Portland is a Zero Waster's dream. From food co-ops to dedicated low waste shops, from compost pick-up services to tool libraries, it offers a multitude of opportunities to reduce your waste and your impact on the planet.
The Zero Waste PDX Resource Map, also available in full page.
Above is a map of businesses, organizations and markets around Portland that support our zero waste lifestyle.
I've created various layers so that the map is not overcrowded.
You can show them by clicking on the arrow on the top left of the map and selecting the ones you're interested to see.
Then click on each of the locations to have more information about which products they sell in bulk, which items they accept for donation or what can be recycled there.
And you will find below Conscious by Chloé's Ultimate Zero Waste Guide to Portland, Oregon!
1. Join the Zero Waste Community!
- Check out Zero Waste PDX!
- Sign up for the Zero Waste PDX Mailing List
- Join the Zero Waste PDX Community on Facebook
2. Zero Waste Essentials made or provided locally
- [Way of Being](Hippo Hardware) (online) - Low Waste Shop
- Marleys Monsters (online and at various Portland stores) - Zero Waste Essentials from Eugene
- Clean Slate Laundry and Home (online and at Made Here PDX) - from Oregon City
- Well Earth Goods (online) - Zero Waste Essentials from Medford
- Heather's Treasures (online)
- Porter Lee's (online) - A one stop shop for all your reusable needs
- Saged Home (online Etsy) - Zero Waste Essentials
- Second Hand Settings (online Etsy) - Reclaimed Cloth Napkins
- straight up eco (online) - Shampoo bars
- Sustainable Silverware - Reusable silverware set with link (student project - 100% of profits donated to Surfrider Portland)
- BBTEA JARS - Zero Waste Bubble Tea Essentials
Image credit: Replenish Refill Shop
3. Buy in Bulk
Is this your first bulk shopping trip? Check out this Shopping in Bulk 101 Guide. And keep your eyes peeled for refillable beer bottles.
Our amazing friend Shannon Tivona created this comprehensive Portland Bulk Inventory app, so if you're looking for an item in particular, check it out.
I dedicated a whole article to Portland's Zero Waste Grocery and Bulk Food Stores.
- Null Refillery - NE Portland Refill Store
- Replenish Shop - SE Portland (Sellwood) Refill Store
- Mama & Hapa's - NE & SE Portland Refill Store
- Simple Sundries - SE Portland Refill Store
- Utility Zero Waste - Refill pop-ups
- Kindred Homestead Supplies - Low Waste Products (Vancouver, WA)
I dedicated a whole article to Portland's Zero Waste Essentials and Refill Stores.
- The Realm Refillery (NE) - Package Free Grocery
- Co-ops: People's (SE), Alberta (NE), Food Front (NW)
- Bob's Red Mill
- Sheridan Fruit Company
- New Seasons
- Whole Foods
- Fred Meyer
Fruit and Vegetables
- OTA Tofu - Tofu in bulk, cash only
- Bui Natural Tofu - Tofu in bulk
- Three Sisters Nixtamal - Tortillas in bulk, at production center
- The Spice & Tea Exchange of Portland - Spices, teas, flavored sugars
- Fernweh - Adventure meals
- Amylk - Plant-based mylks in glass bottles
4. Shop Second Hand/Donate
The most sustainable way to shop, is to not shop, but if you really need something, second-hand is an earth-friendly option (according to the amazing Buyerarchy of Needs).
Our friends at Buy Nothing - Creative Reuse - Portland created this inventory of donation centers. Check it out!
And don't forget to use Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace or your local Buy Nothing Group to see whether someone else is looking for what you want to let go of.
- SCRAP - Creative reuse
- Free Geek - Sustainable technology reuse
- Shwop - Membership-based clothing swap boutique
- Community Warehouse - Furniture
- Habitat for Humanity ReStore
- Reclaim it
- Village Merchants
- Buffalo Exchange - Clothing
5. Repair / Renovate
Make it last! I recently discovered my passion for darning socks, but sometimes, you need to let a professional do the work.
- Portland Repair Finder
- Repair PDX - Repair Cafés
- JDs Shoe Repair
- Footwise - Birkenstock Repair Shop
- Indigo Proof - Denim repair
- Hidden Opulence - Mending & Repair
- Fink’s Luggage & Repair Co. - Suitcases, handbags and business cases repair
- Rebuilding Center - Home Improvement
- Building Material Resources - Reclaimed and vintage building materials
- Department of Work - Cast Iron Renewal
6. Recycling / Composting
Portland residents have access to curbside recycling (and some to composting too), but many other items can be diverted from the landfill through the following organizations. When in doubt, throw it out, but also call the amazing experts at the Metro hotline
Check out my article about recycling in Portland, OR.
- Share Waste - Composting (free)
- Agilyx - Plastic #6s: plastic trays, clamshells, styrofoam (free)
- James' Neighborhood recycling
- gogo eco - Polystyrene foam collection recycling
- Far West
- MetroPaint - Paint
- Bottle Drop - Bottles and cans (get money back)
- Nike Factory Store - Athletic Shoes, free
- New Seasons - plastic film, cork, aluminum cans and Paktech plastic handles
- Target - Glass Bottles, Plastic Bottles, Aluminium Cans, MP3s, Cellphones, Ink Cartridges, Plastic Bags (free)
- Ikea - Metal, Glass, CFL Bulbs, LED Bulbs, , Incandescent & Halogen Bulbs, 9V Batteries, AAA, AA, C, D Batteries (free) also mattresses and furniture ($25)
- H&M - Textiles (free)
- Madewell - Denim (free)
- Terracycle - Public drop-offs for various products (Tom's of Maine, L'Occitane en Provence , etc.)
- Ridwell - Hard-to-recycle items collection
7. Sharing Economy
Sharing is caring. And do you really need to buy your own tablesaw? Check out these free sharing resources and never buy another item you'll only use once.
- Little Free Libraries
- Children's Book Bank
- Tool Libraries: North, NorthEast, SouthEast, Lents, Vancouver WA
- Kitchen Shares: SouthEast
- Libraries of things: Cedar Mill, Sherwood
- The No Paper or Plastic Party
- PDX Food Swap
- Portland Game Library (subscription-based) - Home delivery/pick-up
8. Skill Learning
Learning how to do or make something is really empowering and those skills can then be passed along to friends or future generations!
- Master Recycler - Recycling
- Reduce Your Waste Project - Waste Reduction
- Eco School Network - Parents and students shaping sustainable schools
- Portland Cookshop - Cooking
- Wildcraft - Wild crafts
- Assembly - Crafts
- Portland Apparel Lab - Sewing
- Klumhouse - Sewing
- Wild Food Adventures - Foraging
- City Wild - Natural world education for kids
- Trackers Earth - Camp and outdoors
- Mazamas - Outdoors
- Hackerspace - Tech
9. Chemical-Free Self Care
Self care is so important, but you want to make sure that it is as good for you as it is for the people who provide it and... the planet.
- Blendily - Skin care products
- ECHO Natural Beauty - Shop & facials
- Camamu - Solid soaps and shampoos
- Loyly - Sauna
- Nails Nails Nails - Nail and foot care
- Scapegoat - Vegan tattoo parlor
- Golden Hour - Acupuncture
10. Green Services
- Spin Laundry - Green Laundry Service
- Ecomaids - Green Cleaning
- Green Clean PDX - Green Cleaning
- The Shiners - Green Cleaning
- Tidee Didee - Cloth Diaper service
- Green Pet - Pet Waste Removal and Composting
11. Vegan & Vegetarian Restaurants
Do I really need to tell you how hurtful mass animal exploitation is for the ecosystem?
Check out the map, there are so many great restaurants in town this article would be endless :)
Another great resource is Eat Plastic Free PDX (especially for take-out during the pandemic)
12. Portland Zero Waste Heroes
Because Portland wouldn't be the green hub it is without these every day eco-warriors, I wanted to give them a shout-out!
- Bold Reuse - Get your favorite food & drinks with zero packaging waste at one of their Portland locations.
- Okapi Reusables - Borrow a reusable cup at any of their Portland locations
- Nossa Familia - A coffee-shop which charges you for to-go cups, yay!
- Closed Loop Cooking - Plant-based, Waste-free cooking
- Waste Free Advocates - BYOC campaign
- Surfrider Foundation - Ditch the Straw campaign
- Bark - Mt. Hood National Forest preservation
- Solve - Environmental stewardship
- Green Streets Stewards - Adopt a bioswale
- Sunrise - A movement of young people working to stop climate change
- Ecochallenge (former Northwest Earth Institute)
Write letters to encourage companies to adopt sustainable practices, write to your representatives to support waste-reducing legislation and volunteer in the many organizations and community stores mentioned above (SCRAP, Free Geek, etc.).
- Metro's Recycling experts - Wonder what's recyclable and what's not? They have the answer
- Recycle or not - They also have a cool Instagram
- Resourceful PDX - Ideas for making simple changes in everyday choices
- Zero Waste PDX - A community of eco-conscious Portlanders whose recommendations were precious in the making of this guide
- Talking Trash with Peggy LaPoint - A Green Tips podcast diving into the world of sustainability by talking to people in business and non-profits, and folks knee-deep in the field of sustainability
I hope you'll find this guide useful. I'll try to keep it updated. Please share your comments and suggestions in the comments below.