California Recycling Laws

Here are a few of the major recycling laws that have left a major impact on recycling in California.

CA Integrated Waste Management Act of 1989 · California Beverage Container Recycling and Litter Reduction Act · Electronic Waste Recycling Act · Cell Phone Recycling Act of 2004 · Rechargeable Battery Recycling Act · Recycled Newsprint Act


CA Integrated Waste Management Act of 1989 (AB 939)

AB 939 by then Assembly Member Sher passed in 1989, establishing a new direction for waste management in the state with the creation of the CA Integrated Waste Management Board, and setting up a new mandate for local jurisdictions to meet diversion goals.

AB 939 mandated local jurisdictions to meet solid waste diversion goals of 25 percent by 1995 and 50 percent by 2000. The CIWMB would determine this diversion by looking at the base-year solid waste generation (waste normally disposed of into landfills) to determine the amount of solid waste diverted. To help in the increase of diversion rates, each jurisdiction was required to create an Integrated Waste Management Plan that looked at recycling programs, purchasing of recycled products and waste minimization.

California Beverage Container Recycling and Litter Reduction Act aka "The Bottle Bill" (AB 2020)

  • AB 3056 (Hancock, 2006) update and FAQs from Dept. of Conservation.

E-Waste Recycling Laws

  • Electronic Waste Recycling Act (SB 20) 
  • California has an Advanced Recovery Fee system where consumers pay a fee at the point of purchase of covered devices that are used for a statewide recycling fund. The States uses the fees to reimburse recyclers and collectors who submit receipts showing they have collected covered devices from state residents.
    • Cell Phone Recycling Act of 2004 (AB 2901)

      On July 1, 2006, the CAW sponsored electronic waste recycling law went into effect in California. AB 2901 now requires retailers to take-back, at no cost to the consumer, to recycle or reuse old cell phones.
    • Rechargeable Battery Recycling Act (AB 1125)

      The act, which went into effect July 1, 2006, requires retailers that sell rechargeable batteries to take-back and recycle them. Modeled after the same take-back concept of the cell phone bill, this legislation creates convenience and incentive for consumers.

    Recycled Newsprint Act (AB 1305)
    Passed in 1989, AB 1305 (Killea) requires major newsprint consumers, such as newspapers, to use 25% recycled newsprint immediately, and 50% by the year 2000. Currently, at least 50 percent of the newsprint used by printers and publishers in California must contain a minimum of 40 percent postconsumer paper fiber. The CIWMB oversees these mandates and receive reports annually about the amount of recycled-content newsprint that is used.


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Great site

Hello i am shawn lee.Thanks for sharing this wonderful and interesting topic.Thank you for your site, I have found here much useful information.In 1989, AB 939 established the current organization, structure and
mission of CalRecycle. The purpose was to direct attention to the
increasing waste stream and decreasing landfill capacity, and to mandate
a reduction of waste being disposed. Jurisdictions were required to
meet diversion goals of 25% by 1995 and 50% by the year 2000. A disposal
reporting system was established with CalRecycle oversight, facility
and program planning was required, and cities and counties began to
address their waste problems.I hope you are satisfied my comment Take care.



shawn lee


Such an interestin post. We

Such an interestin post. We really have to follow government's agenda on recycling. People seem to have this odd fearfulness of recycling – like if they don't waste the leftover stuff from what they use, somehow something will go wrong. Believe it or not, in some spots it can pay to recycle. For instance, Washington State will in fact pay for raw resources, like aluminum.

Our waste management had a

Our waste management had a counterclaim filed after they stopped picking up a few peoples recyclables when those people had paid.