Medications that are flushed down toilets or poured down drains pollute waterways, including the San Francisco Bay. The presence of pharmaceutical compounds in treated wastewater is a growing environmental concern. Wastewater treatment plants were not designed to remove these types of chemicals, as well as those found in other household hazardous waste, which passes through the treatment process and is discharged straight into the Bay.
Use the following search engines to find safe disposal bins for unused, expired or unwanted prescription drugs and over-the-counter medication. Please note that the listed locations vary across these search engines.
Protect your privacy! Consolidate all pills and tablets into a Ziplock bag before bringing them to a drop-off location. Remove or scratch out all personal information on the medication packaging before recycling the container.
Residents in Counties with a pharmaceutical take-back ordinance may dispose of pharmaceuticals via the MED-Project program. (For Alameda, San Francisco, San Mateo, and Santa Clara Counties).
Locations also available with mail-back envelopes for pharmaceuticals, visit medproject.org.
All other counties use the Don’t Rush to Flush program.