Hazardous Waste Disposal

In 2018, 40,430 pounds of household hazardous waste was collected from San Juan, Orcas, and Lopez Islands.  Another 6,320 pounds of waste was collected from certified-exempt small quantity generators (CESQG) on San Juan Island.  A total of 323 households and 18 businesses participated in the collection events in June 2018.  Oil-based paints and pesticides were the most common household hazardous wastes collected in 2018.

The proposed 2019 Round-Up dates and locations are:

  • San Juan Island - for business only (Business Registration Form)
    • DateJune 14
    • Time: 1- 3 pm
    • Location: San Juan Transfer Station
    • Address: 212 Sutton Road
  • San Juan Island
    • Date: June 15
    • Time: 10 am - 2 pm
    • Location: San Juan Transfer Station 
    • Address: 212 Sutton Road
  • Orcas Island
    • Date:  June 23
    • Time: 10 am - 2 pm
    • Location: Orcas Recycling Services
    • Address: 3398 Orcas Road
  • Lopez Island
    • Date: June 22
    • Time: 11 am - 2 pm
    • Location: Lopez Solid Waste Disposal District
    • Address: 2419 Fisherman Bay Road
Many household items may be harmful to you, your family, animals, and the environment.


What is Household Hazardous Waste


Household hazardous wastes (HHW) can come in the form of liquids, solids, or contained gases. They are often ordinary commercial products, like cleaning fluids or pesticides. They should not be thrown in the trash or poured down the drain or on the ground. Island drinking water is particularly susceptible to contamination by discarded waste.

San Juan County and the Washington Department of Ecology conduct annual Hazardous Waste Round-Ups to remove these toxic materials from our islands and maintain a healthy environment. The roundup events, individual households and businesses deliver their collected hazardous materials, where they are received and securely packaged by trained professionals, then barged to the mainland and taken to specialized disposal facilities. Collections of hazardous materials are prohibited on Washington State ferries and at terminals.

Accepted Items


  • Oil-based paints/stains/wood preservatives
  • Gasoline, kerosene, diesel, alcohols
  • Auto/boat repair products
  • Chemical cleaning supplies/solvents/thinners
  • Aerosols/adhesives
  • Used motor oil and antifreeze
  • Pesticides/herbicides
  • Lead batteries

Households


There is no charge for households participating with up to 25 gallons (or the equivalent) of household hazardous waste.

Businesses


Local businesses that generate only small quantities of hazardous waste (SQG's) participate in the round-up events at a a much lower cost than if they were to individually manage their own hazardous or moderate risk wastes. SQG businesses before the round-up event. A form is placed in the What's New box at the top of this page.

Call the County Public Works office at 360-370-0534 if you have any questions.

Missed the Annual Event?

For a fee, San Juan County residents can take their household hazardous waste to Stericycle Environmental's Bellingham location at 3505 Airport Drive (near the Bellingham Airport).  For more information on hours of operation and fees, call 360-380-4640.  Remember, there are limits on the volume of flammable liquids allowed on the State Ferries.

Things to Remember


  • Fluorescent tubes and bulbs are now accepted for free at several locations in the County including (LightRecycle Program):
    • Orcas Power and Light Cooperative, 183 Mt. Baker Road, Eastsound
    • The Exchange/Orcas Recycling Services 3398 Orcas Road. Eastsound
    • Ace Hardware of Friday Harbor, 340 Argyle Avenue, Friday Harbor
    • Consignment Treasures Recycling , 6739 Roche Harbor Road, Friday Harbor
    • Orcas Power and Light Cooperative, 1034 Guard St., Friday Harbor
    • Lopez Solid Waste, 2449 Fisherman Bay Road, Lopez Island
 Note: Fluorescent tubes and bulbs are no longer accepted at the County hazardous waste  collection events.

  • Vehicle Batteries are best recycled are accepted at no cost at Orcas Recycling Services and and a charge of $5 at Lautenbach on San Juan Island.
  • Household batteries can also be recycled and are accepted for $2 per pound at Orcas Recycling Services and for free at Ace hardware on San Juan Island.
  • Latex paint is not hazardous. Ace Hardware (http://www.acehardware.com/home/index.jsp) in Friday Harbor and Orcas Recycling Services (http://www.exchangeorcas.org/) on Orcas Island will accept your water-based paint for a charge.  To dispose of it as regular solid waste, either evaporate or thicken it with a material such as sawdust, and put the can in with the garbage.
All business hazardous waste needs a form. Please fill out your contact information and an estimated inventory and return the form a week before the event.

Unaccepted Items


Medical Waste


Medical wastes are not accepted in the HHW or SQG waste collection. Unwanted medications (pharmaceuticals and over-the-counter drugs). Call the Sheriff’s Office business line 360-378-4151 for advice on safe disposal. While San Juan County does not endorse any service for medical waste disposal, these websites may be helpful in finding a way to dispose of used sharps:

Explosives


For proper disposal of unwanted ammunition, flares, or explosives, call the Sheriff’s office business line 360-378-4151.

Vehicle Waste


These common wastes from motor vehicles can be recycled or even reused. Take them to your island's disposal site during regular hours to discard them in the marked containers.
  • Used Antifreeze
  • Motor Oil
  • Lead-Acid batteries