New Commercial Recycling Regulations to Take Effect July 1
(February 9, 2012) Starting July 1, businesses and public entities that generate four cubic yards or more of waste per week and multifamily units of five or more will be required to recycle.
The requirement was contained in legislation signed into law last year, AB 341 (Chesbro; D-North Coast). The purpose of this new law, as stated by the California Department of Resources, Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle), is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by diverting commercial solid waste to recycling efforts and expand opportunities for additional recycling services and recycling manufacturing facilities in California.
CalRecycle has provided the following information about the law and offers resources to help businesses meet the recycling requirements.
Who Must Comply
- Businesses and public entities that generate four or more cubic yards of solid waste per week.
- Multifamily residential dwellings that have five or more units.
How to Comply
Businesses can take one or any combination of the following in order to reuse, recycle, compost or otherwise divert solid waste from disposal:
- Subscribe to a hauler(s).
- Arrange for pick-up of recyclables.
- Subscribe to a recycling service that may include mixed waste processing that yields diversion results comparable to source separation.
CalRecycle advises businesses to contact their local recycling coordinator to find out how to recycle in their community and if there are any specific requirements in their community (see the contacts link below).
Communities may have mandatory commercial recycling ordinances with different thresholds or more specific business recycling requirements than the state law. The local recycling coordinator also may have related business opportunities and/or resources to share.
Recycling benefits identified by CalRecycle include:
- Opportunities for businesses or multifamily complexes to save money.
- Creating jobs in California by providing materials for recycling manufacturing facilities.
- Reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
- Keeping valuable materials out of landfills.
- Creating a healthy environment for the community and future generations by recovering natural resources.
- CalRecycle Staff and Local Jurisdiction Contacts: www.calrecycle.ca.gov/lgcentral/reports/contacts.aspx. Look up CalRecycle staff and local jurisdiction staff by city/county.
- Mandatory Commercial Recycling Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): www.calrecycle.ca.gov/climate/recycling/faq.htm. A comprehensive list of mandatory commercial recycling questions and answers developed in response to stakeholder inquiries.
- Institute for Local Government Commercial Recycling Resource Center: www.ca-ilg.org/commercialrecycling. The institute offers a webinar series and flyer templates.
- Webinar Series: www.ca-ilg.org/CommercialRecyclingWebinar. Webinar topics: adopting a commercial recycling ordinance; creating effective commercial recycling education and outreach activities; creating enforcement and compliance elements for commercial recycling; addressing recycling programs at apartment complexes; and understanding mandatory commercial recycling regulations—education, outreach and monitoring requirements.
- Template Flyers (for business and multifamily outreach and education): www.ca-ilg.org/CommercialRecyclingFlyer. Downloadable mandatory commercial recycling flyer and cover letter templates with modification instructions.
Staff Contact: Brenda M. Coleman