Front Range Waste Diversion Program


About FRWD

Request for Applications (RFA) | Grants | Technical Assistance | Resources | Contact

The Front Range Waste Diversion (FRWD, or “forward”) program provides grants and technical assistance to Front Range communities to increase recycling, composting, and waste reduction. The FRWD enterprise consists of the FRWD board of directors and program administrative staff at CDPHE.

The current three-year strategic plan identifies goals in three focus areas:

  • Data collection and analysis.
  • Municipal solid waste, including organics and recycling.
  • Non-municipal solid waste, focusing on construction and demolition debris.

The Front Range Waste Diversion (FRWD, or “forward”) program and enterprise fund was approved by the Colorado state legislature in 2019 and collects funds from an increase in user fees at Front Range landfill to provide grants and technical assistance to Front Range communities to increase recycling, composting, and waste reduction.

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Request for applications

The open period for Letter of Intent submissions for the Front Range Waste Diversion request for application #BF083122 has closed.

Stage 1

Letter of Intent due June 20, 2022 at 3:00 p.m. MDT

FRWD RFA #BF083122 utilizes a new two-stage application process. The FRWD board of directors will now review the submitted Letters of Intent (LOIs) and invite select applicants to progress to the second stage. Applicants who are invited by the FRWD board of directors to progress to the second stage will then complete a full application in response to the posted RFA by August 31, 2022 at 3:00 p.m. MDT. Please note that only applicants who have submitted an LOI, and are then provided a link to apply by the FRWD board of directors, will be able to submit a full application.

Stage 2

Full application for invited applicants due August 31, 2022 at 3:00 p.m. MDT

Questions from invited applicants surrounding the RFA must be submitted via email to by 3:00 p.m. on August 5, 2022. Questions will be answered via a PDF document posted to the FRWD webpage on August 12, 2022.

About the RFA

The Colorado State Legislature established the Front Range Waste Diversion Enterprise (FRWD, or “forward”) in 2019 to advance sustainable waste diversion across the Front Range. The FRWD Enterprise consists of the FRWD board of directors (board) and staff from the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment (CDPHE), and provides grants and technical assistance to Front Range communities—including local governments, businesses, institutions, and other entities engaged in Zero Waste solutions—to increase waste diversion to achieve the following waste diversion goals: 39% by 2026 and 51% by 2036. The FRWD enterprise fund is financed by an increase in user fees at Front Range landfills. Collection of these fees began in January 2020 and will increase over the next several years, ultimately providing an estimated $15,000,000 per year.

This request for application (RFA) focuses broadly on all aspects of Waste Diversion & Reduction on the Front Range including, but not limited to, projects that address recycling, organic waste and composting, construction & demolition materials, waste reduction and reuse. Colorado’s current recycling and composting rate is 15%, far below the national average of 32%, with the Front Range, which contains 85% of Colorado’s population and 85% of its waste, lagging even further behind state diversion goals. Colorado’s recycling and composting rate has largely stagnated in recent years and is barely keeping up with population growth, although many promising efforts have been initiated that should help to increase this rate in the future. The FRWD board of directors particularly invites grant applications for efforts that would meaningfully move this needle on waste diversion.

Eligible applications can be from affected municipalities, haulers, or for-profit or non-profit supporting entities working to increase waste diversion on the Front Range. FRWD focus areas for this Waste Diversion RFA include projects addressing:

  • Recycling collections, processing, and remanufacturing using recycled materials.
  • Organic waste (including yard debris, grass clippings, and food scraps) collections and processing to create compost and other beneficial products.
  • Construction and demolition (C&D) waste diversion and reduction, including deconstruction programs, and end market development for unique C&D materials.
  • Programs and policies to promote waste reduction and reuse.
  • Other creative ideas for increasing waste diversion.

The ideal grant application will propose a project centered around planning, adoption, implementation, or expansion of at least one of the following criteria: infrastructure, end market development and/or expansion of existing end markets, or local policy/ordinance adoption and implementation, which may include funding for staff. We will encourage awardees to share information on their projects with other Front Range communities, including results and lessons learned.

This is the sixth round of grant funding under the FRWD grant program. Subsequent grant funding opportunities are planned to be published three (3) times per year. The focus of each RFA will alternate between a community zero waste focus and a special-focus topic to be decided by the FRWD board.

Read complete details on the RFA#BF083122

Schedule of activities (updated May 5, 2022)

All documents and communication will be posted on


Check out upcoming grant opportunities and key differences between the RREO and FRWD programs.


Technical Assistance Service Provider (TASP)

Request for proposals (RFP) is now closed.

The FRWD program is piloting an innovative new model that will help advance communities up the "zero waste ladder."

The FRWD board will review proposals from qualified applicants for the second phase of the Technical Assistance Service Provider (TASP) program. Finalists will be notified in late July 2022, and finalist interviews (if needed) will be scheduled for August 3, 2022. The estimated notification of award is slated for mid-August 2022. The estimated contract effective date is October 2022.

  Read the final report from phase 1

  Read the request for proposals

Answers to questions asked during the Request for Proposals (RFP) inquiry period are now available.

  Questions and answers for FRWD RFP



The awarded organizations, amount allocated, and projects for the three most recent FRWD grant award summaries are available:



Front Range Waste Diversion baseline assessment

The FRWD Program contracted with Eco-Cycle to collect data on the current state of waste diversion programs and policies within the municipalities and counties of Colorado’s Front Range. The data collected includes the number of Front Range residents who have access to services like curbside recycling for a fee; universal, bundled, or pay-as-you-throw (PAYT); yard waste diversion, and curbside organics collection. The data establishes a baseline number for municipalities that have already adopted a waste reduction and diversion plan and municipalities who may require additional assistance to establish a program, which will assist the board’s assessment of the effectiveness of board’s activities and allow the board to manage future grant offerings along the Front Range. The report was presented to the FRWD board in December 2021.

Front Range Waste Diversion baseline assessment data

Trouble viewing? Access the FRWD baseline assessment data from Tableau or view the reports below.

Report: Front Range Waste Diversion baseline assessment.

Presentation of report findings: FRWD baseline assessment on Waste Diversion Programs.



Kendra Appelman-Eastvedt

Christina Cain

Erin Girard

Sonya Hansen

Megan Vinet