AB 341 Mandatory Recycling

AB 341 Mandatory Recycling
On July 1, 2012, Governor Brown signed legislation AB 341 which increases the State of California’s waste diversion goal from 50% - 75%. This state legislation also includes mandatory commercial and multi-family recycling to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

All commercial accounts that generate more than 4 yards per week of solid waste and multi-family complexes with 5 units or more are required to have a recycling program in place.

The Basics of AB 341:
  • Sets a state-wide 75% waste diversion goal.
  • Requires mandatory commercial recycling by certain business and public entities.
  • Changes the due date of state agency annual report.
  • Modifies the process of amending Non-Disposal facility Elements.
  • Modifies enforcement agency notification requirements for modifications to a solid waste facility.
The 75% Diversion Goal
  • Achieve 75% diversion goal by the year 2020.
  • Requires CalRecyle to provide a report to the Legislature by July 1, 2014 to identify strategies to achieve that goal.
  • CalRecycle shall not establish or enforce a diversion rate on a jurisdiction that exceeds the current 50% diversion rate.
Mandatory Commercial Recycling:
Commercial businesses and public entities that generate 4 cubic yards or more of solid waste per week and multi-family complexes with 5 units or more are subject to mandatory recycling, and are required to do 1 of the following:
  • Source separate recyclable materials from the solid waste and either self-haul or arrange for separate collection of the recyclables
  • Subscribe to a service that includes mixed waste processing that yields diversion results comparable to source separation
Other Key Information
  • Jurisdictions that have an existing commercial recycling program that includes all of the elements listed above are not required to implement a new or expanded program.
  • The state will not be taking enforcement action on businesses that do not comply with requirements, nor will jurisdictions be required to enforce them.
  • You do not need to adopt a local mandatory ordinance or enforce mandatory recycling.
  • You do need to start implementing your education, outreach, and monitoring by July 1, 2012, but you can phase in the components of your program.
Tips to Maximize Your Success: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
  • Reduce: Which may help lower your monthly trash bill. Think before printing a document. Email information instead of using a hard copy. By reducing the amount of material going into your trash bins and increasing the level of recycling, you will have immediate impact on your monthly trash rate.
  • Reuse: Encourage employees and tenants to re-use. Use paper already printed on 1 side for notes or printing drafts on the other. Bring your lunch to work in reusable containers. Drink coffee out of mug or bring a travel mug with you to the coffee shop.
  • Recycle: Place a desk-side recycling container (an empty copier paper carton will suffice) at every desk. Collect paper, bottles, cans, and cardboard/paperboard from all your employees or tenants. Recycle old printer cartridges using mail-black containers from the supplier. Collect batteries, compact fluorescent bulbs and tubes, along with e-waste for convenient recycling by mail. Visit Waste Management Think Green From Home for additional details.
Where to Go for More Information
California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle):