Recycling Market Development

​During the 2021 legislative session, the Maryland General Assembly passed House Bill 164 or the Department of the Environment - Office of Recycling - Recycling Market law.

​The law Requires the Office of Recycling in the Department of the Environment to promote the development of markets for recycled materials and recycled products in the State. It also requires the Office to evaluate the availability of recycling markets and identify businesses in the State that use recycled materials.


Be a part of our stakeholder groups.  Sign up​ for notifications on how to participate!  

HB 164 Fact Sheet 

Timeline for Implementation of 2021 House Bill 1​64 Provisions 


In 2022, MDE completed a variety of stakeholder meeting which addressed the provisions of the law and focused on promoting the development of markets for recycled materials and recycled products within the state.

A survey conducted to county recycling coordinators asked them to consider: materials have successful markets, what materials are difficult to find markets for, what types of support is desired from the state.

Materials that have successful markets included items such as:
  • ​Metal, Mixed Metal
  • Mixed paper and OCC
  • Aluminum Cans
  • Plastics (PET, HDPE): Colored & Natural

Materials difficult to find markets for included items such as:
  • ​Compressed gas cylinders
  • Glass
  • Mattresses
  • Food Residuals (pre- and post-consumer organics)
  • Plastics not including PET & HDPE
  • Asphalt Shingles
  • Boat Shrink Wrap
  • Tires
  • Single Use, Lithium-Ion Batteries
  • Textiles

Type of support desired from the state included:
  • ​Education and Outreach
  • Funding for equipment, land and personnel
  • Buyers for difficult markets
  • Transportation
Stakeholder Workshops



The primary goal of the UAIP pilot project is to support the development of urban agriculture and innovative production. The two types of UAIP grants being made available for application under this NFO are Planning Projects and Implementation Projects. Planning Projects are projects that will initiate, develop, or support the efforts of farmers, gardeners, citizens, government officials, schools, members of tribal communities, and other stakeholders in areas where access to fresh foods are limited or unavailable. Implementation Projects are for accelerating existing and emerging models of urban and/or innovative agricultural practices that serve multiple farmers or gardeners. Innovation may include new and emerging, as well as traditional or indigenous, agricultural practices.

The EJCPS Program will provide an estimated $30 million in funding directly to community-based nonprofit organizations (and partnerships of these organizations), with $5 million reserved for small community-based nonprofit organizations with five or fewer full-time employees. In total, the Agency anticipates funding approximately 50 awards of $500,000 and 30 awards of $150,000.
EPA’s EJCPS Cooperative Agreement Program provides financial assistance to eligible organizations working on or planning to work on projects to address local environmental and/or public health issues in their communities. The program assists recipients in building collaborative partnerships with other stakeholders (e.g., local businesses and industry, local government, medical service providers, academia) to develop solutions that will significantly address environmental and/or public health issues at the local level.
Interested applicants must submit proposal packages on or before April 14, 2023, to be considered for the available funding. Applicants should plan for projects to begin on October 1, 2023.
The EJG2G Program (formerly known as the State Environmental Justice Cooperative Agreement program) will provide an estimated $70 million in funding. Of this, $20 million will be for State governments to use in conjunction with Community-Based Organization (CBO) partners, $20 million will be for local government with CBO partners, $20 milli​on will be for Federally Recognized Tribal Nations with CBO partners, and $10 million will be for U.S. territories and remote tribes with limited access to CBO partners. In total the Agency anticipates funding approximately 70 projects of up to $1 million each for a 3-year project. 
The EJG2G Program works to support and/or create model state activities that lead to measurable environmental or public health results in communities disproportionately burdened by environmental harms and risks. These models should leverage or utilize existing resources or assets of state agencies to develop key tools and processes that integrate environmental justice considerations into state governments and government programs.
CBOs must partner with an eligible entity to apply. Interested applicants must submit proposal packages on or before April 14, 2023, to be considered for the available funding. Applicants should plan for projects to begin on October 1, 2023.
The EJ TCGM program will fund up to 11 entities to serve as Grantmakers to community-based projects that reduce pollution. Selected Grantmakers will design competitive application and submission processes, award environmental justice subgrants, implement a tracking and reporting system, provide resources and support to communities.
The entities eligible to apply under this Request for Applications (RFA) and serve as an Environmental Justice Thriving Communities Grantmaker fall into four categories. They include: 
  • A community-based nonprofit organization; 
  • A partnership of community-based nonprofit organizations; 
  • A partnership between a Tribal Nation and a community-based nonprofit organization; or,  
  • A partnership between an institution of higher education and a community-based nonprofit organization. 
Application packages must be submitted on or before May 31, 2023
This Request for Information seeks public input on new and innovative strategies and approaches for competition design, community engagement, equitable distribution of financial resources, grantee eligibility for funding, capacity-building and outreach, and technical assistance. EPA’s Office of Environmental Justice and External Civil Rights is seeking public input on multiple aspects of the ECJ Program including, but not limited to:
  • ECJ Program Design​​
  • Types of Projects to Fund
  • Reducing Application Barriers
  • Reporting and Oversight
  • Technical Assistance
The deadline to provide input is March 17, 2023. EPA is planning to issue a Notice of Funding Opportunity for approximately $2 billion of ECJ Program grants in the summer of 2023 after public input from this Request for Information has been considered.

Solutions for Recycling Markets

Contamination in the recycling stream has prompted major recycling trade restrictions, turning markets upside down and leading to growing piles of recycl​ables with nowhere to go but the landfill. To solve this problem, Maryland must find new end markets and reduce contamination in its recycling stream.​

Research and Innovation

MDE is tasked with evaluating the local, national, and international markets for recycled materials and recycled products. We are working with the ​Northeast Maryland Waste Authority to update the website with the latest known information for recyclers in our region. If your business would like to be added, please let us know.

Want to learn more about recycling markets, programs and materials? Check out these links​:

Opportunities for Businesses in the State to Increase their use of Recycled Materials

Did you know that the Maryland Department of General Services, Green Purchasing Program has a list of environmentally preferable specifications? This list identifies products or services and specific materials that meet Maryland Green Purchasing Committee Approved Specifications. Why does this matter? When developing contracts and standards, procurement can identify products that improve our environment – they may be compostable, sustainable, and/or made with recycled content.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has developed a Comprehensive Procurement Guideline (CPG) Program. This is part of the EPA's Sustainable Materials Management initiative that promotes a system approach to reducing materials use, associated greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change, and other environmental impacts over the materials' entire life cycle.

The Maryland Department​​ of Public Safety & Correctional Services offers programs for partnerships and the production goods and/or services using inmate labor. Learn more about Maryland Correctional Enterprises and the Prison Industry Enhancement Program.

Marketing and Sustainability
Boost your eco-credentials by becoming a part of the Maryland Green Registry.  This voluntary program assists your business with free of charge information, technical assistance, and webinars to grow your greening efforts.

County Reuse Resources

Business Assistance

Recycling Permitting Assistance

Information on permits issued by the Land and Materials, Air and Radiation, and Water and Science Administrations is available on the Environmental Permits and Approvals web page. Depending on the activities conducted, a permit from one or more of these administrations may be required for a facility that conducts recycling. If you need assistance in determining which permits apply to a particular recycling-related facility, emailing David Mrgich or Ed Dexter.  They may also be reached by phone at 410-537-3314 and 410-537-3315, respectively.

Composting facility permit information is available on the Organics Diversion and Composting web page or by emailing Tariq Masood or phone at 410‑537‑3314.

Natural wood waste recycling facility permit information is available on the Solid Waste Management in Maryland web page or by emailing Kaveh Hosseinzadeh​ or phone at 410-537-3315.

Business Startup Assistance

If you need assistance in starting a recycling business, please revie
w the resources available on the Maryland Department of Commerce's Business Resources web page.

Maryland Business Express has information for small business owners to start, manage and grow their businesses.

A list on incentives relevant to organic materials management is available on Pages 24-25 and Appendix G (pages 269-292) in the Yard Waste, Food Residuals, and Other Organic Materials Diversion and Infrastructure Study Group Final Report​.​


HB 164 Fact Sheet 

Timeline for Implementation of 2021 House Bill 164 Provisions​  

Contact Information​

For additional information or questions email Shannon McDonald or Tim Kerr or phone at 410-537-3314

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