Waste Diversion Rate

Desired Trend


Current Trend

Baseline (2010): 53.7%
Current (2015): 60.4%

Theme Efficient


Percent of waste diverted through source reduction, recycling, reuse, or composting

Why is it Important?

The waste diversion rate measures the amount of materials that are not landfilled. Diversion is a sustainable practice that ensures materials are used efficiently while reducing the amount of space and money that society must devote to landfills. The diversion rate includes all methods of diversion, including reducing, recycling, reusing, or composting. The data for this indicator is based on state-wide Missouri data due to limited data availability for smaller geographies and lack of current data for the state of Illinois.

How are we Doing?

The waste diversion rate in the state of Missouri increased from 53.7 percent in the baseline year 2010 to 60.4 percent in 2015. Since 2002 the state-wide diversion rate increased by 19 percentage points. In the state of Illinois, where the diversion rate is based solely on recycling and composting, the diversion rate is estimated to have increased from 19.1 percent in 2008 to 37.3 percent in 2014.1

Although the waste diversion rate in Missouri is increasing, which reduces the amount of waste going to the landfill, the amount of waste generated per capita is also increasing. In the state of Missouri, the daily per capita municipal waste generation rate increased from 6.0 pounds in 2000 to 8.4 pounds in 2015.2 The state’s municipal waste generation rate is much higher than the national rate of municipal waste generation, which was 4.7 pounds per capita per day in 2000 and 4.4 pounds per capita per day in 2014.3

Despite increases in population growth and waste generation per capita, actual landfill disposal by Missourians declined by 4.0 percent from 2002 to 2015.

Geographic Level

State of Missouri (data will be updated if it becomes available for additional areas or if more detailed data becomes available for areas in the eight county region)


1 Illinois Commodity/Waste Generation and Characterization Study Update, 30 March 2015, accessed on 18 March 2016 at http://www.illinoisrecycles.org/documents/

2The municipal waste generation rate includes waste from households, offices, and small businesses, and does not include waste from demolition, industry, or other sources.

3Advancing Sustainable Materials Management: Facts and Figures 2013, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, June 2015, accessed on 18 March 2016 at https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-09/documents/2013_advncng_smm_rpt.pdf

Data Sources

Missouri Department of Natural Resources