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Our goal is Zero Waste by 2020.
Zero waste means products are designed and used according to the waste reduction hierarchy (prevent waste, reduce and reuse first, then recycle and compost) and principle of highest and best use, so no material goes to landfill or high-temperature destruction. Reaching this goal means sending zero discards to the landfill, instead all discards generated in San Francisco are either reused, recycled, or composted.
Simple actions you can take towards Zero Waste.
- Keep recyclables and compostables out of the black landfill trash bin.
- Buy intelligently, which includes not buying.
- Share your experience - with neighboors, co-workers, friends and family.
- SF Approved lists environmentally friendly products.Beware of green washing.
- Remove the landfill trash bins from your office.
- Use the Signmaker to make your custom zero waste signs.
San Francisco's Path Towards Zero Waste
- 2000: San Francisco sent 872,731 tons of material to the landfill, diverting only 46 percent from the landfill.
- 2009: After implementing the Mandatory Recycling and Composting Ordinance, San Francisco's disposal dropped to 475,800 tons, achieving 78 percent diversion.
- 2010: San Francisco sends 444,000 tons of material to the landfill, achieving 80 percent landfill diversion.
Even though San Francisco has dramatically reduced the amount sent to landfills, half of what is sent can be recycled or composted. What will you do to help keep San Francisco the greenest city in North America?
Half of what is going to the landfill can be recycled or composted in San Francisco. Residents and businesses have learned that reducing waste by composting and recycling more can save money, and the environment. Residents and businesses can go even further than the green/blue/black bin system that is picked up at each property. By using RecycleWhere, everyone can find how to recycle almost everything.
Read our annual zero waste strategic plan here.
San Francisco is habitat for 800,000 people – meeting needs for space to work, play, and learn; for food, water, and air; for community with local flora and fauna. SF Environment provides support for urban agriculture and forestry and green buildings, helping residents and businesses harness environmental opportunities.