Zero plan calls to build as well as expand infrastructure by handling the
discarded materials as commodities to be able to reuse them rather than dispose
them. Also, to conserve those commodities by using waste prevention, recycling,
composting and more technologies that help conserving materials. The plan is to
prevent disposing material and prepare to reuse then. If reusing them was not
an option, then recycle them. Also, recovering the material if recycling was
not applicable and lastly, dispose them at landfills if there were no
The problems this plan addresses
is increased diversion, foremost development of new infrastructure. Implanting
this plan requires the collection of organic materials, which includes yard
trimmings and food scraps. However, in California, adequate infrastructure does
not exist to be able to handle the processing of these additional materials.
Currently, the city operates the Greenery at the Miramar Landfill but then, it
will not be adequate for the projected increase in the organic materials that
will be required processing. Another problem is that the requirement to divert
materials will require special handling that will be difficult to manage.
Managing materials such as sharps, bulbs, batteries and pharmaceuticals is very
costly and are dangerous when being placed in refuse and recycling containers
or illegally disposed.
goal of Zero Waste planning is 75% diversion of waste from landfills by 2020
and Zero Waste by 2040. Staff is additionally targeting the goal of 90%
diversion by 2035 as currently proposed in the City’s draft
Climate Action Plan. Today, the city faces 50% diversion of waste from
legislation that is important for driving current level of diversion is the
Assembly Bill (AB) 2020, ‘the
California Beverage Container Recycling and Litter Reduction Act, established
California Redemption Value, a refundable deposit on certain types of beverage
(AB) 939, ‘the Integrated Waste Management Act of 1989, set
forth a requirement that all local California jurisdictions achieve a rate of
50% diversion by the year 2000 and each year thereafter, and submit an annual
update to Cal Recycle for approval of programs designed to divert materials
from disposal to the maximum extent feasible, or face fines of up to $10,000
per day.’ (AB) 939 will be important to reach the milestone
because it requires to develop a source reduction and recycling element
demonstrating how they will achieve the mandated diversion goals.
only 190,000 of the 289,000 City customers have greenery collection and of that
only 30,000 have automated carts. Expanding yard trimmings collection to all
City serviced residential customers and switching to automated carts, would
divert 20,000 tons. This is key to achieving ZWP goals. Use of automated carts
will allow for the potential addition of food scraps to the greenery collection
and demolition debris constitutes more than 23% of the commercial waste stream.
Increasing the C&D Ordinance requirement from 50% to 65% diversion appears to be a readily reachable goal, given that mixed
C&D recycling facilities servicing the City of San Diego have been
certified at 65% by staff for at least the past two years. This is
projected to result in 2,000 tons of additional diversion. Staff anticipates
bringing C&D Ordinance revisions forward to City Council in January 2016.
an effective Zero Waste approach considers that the producers of waste should
be responsible for costs of disposal, and indeed for the total life cycle of a
product, the ZWP advocates support of education, policies and laws that promote
the sharing of the financial responsibility for hard to handle materials with
the product manufacturers and their distributors.
residential recycling and trash service has a cost of approximately $47 million
dollars per year that is currently funded by the City’s General Fund (GF) and fees collected from the commercial waste stream. Approximately
23 percent of disposed material in the City is collected under the People’s Ordinance. As a
result, funding current and future waste related programming involves an
interwoven fee structure that presents several challenges for the City’s discards management system.