Jul 12 - San Diego Looks to Bring Recycling to Everyone

California has done much in the last decade to increase recycling rates, but some residents in San Diego are getting frustrated for not having easy access to recycling, namely apartment residents. Rob Davis of Voice of San Diego reports that the city officials in San Diego are looking to draft an ordinance that would provide recycling to multi-family dwellings and offices that don't currently have it.

In this large warehouse, green and brown glass bottles are bouncing through a sorting system with a thunderous crash. Above, workers standing atop blue crates separate Pennzoil bottles from milk jugs. In a far corner, a backhoe is sorting through 20-foot stacks of cardboard.

But for all the aluminum and glass and paper here at the Miramar facility that sorts San Diego's recyclables, something is missing: A few tons' worth.

Some West Coast cities are known for their pioneering recycling policies, making recycling bins universally available and sometimes fining residents who fail to use them. But San Diego doesn't offer recycling pickup to more than 100,000 units in apartment complexes, condos and multi-family dwellings. Offices also aren't included.

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More than half of CA residents have access to curbside recycling, but a majority of the 24% housing units in the state considered as "multi-family dwellings" do not, as evidenced by a 15% diversion rate in such complexes.

CAW currently supports AB 2206 (Montañez), which would require the California Integrated Waste Management Board (CIWMB) and owners and managers of multifamily dwellings to provide information and assistance to residents about recycling to achieve higher recycling levels in multi-family dwellings.

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