July 16, 2013

KDHE Office of Communications, 785-296-0461

Bureau of Waste Management Assessing Adequacy of Solid Waste Reduction

Kansas House Bill 2249 requires KDHE to report findings to 2014 Legislature

TOPEKA, Kan.— Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s Bureau of Waste Management is using an online survey as one method of acquiring information from stakeholders about solid waste generation, disposal and recycling services. All Kansans are invited to participate starting now through August 16. The study is being conducted in accordance with a new Kansas statute.

The Kansas Legislature passed House Bill 2249 late in the 2013 session requiring KDHE to perform a study that assesses the adequacy of solid waste reduction practices in Kansas and to report those findings to the Legislature in January 2014.

“While KDHE will collect information from this survey and through meetings with interested stakeholders, we will also be assembling available data to summarize trends in recycling, composting and waste disposal,” said Bill Bider, director of KDHE’s Bureau of Waste Management. “The report we deliver to the Legislature in January 2014 will help policymakers decide if existing trends are adequate or if new laws or regulations are warranted to improve practices.”

Solid waste, defined by Kansas law, is refuse, garbage, waste tires and other discarded materials, including those solid, semisolid, sludges, liquid and contained gaseous waste materials resulting from industrial, commercial, agricultural and domestic activities. Existing Kansas law establishes several broad solid waste management policies including actions “to encourage the wise use of resources through development of strategies that reduce, reuse, and recycle materials.”

Completion of this survey will help the bureau understand public opinion regarding waste management in general, waste reduction services, and related state policies. A link to this survey can be found on the KDHE website,, under the Featured Items sidebar.

For the past 20 years, KDHE has encouraged and assisted local governments and private businesses in the start-up and operation of waste reduction programs. Significant progress has been made over this period to increase waste diversion from landfills; nearly one-third of all municipal solid waste, or more than 1 million tons, was recycled or beneficially used in 2011. These efforts conserve valuable natural resources and limited landfill space.