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Organics Laws and Ordinances
AB 1826—Mandatory Commercial Organics Recycling
In October 2014, Governor Brown signed AB 1826 into law, requiring businesses on and after April 1, 2016 to recycle organics, including food scraps and yard/green waste. Initial requirements applied to businesses with 8 cubic yards of organic waste. The type and threshold amount of waste generated has changed over time.
As of January 1, 2021, ALL commercial businesses and multifamily complexes of 5 or more units that generate two (2) or more cubic yards per week of ANY kind of waste (trash, recycling, and organics combined) are required to arrange for organic waste collection services.
Businesses must take at least one or more of the following actions*:
- Source separate organic materials from solid waste and subscribe to a basic level of organic waste recycling service that includes collection and recycling/composting of organic waste.
- Recycle organic wastes onsite, or self-haul its own organic waste for recycling/composting.
- Make other arrangements for recycling of organic wastes—e.g. through a landscaper. Documentation is required.
Call 760-955-8615 to sign up for services, or for more details.
SB 1383 - Short-lived Climate Pollutants Reduction Act
California state law Senate Bill (SB) 1383 affects all businesses and residents in California. It was enacted in 2016 in order to reduce short-lived climate pollutants including methane gas. SB 1383 requires the state to dramatically expand its composting abilities and reduce the amount of waste sent to landfills. SB 1383 established the goal of reducing organic waste disposal in landfills by 50% by 2020 and 75% by 2025 compared to 2014 levels.
The law also set a goal to recover 20% of disposed edible food for human consumption by 2025. Organics are more than 30% of the waste stream in CA, comprising the largest portion of the disposed materials in California landfills. Recycling organics is integral to meeting the State’s overall 75% recycling goal by 2025.
SB 1383 requires all CA businesses (including non-profits and government agencies)--regardless of the amount of waste generated--to implement organic recycling programs. Waivers are available for locations generating small amounts of organics. Call 760-955-8615 to sign up for services or for more details.
EDIBLE FOOD RECOVERY REQUIREMENTS FOR BUSINESSES*:
SB 1383 requires commercial edible food generators to recover the maximum amount of edible food that would otherwise be disposed.
Generators shall comply with the requirement to recover food via a contract or written agreement with any or all of the following:
- Food recovery organizations or services that will collect their edible food for food recovery.
- Food recovery organizations that will accept the edible food that the generator self-hauls to the food recovery organization.
Edible food generators shall not intentionally spoil edible food that is able to be recovered.
Commercial edible food generators shall keep records of their food recovery program, including a copy of the written agreement/contract for food recovery, the name of organization(s) recovering food, the quantity of food recovered(pounds/mo), the type of food recovered, and the frequency of collection.
“Tier one” businesses must implement programs by January 1, 2022, and “Tier two” businesses must implement programs by January 1, 2024.
* Note: This is not a complete list of requirements.
DEFINITION OF TIER ONE AND TIER TWO BUSINESSES
“Tier one” businesses include supermarkets, grocery stores (with a total facility size > 10,000 sq. ft.), food service providers, food distributors, and wholesale food vendors.
“Tier two” businesses include restaurants with 250 or more seats or 5,000+ square feet, hotels with 200 or more rooms and on-site food facilities, health facilities with on-site food facility and 100 or more beds, large venues (including fairgrounds), and large events.
Food Donation Resources Available:
High Desert Second Chance is a 501(c)3 non-profit group and the lead agency for the High Desert Food Collaborative, a consortium of over 90 organizations that are active in providing donated food to the food insecure population of the Victor Valley and Barstow regions. To arrange for FREE collection of your organization’s surplus, edible food, contact High Desert Second Chance at 442-267-4444. Click here for a flier with more food donation information.
City of Victorville Environmental Programs Division staff is also available to assist businesses with setting up food donation programs. Please call the City at 760-955-8615 for more details.
City of Victorville Ordinance 2425--Mandatory Organic Waste Disposal Reduction
On April 19, 2022, City of Victorville Ordinance 2425 was adopted. Ordinance 2425 added Chapter 6.37 to the Victorville Municipal Code and is focused on reducing the amount of organic waste sent to the landfill. The ordinance requires residential and commercial customers to separate designated organic materials for recycling. The ordinance also includes sections to increase the recovery of edible food and direct the food to organizations that feed people.
The City’s new ordinance was adopted in response to CA state law Senate Bill (SB) 1383 which set the goal of reducing state methane gas emissions by 40% by the year 2030 vs. 2013 levels and to reduce the amount of organic waste sent to landfill by 75% by 2025 compared to 2014 levels. SB 1383 regulations to implement the law were finalized by the State of CA in late 2020 and require all CA jurisdictions to “…adopt enforceable ordinance(s), or similarly enforceable mechanisms…to mandate that organic waste generators, haulers, and other entities…comply with the requirements of this chapter.” SB 1383 regulations also require jurisdictions to implement programs to educate residential and commercial customers; monitor trash, recycling, and organics containers for contamination; notify customers of contamination and the requirement to separate materials; and to enforce the ordinance.
City Actions to Comply with SB 1383 and AB 1826
The City implemented organic recycling programs for its commercial and multifamily customers, in response to state law AB 1826, which applied to businesses generating more than 2 cubic yards/week of waste. In 2019, a food waste recycling program was started, followed by a green waste/garden trimming collection program in 2021. These programs will now be expanded to all businesses and multifamily complexes, even those with less than 2 cubic yards. As of mid-2022, the City has over 260 businesses recycling their food waste, garden trimmings, and/or wood waste. Each month, commercial customers are diverting approximately 330 tons of organic materials from landfill. All organic materials are taken to the Victor Valley Compost Facility on E. Abbey Lane in Victorville. The material is converted into compost which is then shipped to agricultural users.
For residential customers, the City and Burrtec/Victorville Disposal are working on plans to implement a residential green waste and food waste program. Residents will receive a third (green) barrel for garden trimmings and food scraps. A pilot residential organics collection program began in October 2022, with full City-wide implementation planned for mid-2023. The City has provided a free garden trimming drop-off program for residents since 2020, and that program will continue as well.
For more information on the City Ordinance 2425 and City organics recycling programs, please call the Environmental Programs Division at 760-955-8615.