About

WCCSWA provides recycling and waste disposal programs and technical assistance to 36 member communities in the west Cook County region

Overview

Formed in 1989, West Cook County Solid Waste Agency (WCCSWA) plans for the responsible management of solid waste in west Cook County, Illinois. The goal of the Agency and its members is to help residents and businesses in west Cook County to recycle and manage their garbage in an environmentally sound and cost-effective manner.

WCCSWA provides recycling and waste disposal programs and technical assistance to 36 member communities in the west Cook County region. The WCCSWA targets residents, local businesses, schools, and municipal governments.

 

Background

The Garbage Problem
Everywhere you look there is growing interest in what we do with our garbage. This interest is not limited to residents. Schools, hospitals, offices, factories, retailers, restaurants – businesses of all shapes and sizes are taking notice too.

There is a good reason for this attention to garbage. We generate too much of it and we’re running out of places to put it. It is estimated that each resident in west Cook County generates 6.4 lbs. of trash each day. This means that you, your family, friends, neighbors, and all the people who live in the 36 communities generate 628,768 tons of garbage each year!

The problem is not just how much garbage we generate. It is also what we do with it. Even with curbside recycling and separate collection of yard waste, most of our trash still ends up in landfills. That is a problem because old landfills are closing faster than the new ones being developed. In fact, the only landfill left in west Cook County will be closed in just a couple of years. Statewide, the number of landfills that are still open has dropped dramatically in the last several years. The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency has predicted this trend will continue.