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Mandatory Recycling and Organics Law: Multifamily Apartment Units

Starting January 2022, all California residents will be required to compost organic waste properly. The law aims to reduce harmful methane emissions from landfills that contribute to climate change and global warming.

Please visit Cal Recycle's website for more information on the new law.

Picture of compost

I'm a tenant, how will this law affect me?

This new law requires you to compost all organic waste.

Your building's property manager is required to provide the building with a labeled compost bin close to the disposal container to discard organic waste. If your apartment building does not have composting service, please contact your property administrator.

Please remember to pay close attention to what you place in the bin. Not everything labeled compostable can be composted. Need more guidance? Visit the Marin Sanitary Service website and use the “Where does it go, Joe?” tool! Even a small amount of trash in the compost bin means that all the material goes to waste.

I own and or manage a multifamily property; what do I have to do to comply?

The new state law mandates that all multifamily buildings must offer composting service to tenants regardless of size.

  1. Subscribe to curbside compost and recycling collection service in addition to garbage
  2. Place color-coded and labeled compost and recycling containers next to all indoor garbage containers (excluding restrooms)
  3. Sort materials into the proper bins.
  4. Periodically inspect bins and provide feedback to employees and contractors about incorrectly placed items.

If your multifamily apartment building has more than 5 units, you must also:

  1. Educate employees, contractors, tenants, and subtenants about the law annually
  2. Inform tenants no later than 14 days after move-in and at least 14 days prior to move-out about the rules

To subscribe to composting service, contact Marin Sanitary Service at (415) 456-2601, Monday through Friday, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.


Frequently Asked Questions

If you can eat it, you can compost it! Remember that almost all organic materials are compostable, not only food waste. See below for examples of what to put in your composting bin:

  • Food and food scraps such as fruit, vegetables, meat, bones, shells, dairy, and leftovers
  • Plant material such as grass, flowers, leaves, branches, and wood
  • Food-soiled paper such as paper towels, napkins, and delivery pizza boxes

What can you compost?

Please visit the Marin Sanitary Service website for a complete list of what should be put into your compost bin.

Marin’s local compost facility WM Earthcare produces high-quality compost to grow organic food. Which is why we CANNOT accept any plastics labeled as compostable or bio-degradable because they take twice as long to break down when compared to natural compostable materials.

Please DO NOT put any of the following items in your green cart for compost:

  • NO compostable or bio-degradable plastics, bags, cups, containers, and utensils
  • NO diapers, pet waste, human waste, and poison oak

What not to compost

Please remember to pay close attention to what you place in the binNot everything labeled compostable can be composted. For more tips, visit the Marin Sanitary Service website and use the “Where does it go, Joe?” tool. Even a small amount of trash in the compost bin means all the material goes to waste!

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