Litter Cleanups

20 Minute Cleanup

The 20 Minute Cleanup is an annual Howard County spring clean­ing project held the whole month of April.  Most years, busi­nesses, schools, com­mu­nity groups, neigh­bors and indi­vid­u­als help keep trash out of the environment.

Howard County Maryland

How to Participate

Par­tic­i­pat­ing in the 20 Minute Cleanup is easy. Just pick a loca­tion and then safely pick up the lit­ter that you find. Use your reg­u­lar trash and recy­cling pickup ser­vice to dis­pose of what you collect.

Once vol­un­teers do a cleanup, we ask that they send an email to with the num­ber of peo­ple who par­tic­ipated and how many bags of trash and recy­cling col­lected. Pic­tures are encour­aged! We post the results and thank all the par­tic­i­pants on this web­site. Cleanup results can also be shared on social media using @livegreenhoward and #20minutecleanup.

If you have any ques­tions about how to par­tic­i­pate, please email us. Here is a copy of the printable flyer. Feel free to use the flyer to help pro­mote the project and get peo­ple involved.

Since 2010, over 18,000 people have par­tic­i­pated! Most did more than 20 min­utes, but at 20 min­utes each, that’s over 6,000 hours of vol­un­teer­ing! Thank you Howard County – let’s keep it going. By work­ing together, we make a real difference.

2024 Thank You List | 2024 Photo Album

2023 Thank You List | 2023 Photo Album

2022 Thank You List2022 Photo Album

2021 – cleanup was on, but due to COVID it was not promoted and results were not tracked.

2020 – cancelled due to COVID stay at home order.

2019 Thank You List2019 Photo Album

2018 Thank You List2018 Photo Album
2017 Thank You List | 2017 Photo Album
2016 Thank You List | 2016 Photo Album

Howard County's Litter Cleanup

Stream Cleanups

Howard County par­tic­i­pates in at least two stream cleanup projects per year. The Recre­ation and Parks Depart­ment leads cleanups each fall as part of the Inter­na­tional Coastal Cleanup. In the spring, we par­tic­i­pate in Project Clean Stream. If you would like to find out when these cleanups are hap­pen­ing, join our volunteer mailing list or fol­low live­g­reen­howard on social media.


The Howard County Depart­ment of Pub­lic Works is com­mit­ted to pro­vid­ing the cit­i­zens of Howard County with a clean and envi­ron­men­tally safe com­mu­nity. Street sweeping is per­formed on most county roads four times a year. The Bureau of High­ways road crews con­sis­tently travel through­out the county clean­ing up debris on county roads. The Bureau of High­ways also oper­ates an Adopt-A-Road program.

Hun­dreds of Howard County cit­i­zens are mak­ing a dif­fer­ence by vol­unteer­ing to mon­i­tor and clean up road­sides. Groups adopt a one to three mile sec­tion of a county road for a min­i­mum of two years. Lit­ter is col­lected as needed, at a min­i­mum of four times per year with a major clean-up each spring.