Solid Waste in the Midwest
The Solid Waste Program in EPA Region 7 promotes waste prevention, recycling and safe, effective management and disposal of solid waste, including household and commercial garbage and nonhazardous industrial wastes. We work closely with our partners including state agencies, Indian tribes, local governments, universities and citizen groups to solve municipal solid waste generation and management problems in the states of Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Nebraska.
This work is authorized by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) at Subtitle D.
Solid Waste in Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska
States oversee most of the solid waste disposal programs and compliance is assured through state-issued permits. State and local governments are the primary planning, permitting, regulating, implementing, and enforcement agencies for management and disposal of household and industrial or commercial nonhazardous solid wastes.
Resources for Assistance
For information or assistance with solid waste activities in your state, please visit the following websites:
- Iowa Department of Natural Resources Exit
- Kansas Department of Health and Environment Exit
- Missouri Department of Natural Resources Exit
- Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality Exit
Reporting Illegal Dumping
States also have programs to follow up on reports of illegal dumping. Please contact the appropriate state agencies to report illegal dumping. Contact and other information can be located via the websites above.
Sustainable Materials Management
EPA's Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) Program is a key component of Region 7's Solid Waste Program. Sustainable materials management refers to the use and reuse of materials in the most productive and sustainable way across their entire life cycle. Sustainable materials management conserves resources, reduces waste, slows climate change, and minimizes the environmental impacts of the materials we use.
EPA's SMM efforts include:
- Food Recovery Challenge - Under the Food Recovery Challenge, grocers, colleges and stadiums are committing to reduce the environmental impact of wasted food in landfills through smart purchasing and surplus food diversion.
- Electronics Challenge - Through the Electronics Challenge, equipment manufacturers and retailers are promoting responsible recycling of used electronics.
- Federal Green Challenge - The Federal Green Challenge encourages EPA and other federal agencies throughout the country to lead by example in reducing the federal government's environmental impact.
EPA also promotes waste reduction through the WasteWise Program. WasteWise is a free, voluntary program that assists and recognizes businesses, governments and organizations that reduce or eliminate costly municipal solid waste and select industrial wastes, benefiting both the environment and their bottom line. Businesses, local governments, and nonprofit organizations of all sizes and from all industry sectors can join WasteWise.
Learn more about EPA's national WasteWise program.
EPA Region 7 Contact
To contact the EPA Region 7 Solid Waste Program, please email or call Jim Callier at firstname.lastname@example.org or 913-551-7646.
Solid & Hazardous Waste Support for First Nations in Region 7
The Tribal Solid Waste Team provides solid and hazardous waste support for the First Nations. The Tribal Solid Waste Team is committed to developing strategic and sustainable paths for the First Nations. The Team is responsible for developing Tribal capacity so that the Tribes themselves can implement waste management programs, which help assure clean water, clean air and clean land. First Nations, both in Region 7 and nationally, have identified solid waste matters as among the highest priorities for environmental management. Furthermore, Region 7 has identified three key regional priorities which the team believes are fully coincident with solid waste work in Indian Country.
These priorities are:
- Sensitive Populations
- Critical Ecosystems
The Tribes served by Region 7 can receive solid waste funding from the following EPA sources:
- Grants from funds budgeted by EPA's American Indian Environmental Office through the General Assistance Program grants
- Grants from funds budgeted by EPA's Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assistance
- Grants from funds budgeted by the EPA's Open Dump Cleanup Task force
- Grants from funds budgeted by the EPA's Office of Solid Waste & Emergency Response Innovations Initiative
- Grants from funds budgeted by the EPA's Tribal Hazardous Waste Grant account
- Grants from funds budgeted by the EPA's environmental justice program
Many tribes have found creative ways to reduce and better manage municipal solid waste through a mix of practices that includes source reduction, recycling (including composting), and disposal. The resources on the national Environmental Protection in Indian Country, page contains a wealth of information on municipal solid waste management including:
- Waste Reduction Tips for Hotels and Casinos in Indian Country
- Training and Technical Assistance Directory for Tribal Solid Waste Managers
- Grant Resources for Solid Waste Activities in Indian Country
- Tribal Environmental and Natural Resource Assistance Handbook
- Directory of Tribal Environmental Programs
- Recycling Guide for Native American Nations
- Waste Management on Indian Reservations: An Introduction for Tribal Decision-Makers
Additional resources include sections on
- Hazardous waste
- Construction and demolition waste
- Industrial solid waste
- Mining waste
- Military munitions waste
EPA Region 7 Contact
For further information, contact Gayle Hubert of the Tribal Solid Waste Team at 913-551-7439 or toll-free at 1-800-223-0425 (within Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska).
Click here to see the list of the federally-recognized Indian Tribal Governments in Region 7.