Photo courtesy of the City of Laurel

Updated on June 7, 2023, for additional editing.

A new City ordinance will make it mandatory for Laurel residents to separate their organic waste from trash starting in 2025.

Organic waste includes food scraps, food waste, food-soiled paper, and compostable plastic. Leaves, grass clippings, landscape debris and other green waste must be separated out.

Laurel is the first municipality in the state of Maryland to introduce mandatory composting legislation, which was approved at the May 22, 2023 Mayor and City Council meeting. The ordinance takes effect on July 1, 2025.

“This type of composting program will reduce the amount of money the City pays to process our waste, said Mayor Craig Moe in a release. “[W]e will all work together to make sure the community is ready when the program begins in 2025.”

The City will help prepare residents through how-to videos, face-to-face community meetings (by request), composting and recycling tips pubished on the City of Laurel Green Living resources page, and by providing a new cart that will allow residents in condo communities to compost.

For questions about the benefits of composting, how to sign up, education and outreach, or to request a presentation for your HOA, residents may contact Michele Blair, the City of Laurel Environmental Programs Manager, at [email protected] or by calling 301-725-5300.