BOSTON (WWLP) – Residents in Massachusetts can no longer throw away textiles and mattresses in waste disposal beginning Tuesday.
On November 1st, Massachusetts is prohibiting items such as clothing, footwear, bedding, towels, curtains, fabric, and similar products from being thrown in the trash at landfills and incinerators to help put them into the hands of those in need and recycle their fibers into other products.
According to Mass.gov, every year Massachusetts residents and businesses throw away about 230,000 tons of usable textiles, 95 percent of this material can be reused as clothing, converted to wiping cloths, or recycled into new fiber-based products.
Materials banned from disposal in Massachusetts
(effective November 1, 2022)
Textiles: Clothing, footwear, bedding, towels, curtains, fabric, and similar products,
except for textiles that are contaminated with mold, bodily fluids, insects, oil, or
Mattresses: Resilient material or combination of materials that is enclosed by ticking,
used alone or in combination with other products, that is intended for sleeping upon,
except for mattresses that are contaminated with mold, bodily fluids, insects, oil, or
hazardous substances. “Mattress” does not include any mattress pad, mattress
topper, sleeping bag, pillow, car bed, carriage, basket, dressing table, stroller, playpen,
infant carrier, lounge pad, crib bumper, liquid or gaseous filled ticking, including any
water bed and any air mattress that does not contain upholstery material between the
ticking and the mattress core, and mattresses in futons and sofa beds. Mattresses
includes box springs.
Consumer Textile Donation & Recycling
Do you have clothing, shoes, or other textiles that you no longer wear or use, but still have plenty of life left in them? Don’t throw them away!
Donate them to an organization that will find new owners or uses for these items. Search the MassDEP-supported Beyond the Bin Recycling Directory by type of material and your location. It will display a list of nearby locations where you can drop off unwanted clothing, shoes, and other textiles for donation to organizations that will resell, reuse, recycle, or repurpose them.
Bring or mail unwanted clothing and shoes to manufacturers or retailers. Many companies and stores accept these items for recycling – in most cases, even items and brands they don’t make or sell.