Composting & Recycling Laws

There are a few important laws related to recycling and waste management in California that you should know about. These California recycling laws are aimed at helping the state reach its diversion goals and to keep resources out of the landfill.

For residents, the Short-lived Climate Pollutants Law (SB 1383) is really the only one you should be aware of, the rest pertain to businesses or multifamily dwellings.

SB 1383: Short-Lived Climate Pollutants

Our dependence on fossil fuels, industrial agriculture, and the immense amount of waste produced by our modern lifestyles has resulted in a climate crises: hotter summers with world record-breaking temperatures, even more devastating fire seasons, more extreme droughts, and rising sea levels that erode our coastlines.

When organic materials like food scraps and yard waste are landfilled, they break down anaerobically (without oxygen). This creates methane, a greenhouse gas 84 times more potent than carbon dioxide (CO2). According to CalRecycle, landfills are the third largest source of methane emissions in California.

To respond to this climate crisis, California has implemented SB 1383, statewide organic waste recycling and surplus food recovery. 

SB 1383 Requirements & Compliance

SB 1383: Residential Requirements

All residents must sort recyclable and compostable materials into the appropriate containers and those with landfill collection service must also subscribe to and utilize recycling and compost service.

How Do Residents Comply with SB 1383?

Subscribe to and participate in compostables service.

Marin Sanitary Service offers a residential bundled service package with weekly curbside collection of compostables (organics), recycling, and garbage service.

SB 1383: Multifamily Dwelling Requirements (5 or more units)

  • Collect food waste, yard waste, and paper separately from all other waste.
  • Provide organic waste collection services for tenants and employees.
  • Supply and allow access to an adequate number and size of containers with the correct container colors and labels.
  • Annually educate tenants and employees on how to properly sort organic waste into the correct bins, and provide information to new tenants within 14 days of occupation of the premises.

How Do Multifamily Dwellings Comply with SB 1383?

Subscribe to and participate in compostables service.

Marin Sanitary Service offers multifamily compostables (organics)recycling, and garbage service.

We Can Help

We can help you be in compliance! Our recycling coordinators can do site visits and audits, supply educational materials, and provide ongoing technical assistance.

SB 1383: Commercial Requirements

  • Collect food waste, yard waste, and paper separately from all other waste.
  • Subscribe and participate in an organics curbside collection service.
  • Provide collection containers for organic waste and recyclables in all areas where disposal containers are provided for customers, except in restrooms.
  • Provide education to employees, contractors, tenants, and customer on how to properly sort organic material into the correct containers.
  • Certain commercial edible food generators are required to donate their edible food.*

How Do Businesses Comply With SB 1383?

Subscribe to and participate in compostables and/or Food 2 Energy service.

Marin Sanitary Service offer commercial compostables (organics) service. We also offer a Commercial Food 2 Energy food-waste-only service for qualifying customers.

*Certain commercial edible food generators are required to donate surplus edible food. Learn more about these requirements at the Zero Waste Marin website.

We Can Help

We can help you be in compliance! Our recycling coordinators can do site visits and audits, supply educational materials, and provide ongoing technical assistance.

AB 341: MANDATORY COMMERCIAL RECYCLING

In 2012, California adopted AB 341 the Mandatory Commercial Recycling Measure to enhance systems that capture recyclable materials from the commercial sector.

The purpose of the law is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by diverting commercial solid waste from landfills and expand opportunities for recycling in California.

Image of paper and container recyclable materials

AB 341 Requirements & Compliance

AB 341: Multifamily Dwelling Requirements

Complexes of five (5) or more units must recycle.

How Do Multifamily Dwellings Comply With AB 341?

Subscribe to and participate in recycling service.

Marin Sanitary Service offers recycling service for multifamily properties.

We Can Help

We can help you be in compliance! Our recycling coordinators can do site visits and audits, supply educational materials, and provide ongoing technical assistance.

AB 341: Commercial Requirements

Businesses, including public entities, that generate four (4) or more cubic yards of solid waste per week must recycle.

How Do Businesses Comply With AB 341?

Subscribe to and participate in recycling service.

Marin Sanitary Service offers recycling service for commercial businesses.

We Can Help

We can help you be in compliance! Our recycling coordinators can do site visits and audits, supply educational materials, and provide ongoing technical assistance.

AB 827: COMMERCIAL ORGANICS AND RECYCLING BINS

The state of California has passed several laws related to the disposal of commercial waste in our state. This is because our recyclables are made of valuable natural resources, and by recycling we can conserve those resources and prevent greenhouse gas emissions. Separating our waste helps preserve our natural environment and prevent climate change.

Image of three cans labeled for garbage, recycling and compost

AB 827 Requirements & Compliance

AB 827: Commercial Organics & Recycling Bins

Businesses subject to AB 341 and AB 1826 must provide bins to customers for collecting organics and recycling alongside trash bins.

How Do Businesses Comply With AB 827?

Provide recycling and compostables containers next to trash receptacles. Make sure to color-code and label the new bins and include pictures or descriptions of what can go in each one.

We Can Help

We can help you be in compliance! Our recycling coordinators can do site visits and audits, supply educational materials, and provide ongoing technical assistance.

Zero Waste Marin Logo

Additional laws and local ordinances

Learn more about California recycling laws and Marin County’s foodware and plastic bag ordinances, visit Zero Waste Marin.
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