More businesses required to recycle under new ordinance

More businesses required to recycle under new ordinance
Baled recyclables stacked on the ground at a local business. Businesses that produce 4 cubic yards of waste or more per week must recycle under a new ordinance from the San Diego County Board of Supervisors. Photo courtesy of the Allan Company

COAST CITIES — Businesses that produce 4 cubic yards of waste or more per week will soon be required to recycle. 

The San Diego Board of Supervisors introduced an ordinance expanding commercial recycling last week. On Feb. 9, the board is expected to adopt the measure.

Under the county’s current plan, businesses that are larger than 20,000 square feet have to recycle certain materials. The new ordinance changes the requirement to follow a 2011 statewide law, which mandates businesses that produce 4 cubic yard cards of waste or more per week must recycle.

Four cubic yards is the size of a large dumpster.

According to Michael Wonsidler, a recycling specialist with San Diego County, the new ordinance will only affect businesses in unincorporated areas like Rancho Santa Fe.

He said 10 of the 19 cities in San Diego County, including Encinitas and Carlsbad, have already passed similar recycling ordinances to comply with California law.

“I expect more cities to evaluate their recycling goals in the near future and come into compliance,” Wonsidler said.

The state has also set a goal of diverting 75 percent of solid waste from the landfill by 2020.

Unincorporated areas achieved a 60 percent diversion rate in 2011.

According the Board of Supervisors’ staff report, the ordinance will assist the county in meeting state-mandated goal requirements, conserving landfill capacity and encouraging investment in the recycling and waste reduction industry.

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