DEQ and its partners are working together to update and modernize Oregon’s recycling system, which was heavily disrupted in 2017 and 2018 after international markets began restricting their acceptance of many materials. Learn more about the recycling system disruptions here.

DEQ and other partners responsible for Oregon’s recycling system have been collaborating through the Recycling Steering Committee to identify what a future system should look like, and in 2020 will recommend changes to achieve that future recycling system. The committee is a collaborative of representatives from local and state governments, businesses and other organizations that play a role in Oregon recycling. The Recycling Steering Committee’s goal is to ensure the recycling system optimizes benefits for the environment, is strong and adaptable to change, and restores and maintains public trust in the system.

The Steering Committee’s work is guided by Oregon’s Materials Management 2050 Vision and Framework for Action, which seeks to reduce the environmental impacts of the materials and products we use across their full life cycle, from design to production to use to end of life. The group will use this holistic approach to focus on materials and processes that support increased environmental benefits.
The Steering Committee is guided by a charter, which describes their work and process. A project plan maps out efforts and tracks progress. 
The Recycling Steering Committee meets periodically to examine issues, identify research, make recommendations and determine next steps.

Recycling Steering Committee meetings


Helpful documents

Documents produced here and in the subcommittees are a joint effort of the Recycling Steering Committee members.



Subcommittees guide research, discuss topics in more depth and narrow options for the Steering Committee to consider. They work on collection and processing infrastructure, contamination, legal and relational frameworks and stakeholder engagement. Subcommittees are composed of up to 12 steering committee members and other interested and engaged stakeholders.

Learn more about the work of the subcommittees.  Contact the subcommittee chair(s) listed on that page if you are interested in participating in subcommittee work or attending a meeting.


For media inquiries
Communications Manager
Office: 503-229-6484
Cell: 503-951-3856
Project contact
DEQ Project Co-manager
Office: 503-229-6494