased in over time.

The following materials and items are prohibited from disposal and/or transfer for disposal in Massachusetts:

  • Asphalt pavement, brick, and concrete
  • Cathode ray tubes (TVs and computer monitors)
  • Clean gypsum wallboard
  • Ferrous and non-ferrous metals
  • Glass and metal containers
  • Lead acid batteries
  • Leaves and yard waste
  • Recyclable paper, cardboard, and paperboard
  • Single resin narrow-necked plastics
  • Treated and untreated wood and wood waste (banned from landfills only)
  • White goods (large appliances)
  • Whole tires (banned from landfills only; shredded tires acceptable)

Since the first waste bans were introduced, Massachusetts municipalities and businesses - often supported by MassDEP grants and technical assistance - have developed new infrastructure to collect banned items and other discarded materials, and to divert them from disposal to reuse and recycling.