SB 1383: New State Organic Waste Regulations - Effective 2022
You may have heard that new California organic waste regulations (SB 1383) come into effect Jan. 1, 2022. Among other things, the state regulation requires residents and businesses to recycle their organic waste – meaning things like food waste, yard waste, paper, and cardboard. Organic wastes are targeted because they produce methane, a potent greenhouse gas, when they decompose in a landfill.
There is good news for Placer County residents and businesses. Whether garbage is collected curbside or dropped off at one of the transfer stations in the county, it goes to one of two Materials Recovery Facilities (MRFs) where many of these materials, with the exception of food waste, are already being recovered for recycling, see for yourself!
While the county has been preparing for the regulations to make organic recycling easy for you, there are still things that we all can do as individuals or businesses to help make a difference – such as preventing food waste or taking steps to keep food waste and other organic materials out of our landfills. Find tips for more purposeful shopping and cooking, and good food storage techniques here. Composting at home is also a great option.
The Western Placer Waste Management Authority (WPWMA) selected a new MRF operator to implement innovative technologies that will significantly increase the amount of organic waste recycled – including food waste – to meet SB 1383’s required recovery rates. The improvements are expected to begin in mid-2022 and will satisfy residential SB 1383 organic waste recycling requirements so that western Placer County residents will not be required to separate food waste from their garbage.
Some CalRecycle waivers apply in the Tahoe area, including a waiver from the SB 1383 requirement to separate and recycle food waste so that Eastern County residents will not be required to separate food waste from their garbage.
The improved processing at the WPWMA MRF will also satisfy SB 1383 organic waste recycling requirements for businesses in western Placer County as well as contractors that must comply with CALGreen recycling requirements. View WPWMA’s press release hereWPWMA_Press Release MRF Operator_120621.pdf.
For Eastern Placer County, CalRecycle waivers include a waiver from the SB 1383 requirement for businesses in the Tahoe area to separate and recycle food waste.
However, no matter which portion of the County businesses are in, certain businesses are still required to recycle their organic waste under existing law (AB 1826) and may need to participate in the existing commercial food waste collection program. Learn more about these exemptions and the existing commercial food waste collection program hereMandatory Commercial Organics Recycling.
The SB 1383 regulations also require certain business sectors to donate edible food to food recovery organizations before it is thrown away. The county is developing an edible food recovery program which will connect businesses throughout the county to organizations that ensure this good food is distributed to feed people in need.
In coordination with Placer County Environmental Health and the local food banks, Placer County Environmental Engineering hosted a virtual town hall meeting on February 15, 2022, to discuss SB 1383 organic waste regulation and what it means for businesses in Placer County. A recording of the town hall meeting can be found here, along with a copy of the County’s adopted Organic Waste Disposal Reduction Ordinance that was discussed in the town hall as a proposed ordinance, which was subsequently adopted on March 8, 2022.