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Texas's First Litter Database Launches As the only database tracking detailed litter information for Texas, this tool will revolutionize how government entities, volunteers, and nonprofits collect and report cleanup data. 7/8/21

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STOP | Texas Litter Database Stop stands for Study, Track, Remove and Prevent, which is the driving force behind the Texas Litter Database. 


Texas Litter Database Story Map Litter is a hazard for wildlife and humans, spreading disease and injuring or killing wildlife. Over 1 million marine animals (including mammals, fish, sharks, turtles, and birds) are killed each year due to plastic debris in the ocean (UNESCO Facts & Figures on Marine Pollution). 


Texans are proud of our state, but our green spaces and waterways are suffering from a pandemic that hit local funding for litter clean-up, illegal dumping enforcement, recycling infrastructure, and vital personal protective equipment (PPE). We are documenting the problem in local communities across Texas. Our members and followers have offered pictures from around the state to help understand litter and illegal dumping patterns to help find solutions. Please click a location on the map or use the navigation bar below to see what's in your area.


Send us your pictures of litter (in water or on land) in your community that needs a solution. Help us and our communities and state. Snap a picture, then send it to us using the Contact Form.

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News Archives

Two West Texas companies donate dumpsters to Ector County 2/23/21 West Tex Disposal and Basin Disposal got involved in efforts to stop illegal dumping in Ector County by donating 30-yard dumpsters.

Can this deposit-like system fly in Texas? Crews remove plastic litter from Hunting Bayou in the Houston area. | Courtesy of Texans for Clean Water 3/30/21

Plastic bags are killing horses and cows across the state. What's Texas to do? 8/14/19 Texas Tribune A year after the Texas Supreme Court dealt a death blow to municipal bans on plastic bags, legislative efforts to revive them have fallen flat, and ranchers, city leaders and environmental groups say plastic bag litter is as big a problem as ever.

CITY OF LAREDO, TEXAS v. LAREDO MERCHANTS ASSOCIATION; from Webb County; 4th Court of Appeals District Read More

Keep San Angelo beautiful holds volunteer litter collection 10/25/20

Cocho Valley - Picking up litter along the Red Arroyo and throughout town

Boy Scouts tackle littering along Scenic Drive 10/25/20

KVIA - A group of El Paso Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts spent their entire Sunday valiantly trying to make a dent in the flow of trash and discarded items that have built up around certain areas of Scenic Drive.

To curb illegal dumping, city considers surveillance cameras 10/23/20

Denton Record-Chronicle - Following continual problems with illegal dumping around the city, Denton Parks and Recreation officials say they are considering installing surveillance cameras.

Plastic converted to oil in project to raise awareness 10/19/20
Waste & Recycle Magazine - A non-profit in Hawaii has collected over 1.2 million plastic caps and lids and shipped them to Texas for conversion into oil.

Illegal dumping continues in Lubbock 10/15/20
Everything Lubbock - The City of Lubbock Code Enforcement and Solid Waste departments said illegal dumping still continues to be an issue in the city.

Keep Midland Beautiful gears up to ‘Fight Dirty’ 10/13/20 

Big 2/Fox 24 – Keep Midland Beautiful is gearing up for a fight! A fight against litter in the Tall City.

Community Members Say Illegal Dumping is a Growing Concern 10/8/20 

The piles of trash present a safety concern as it obstructs visibility to oncoming traffic by an Edinburg residential area. Community members fear someone will light the trash on fire, causing added stress among neighbors.

County seeks grant to thwart illegal dumping 9/25/20 

Athens Daily Review - Illegal dumping can be an eyesore as well as a safety hazard in Henderson County and Commissioners Court is seeking a grant to help catch some of the scofflaws.

The World’s Worst Companies For Plastic Waste Pollution [Infographic] 10/18/2020 

Forbes -  A new report published by the Changing Markets Foundation has shed light on the world’s worst companies for plastic pollution...

Predicted growth in plastic waste exceeds efforts to mitigate plastic pollution 10/18/20 

Science Magazine - Plastic pollution is a planetary threat, affecting nearly every marine and freshwater ecosystem globally. 

Trinity River trash buildup was already a huge challenge. COVID-19 hasn’t helped. 10/17/20 

Fort Worth Star Telegram - Trash was already a problem along Trinity River and aggravated by the uptick of visitors amid coronavirus pandemic. Fort Worth residents are concerned over lack of trash cans, messaging and respect. 

Another side effect of COVID-19: Too. Much. Trash. 10/16/20 

KHOU 11 - Every day in Houston, people are trashing up our city by tossing tens of thousands of disposable masks and gloves on the ground. 

Illegal trash dumping causes confusion about who is supposed to pick it up 10/15/20 

KVEO — Illegal trash dumping is causing confusion over which county is supposed to pick it up. 

Third Ward residents clean up their neighborhood's illegal dumping site 8/30/20 

KTRK TV - Illegal dumping in Third Ward has been a problem for years, and one group is sick of it. They even braved 100 degree temperatures to prove it. 

Donna neighbors frustrated over illegal dumping 8/28/20 

KRGV - Illegal dumping is an expensive problem that continues to grow and residents of the city of Donna say they are tired of the constant trash plague. 

Illegal tire dumping in Leon County, police offering cash reward for information 8/19/20 

KWKT FOX 44 - Leon County Sheriff Kevin Ellis and Commissioner Precinct 4 David Grimes are asking for tips regarding the illegal dump of tires outside the Precinct 4 dump site. 

City of Mission tracks illegal dumpers with addresses found on trash 8/13/20 

KGBT TV - Illegal dumping has been increasing in the city of Mission after Hurricane Hanna forced many to gut out their homes. 

Ellis County Fire Marshal issues letter to property managers on illegal dumping 8/7/20 

Waxahachie Daily Light - On July 30, the Ellis county Fire Marshal’s Office released the following letter to property managers in an effort to reduce the quantity of materials illegally dumped in Ellis County. 

Fort Worth business keeps people experiencing homelessness employed during pandemic 7/29/20 

WFAA - Picking up trash from waterways isn’t an easy or fun job, but it’s a job, and that’s what Frank Crist needed. 

Protective masks, gloves starting to litter North Texas parking lots 4/22/20

Fox 4 News - Parking lots and sidewalks in North Texas are accumulating disposable masks and gloves.

Littering and flushing of face masks, latex gloves in El Paso continues 4/22/20

CBS4 - Officials with the El Paso Water Utilities said it has not seen a decrease in people flushing personal protective equipment, and it could ultimately cost the rate payer to fix the consequences.

Texans Are Littering Streets With Used Masks & It's A Huge Health Hazard 4/22/20

Narcity - Plus it's a hefty fine if you're caught.

With TxDOT grant, UTA team to test feasibility of recycled plastics in road construction 4/20/20 EurekAlert! - Building roads from plastic recyclables


Goodwill donation boxes overflow, police step in 4/14/20

KVEO-TV - The Goodwill Store in Alamo has been taped off by police, but not for the reason you might think.


Volunteers Gather Over 16,000 Pounds Of Trash From The San Marcos River 4/13/20

Corridor News - About 600 volunteers from all walks of life picked up more than 16,000 pounds of trash during the 35th Annual Great Texas River Cleanup in March.


“Texas Standard” Wins National Three National Headliner Awards 4/9/20

KUT - A three-part series about illegal dumping in West Texas won a first-place National Headliner award.


Medical trash becoming problem in supermarket parking lots across North Texas 4/8/20

WFAA – “It doesn’t go in the recycling bin and it definitely doesn’t go on the ground”


TRASHED: Medical gloves, disposable face masks, wipes now litter parking lots 4/7/20

KEYE - As shoppers take more precautions at the grocery stores, many are tossing gloves, wipes and face masks in parking lots.

PRESS RELEASE: Texas Water Supplies Are Safe; Don't Flush Disinfectant Wipes 3/21/20

TWCA - The safety of the state’s water supply and the health of water users across the state is of utmost importance to the Texas Water Conservation Association (TWCA) and its members, who provide safe drinking water to millions of Texans every day.

Ella Elkins Saves the Oceans by recycling plastic in West Texas 3/3/20

San Angelo Times - A 10-year-old girl in San Angelo is using her efforts to save the oceans by getting rid of plastic bags in West Texas.

Littering results in man's arrest on outstanding Texas warrants 3/2/20

Dothan Eagle - A Dothan man accused of littering on the roadway while walking was arrested for an outstanding warrant out of Texas.

City of Austin may not have place to take trash after council votes down Waste Management contract extension 2/28/20 KVUE - Hundreds of city facilities are currently serviced by Waste Management, but the council voted to not extend it.

Volunteers needed for Great Texas River Clean Up in March 2/27/20FOX 7 Austin - The City of San Marcos, Texas State University and the City of Kyle are calling on volunteers to register for the 35th Annual Great Texas River Clean Up.

Volunteers sweep coastal waters for abandoned crab traps 2/26/20

Victoria Advocate - John Pistone and RJ Shelly scanned the shoreline for abandoned crab traps Monday morning on a mirror-slick upper Hynes Bay.

Dallas Has a Roadmap to Crack Down On Illegal Dumping. Will The City Use It? 2/21/20

Dallas Observer - For more than a year, Dallas has been sitting on a report addressing the city's trash problem.

Amercians dump 100 plastic bottles in nature each year 2/19/20
The Washington Post – You may not realize it, but every year you dump the equivalent of 100 plastic water bottles into the environment.

3 men accused of illegally dumping hundreds of tires in Humble area 1/30/20

KHOU 11 - Witnesses alerted deputies Thursday and three men were arrested after they were caught illegally dumping tires in the Humble area.

A spike in illegal dumping affecting operations in Hidalgo County Pct. 4 1/24/20

CBS 4 News - Hidalgo County Pct. 4 is seeing a spike in reports of illegal dumping, which is affecting their day to day operations.


Business owners say illegal dumping on East Austin road must stop 1/14/20

FOX7 Austin - Ferguson Cutoff is a well-traveled two-lane road that links US 290 East to Old Manor Road. It's also a dumping ground.

Washed Up Texas promotes beach health through beach-litter sculptures 12/27/19

Port Isabel-South Padre Press - Most of us love the ocean, live near it or wish we did. For artist Connie Lovell, who lives in Harlingen, the ocean is her “heart and soul.” 

Volunteers with the Surfrider Foundation pulled 350 pounds of litter off beach 12/27/19

Kris6 News - Church's chicken kitchen fire causes closure: Volunteers pull 350 pounds of litter off beach.

Angelina County non-profit helping with litter issue 12/17/19

KTRE9 - An East Texas non-profit is bringing awareness to a littering in Angelina County.

Can plastic recycling be fixed? 12/5/19 

Houston Chronicle - Most plastic waste ends up in landfills, incinerators of in the environment. The national recycling rate for plastic is about 9 percent, according to the latest data from the Environmental Protection Agency.

Illegal dump site is now estimated at 50,000 tires | Officials say cleanup could cost $150,000 12/16/19

What started out as a count of 20,000 discarded tires left in a wooded area near Simms, may actually be closer to 50,000 according to both Bowie County fire and environmental officials.

City of Tye dealing with illegal dumping, police warn about big fines 12/1/19

KTXS12 - The City of Tye is asking for your help to put a stop to illegal dumping.

Continuous illegal dumping incidents at The Salvation Army of Abilene 11/27/19

Fox West Texas - The Salvation Army of Abilene has encountered a number of illegal dumping incidents recently and are informing the public what not to bring.

County officials warn of dangers with illegal trash dumping 11/26/19

News Channel 6 - Near major roads and rivers you’ll see signs warning people against illegally dumping.

Illegal dumping costing some landowners money 11/8/19

CBS4 News - Illegal dumping in the Valley has been a problem for years and is costing landowners money.

against litter.

'Highway warriors' battle litter in Fannin County 10/29/19 

North Texas E-News - Oct. 19th, on a fine Saturday, 14 brave highway warriors gathered to KEEP TEXAS BEAUTIFUL. All were determined to eliminate as much trash as the law allowed. (Ugly mailboxes were eyed suspiciously).  Results:  a great 2-mile ride cleaned up.

Love Longview campaign organized to curb litter trend 10/22/19

Longview News-Journal - City, school and quasi-government representatives are launching “Love Longview,” a campaign meant to raise awareness and take action

​Sen. Rodriguez’s Tire Legislation Vetoed 6/20/17
Rio Grande Guardian - Texas Gov. Greg Abbott last week vetoed state Sen. José Rodríguez’s Senate Bill 570, which, the author of the legislation says, would have helped communities deal with the problem of scrap tires being illegally dumped.

HB 1884 passed to Governor Abbott  6/5/17
TFCW Media Release - House Bill 1884 allows judges to sentence convicted litterers to up to 60 hours of community service picking up litter or working in a recycling facility in their county of residence.

​Messing up Texas could soon cost you time in addition to a fine 5/24/17
The Houston Chronicle - Starting Sept. 1, the famous anti-littering slogan "Don't Mess With Texas" will pack a new punch. 

New state bill could make people who litter do community service 5/21/17

KWTX-TV News 10 - Texas lawmakers are considering a bill that could cut down on littering.

Senator Rodríguez’s Scrap Tire Bill Passes Senate 4/5/17
El Paso Herald - S.B. 570, a bill by state Sen. José Rodríguez that outlines methods by which tires may be disposed and improves enforcement capabilities, passed the full Senate Tuesday; it now goes to the House for consideration.

Earth Day Texas returns to Fair Park with a film festival, hackathon 2/2/17
The Dallas Morning News - Earth Day Texas is returning to Fair Park this April, and this year the world's largest green expo boasts a new film festival and a "hackathon." ​

Statement on Texas Attorney General’s Lawsuit against City of Brownsville 10/13/16
​City of Brownsville - The City of Brownsville disagrees with the Texas Attorney General’s assertions; not only has the ordinance demonstrated positive impacts for the environment, but it has also served as a model for communities everywhere.

​Port Aransas "bags" its plastic bag ban 9/26/16 - The Port Aransas City Council has bagged a plastic bag ban after just nine months. City Council voted five to one to suspend the ordinance.  They took that action after the city of Laredo got tangled in a lawsuit over their own ban on plastic bags.

​South San Antonio’s tire piles might finally shrink 9/30/16 
San Antonio Express-News - A state judge has ordered the cleanup of a massive tire dump that once received local tax breaks with hopes the business would create 30 jobs on the South Side.

Court Strikes Blow to Laredo Bag Ban, Local Control 8/17/16The Texas Tribune - A state appeals court has struck down a plastic bag ban in Laredo in a high-profile fight over local control that could ultimately impact similar laws in other Texas cities.

New scrap tire rules target mosquito breeding grounds 7/4/16
Houston Chronicle - City inspectors will visit 1,800 shops in effort to limit spread of Zika virus.

Houston launches new glass recycling effort 6/29/16
KHOU 11 - Mayor Turner launched a new effort that he hopes will make it a little easier for residents to recycle glass bottles while the city works to bring back curbside glass recycling.

Laredo's plastic bag ban dispute has state-wide significance as appeals court considers case 6/29/16
Laredo Morning Times - For nearly a decade, Laredoans have heard from both sides: those in favor of a plastic bag reduction ordinance and those against it.

World’s largest Earth Day festival in Dallas has even bigger international ambitions 4/20/16 
The Dallas Morning News - Earth Day Texas already boasts that it is the world’s largest green expo. But that’s hardly enough.

Mayor Turner: Houston’s One Bin Program All But Dead 2/25/16
Houston Public Media - More than three years after its inception, the city of Houston’s proposed “One Bin For All” recycling project is going nowhere. Mayor Sylvester Turner says it’s not “something I want to move forward with right now, if at any time.”

​Texans for Clean Water praises Texas Senate Committee on Agriculture, Water & Rural Affairs for taking on critical issue of windborne and waterborne litter 12/18/15
PRWEB - ​The Texas Senate Committee on Agriculture, Water & Rural Affairs met on December 8, for an initial interim hearing. One of the crucial issues facing Texas including Texas Agriculture is windborne and waterborne litter that trashes public right of ways and fouls waterways and beaches.

​Our water infrastructure isn't up to task to handle pollution 11/20/15
Houston Chronicle - ​Last month's deluge was a good example of how stormwater pollution threatens our environment.

New city rules target illegal tire dumping 10/21/15
Houston Chronicle - City tightens rules to fight illegal dumping of thousands of scrap tires​.

Residents on San Marcos River seek remedy for tubers' trespasses, trash  9/4/15 - The tussle on the San Marcos is the latest version of an issue that has played out on a handful of Central Texas waterways, one that gets at questions of property rights, water safety, environmental protection and business regulation.

Data in the Heart of Texas 9/1/15
Resource Recycling reports a recent study indicates significant recycling opportunities exist in the Lone Star State, and the numbers have grabbed the attention of state legislators.

Austin aims to attract recycling and reuse partners  8/25/15
Resource Recycling - Austin, Texas is already known as the live music capital of the world. Now it's playing the opening riff in an effort to also become a major center of recycled materials consumption.

Trash floating in Galena Park's Hunting Bayou  7/13/15
KPRC Houston Channel 2 - Houston-area bayou is looking more like a landfill, with so much trash and debris making the water barely visible.

Plastics make up 13% of Austin's household garbage stream 6/26/15
Resource Recycling - Plastics Recycling reported, residents in Texas' capital threw away nearly twice as much plastic as they recycled via curbside bins last year, according to an estimate from the city.

Texas MRFs, Communities Join Forces to “Bag the Bag” 6/18/15 - If you can’t beat it, bag it. At least that’s what two material recovery facilities (MRFs) in the Lone Star State are attempting to do to tackle enemy No. 1—ubiquitous single-use plastic bags which relentlessly contaminate the recycling stream and tangle around equipment.

Recycling Haze  5/26/15
Houston Chronicle editorial - Consumers need clarity on what's acceptable in the recycling bin.

Trammell S. Crow: It’s not easy being a green Republican  4/25/15
Dallas Morning News editorial - Well-crafted environmental policy can be very good for the economy.

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