Zero Waste City Guide


Zero Waste City Guide

The best resources in Ypsilanti for reducing waste and its impact on the planet, in communities near and far.


Interactive Map

Find out what resources are near you

Getting Started

Basic waste reduction toolkit


Find a home for your food scraps

Grocery Shopping

Shop zero waste in Ypsilanti


Extend the lifetime of your belongings


Helpful links

Interactive Map

HINT:👇 Use the “Filter by” option to narrow down the map!

Filter by

The land the City of Ypsilanti occupies is the ancestral, traditional, and contemporary lands of the Anishinaabeg – (including Odawa, Ojibwe and Boodewadomi) and Wyandot peoples.

Getting Started

Your Zero Waste Survival Kit

Here are a few things you can carry with you that will open up a lot of zero waste options. These are just suggestions, so feel free to customize your zero waste survival kit to fit your needs.

Do your best not to make any new purchases while putting together your kit. For example, you probably already have cutlery you can use instead of buying a new “to-go” set. Most of these things you can find at home or at a second hand shop,  and some of them you can even make!


Tupperware or Food Container

Essential for to-go food or getting things from a deli counter


Reusable Bag

Comes in very handy, especially if you come across an unexpected zero waste store!


Cloth Napkin

Replaces tissue and paper napkins, and can be used as a food container in a pinch


Reusable Cutlery

For eating on the go, or if a restaurant is using disposable cutlery


Cup or Mug

If you need a drink while out and about


38% of Michigan’s Municipal Waste Is Biodegradable

Aside from not buying new things, making sure your food scraps get composted is likely the very best thing you can do to reduce your personal waste footprint. Here’s how to get composting in Ypsilanti:

Get connected with a neighbor

You can check out the Share Waste app to see if your neighbors may be willing to take your compost.

Start your own compost

If you have a yard, you can consider making your own compost pile! Here’s a good intro how to video.

How do I transport compost?

We’ve found that if you need to keep compost in your home it’s best to freeze it in a bag. That also makes it easier to manage when you’re transporting it to your nearest compost.

Grocery Shopping

Build your zero waste shopping routine

Food is where you will find the most friction when trying to reduce waste.

Get What YOu Can Close to home

Go to the store you tend to shop at and do a completely zero waste shopping trip. That way, you know what items you can get without changing your routine.

Find a great bulk Store

For the things you can’t get at your usual store, you’ll need to find a specialty store that fills the gaps. Filter the map above to find your closest bulk store.

Build in a Trip To The Market

If you can find a farmers market close to home or somewhere you visit often, it’s great to build a routine around market days. E.g., every Saturday go to the library, walk downtown, and pick up food from the market on the way home.

Ypsilanti Food Co-Op

Great bulk section, loose veggies, spices, coffee, and grains!

Growing Hope Farmers Markets

Support local farmers and bring your own bag.

Save food from going to landfill

Olio allows you to list and pick up excess food from your neighbors


Keep your stuff out of the landfill

Learn to Repair

Join Maker Works or All Hands Active at a community repair day!

iFixIt Repair Guides

Repair guides for everything, written by everyone.

Tool Sharing

All Hands Active has a tool sharing program for members, the library offers some tools to checkout, or  you can list or request tools on Olio to start up tool sharing in Ann Arbor.


Additional helpful links 

County Trash to Treasures Guide

Comprehensive list of all the resources you could need to rent, repair, donate, or recycle your stuff!