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Organics works best in modern browsers like Firefox, Safari, Chrome, or Internet Explorer 8. All are free to download and will greatly improve your internet experience. Reducing and recycling organic waste is a top priority for Californians and us here in Santa Barbara County. Cutting back on food waste and putting the correct materials in our green containers are important ways to divert waste from the landfill. Learn more about green container programs in your area, backyard composting, food waste reduction, and other ways to reduce or recycle organic waste in this section. Businesses should also get involved!

Organics Are a Big Deal

As of January 2022, Californians are required to divert all organic waste from the landfill, including food scraps, yard waste, food-soiled paper products, and other organic materials. This law is called Senate Bill 1383, or SB 1383. Organic waste buried in landfills releases methane, a powerful greenhouse gas and a major contributor to climate change. Businesses are also required to recycle organic waste, and some are required to donate edible food.

You can learn all about SB 1383 and how it affects Santa Barbara County by clicking here. Luckily, Santa Barbara County and our local cities have been working hard for years to recycle organics through many different programs. You can learn more about them and how to get involved below.

Organics at a Glance

Here in Santa Barbara County, residents and businesses can take advantage of numerous local programs to reduce and recycle organic waste. Check out what we’re doing below:

  • Residents and businesses in the unincorporated Lompoc and Santa Maria Valleys will now place all of their food scraps and food-soiled paper, along with yard waste, in their green container. Everything in the green container is now composted at a local facility and then used in local agriculture.
  • The County Public Works Department’s ReSource Center is pulling organic waste out of the trash from the South Coast and Santa Ynez Valley and composting it on-site. This process is also generating electricity and powering local homes.
  • Residents in the Santa Ynez Valley and South Coast should continue putting only yard waste in your green container. This material is ground into mulch, which is available for community use. Please keep food scraps out of your green container in these areas.
  • With our Home Composting program, residents can learn all about the benefits of composting, attend a free composting workshop, download our Composting ABC’s booklet, and purchase a discounted compost bin.
  • Our Food Forward section provides helpful information on preventing food waste and donating edible food.
  • Businesses can learn more about commercial organic waste collection services and edible food recovery. Organic waste collection can save your business money! You may also receive tax deductions when you donate edible food to local 501(c)3 non-profits.

What Else Is In This Section?

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