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Get to Know Your San Francisco Trash

I made the mistake once of putting a pizza box into my recycling.  It was an accident, but I got a nasty note from the trashman complete with a threat that they’ll never pick up my trash again if I dare make that mistake again. 


Coming soon though, you’ll get more than a nasty note.  San Francisco is making it law that you will have to seperate your trash starting October 21st.


The idea is for SF to reduce it’s waste drastically, and I’m honestly all over it. 


The San Francisco Accosiation of Realtors was kind enough to share the details of the new law with us and explain the responsibility of homeowners and businesses.


In June, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved, and Mayor Gavin Newsom signed into law, legislation that requires all persons and businesses located in San Francisco to separate recyclables, compostables and landfill trash and participate in recycling and composting programs. The new law takes effect on October 21.

The new law contains the following mandate:

“All persons in San Francisco shall source separate their refuse into recyclables, compostables and trash, and place each type of refuse in a separate container designated for disposal of that type of refuse. No person may mix recyclables, compostables or trash, or deposit refuse in a collection container designated for another type of refuse, except as otherwise provided….”

The legislation was proposed by Mayor Gavin Newson who cited the California Integrated Waste Management Act of 1989 which requires cities and counties to reduce, reuse and recycle (including composting) solid waste generated in the State to the maximum extent feasible before any incineration or landfill disposal of waste, to conserve water, energy and other natural resources. The Act mandates that each local jurisdiction in the State divert 50 percent of discarded materials from landfill.

Owners or managers of multi-family or commercial properties will be required to provide information and/or training for new tenants, employees and contractors, including janitors, on how to source separate recyclables, compostables and trash, and will be required to re-educate tenants, employees and contractors at least once a year.

The fine for any violation at a dwelling or commercial property that generates less than one cubic yard of refuse per week may not initially exceed $100.

If the Director of Public Health causes a dwelling or commercial property to be inspected to determine whether the owner has complied with the ordinance, the owner of the dwelling or commercial property will be required to pay an inspection fee equal to $167 per hour of staff time spent during the inspection.

Both Sunset Scavenger and Golden Gate Disposal and Recycling will deliver a larger recycling cart, a composting cart or a kitchen pail at no additional cost. Call Sunset at 415-330-1300 or Golden Gate at 415-626-4000.