Take Tours of the Landfill and Recycling Facility

Compactor at working face of landfill

posted 8/20/2013

On average, each person in the United States produces 135 pounds of garbage per month. The average home in the Des Moines Metro generates about 20 pounds of recyclables per month.

It can be nearly impossible for most people to visualize what this amount of waste looks like, or what it takes to manage it. That’s why we invite you to step off your curb and follow your garbage and recyclables to their next destination.

Recycling Sorting Facility

If you’re interested in learning more about our local recycling program, then this tour is for you! It offers an opportunity to see what is in store for those materials after they’re collected. The material is sorted by Waste Management Recycling's employees and high-tech equipment. Most attendees express they have a better understanding of what belongs in their Curb It! cart after the tour.


Tours are free of charge, but limited to those who register online. Attendees must be at least 14 years of age to participate.

Metro Park East Landfill

A bus tour will wind you through 1,800 acres of prairie, farmland, space dedicated to Polk County’s garbage and more. You’ll see how Metro Waste Authority manages nearly 2,000 tons of trash each day at Metro Park East Landfill while protecting the environment.

Landfill Tours

Tours are free of charge, but space on the bus is limited, so sign up soon.