The Windham Solid Waste Management District (WSWMD) was formed in 1988. At that time, only eight towns were members of the District. These towns cooperatively managed a 30 acre landfill.
In 1995, federally mandated landfill operation regulations forced WSWMD to seek alternative landfill sites or an alternative to landfill disposal. After much debate, WSWMD opted to get out of the landfill business and start recycling.
In 2017, the Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) was closed for most recycling processes, except for cardboard baling. Our focus turned to organics, and we’ve created the second largest compost production site in the state of Vermont, to ready our facility for food scrap diversion in July of 2020.
“The Windham Solid Waste Management District’s (WSWMD) mission is to provide solid waste education, recycling management, and disposal services for its member’s towns and other entities as the need arises.” This means the WSWMD is responsible for providing public education programs on all aspects of solid waste and hazardous waste management to member communities, and collection and diversion services for all wastes banned from Vermont landfills. In 1995, the WSWMD adopted the following goal: “each item of waste generated within the District (should) be directed to the highest level of the solid waste management hierarchy as is possible.”
The WSWMD’s headquarters are based on Old Ferry Road in Brattleboro, Vermont where it maintains the following:
- A 30 acre closed landfill that was among the first in the nation to use it’s methane gas to generate electricity
- A compost facility for processing food scraps, a drop-off facility for compostable materials and yard waste
- A transfer station that accepts non-recyclable solid waste (often called Municipal Solid Waste, or MSW), and construction and demolition (C&D) debris
- A drop-off facility (recycling drop-off center) for glass, cardboard, commingled containers (paper, plastic)
- A drop-off facility for special recycling programs: Waste oil, tires, batteries, textiles, appliances (white goods), scrap metal, books, computers and other electronic waste
- A Swap Shop for reusable items
- District offices that house the district administrative staff