California’s 75 Percent Initiative: Defining the Future
The Legislature and Governor Brown set an ambitious goal of 75 percent recycling, composting or source reduction of solid waste by 2020. Instead of focusing primarily on local diversion, the law calls for the state and the Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) to take a statewide approach to decreasing California’s reliance on landfills. CalRecycle has been tasked by the Legislature to examine how extensions of existing efforts, as well as new strategies, can be combined to reach that policy goal.
Fall 2013 Update
To keep stakeholders up to date on how we’ve integrated their feedback into the revised concepts for the statewide strategy, an update was published in October 2013 (PDF, 2.3 MB). It includes a refined concept list and summaries of stakeholder comments on the May 2012 concepts. This update also reflects ongoing staff work and collaborations with our sister agencies to move forward waste management recommendations that meet integrated environmental, energy, and economic policy objectives. Six focus areas rise to the top at this juncture:
- Moving Organics Out of the Landfill
- Continuing Reform of the Beverage Container Recycling Program
- Expanding the Recycling/Manufacturing Infrastructure: Permitting/Compliance Assistance and Financing
- Exploring New Models for State and Local Funding of Materials Management Programs
- Promoting State Procurement of Postconsumer Recycled Content Products
- Promoting Extended Producer Responsibility
We look forward to hearing any “new” ideas you may have that are not already included in the concepts.
Statewide Strategy for Reaching the 75 Percent Goal
To facilitate the development of that statewide strategy, CalRecycle developed a discussion document in May 2012 and held workshops for stakeholder input. The concepts represent a snapshot in time and summarize programs that are currently being implemented, as well as potential new ways to tackle problematic waste streams. Many are familiar because they call for extensions of existing programs. Some involve ongoing cooperative efforts with other agencies, and others require authorizing legislation or regulatory changes.
The draft organized the existing efforts and new ideas into “focus areas.” For each Focus Area, there are links for ongoing staff activities and stakeholder workshops related to particular concepts. Check the list of upcoming workshops below or past workshops.
CalRecycle’s recommendations will be presented as a report to the Legislature in January 2014. The report will reflect strategies already being implemented, as well as any that CalRecycle proposes to reach the statewide goal.
Comments or Questions?
You can reach the CalRecycle team by email at 75Percent@calrecycle.ca.gov.
Workshops and Updates
- December 10, 2013 (Sacramento-Cal/EPA Building). Workshop co-sponsored by CalRecycle with HF&H Consultants to explore managing rates related to collection, processing and disposal of discards.
- Packaging-related CalRecycle workshops to explore biobased and degradable plastics and share ideas to increase source reduction and recovery of packaging in California, respectively.
- Sign up for the 75 Percent Initiative listserv for email notification of workshops regarding this initiative.
- Follow CalRecycle activities and workshops on the focus area webpages.
- Subscribe to other listservs for updates on specific focus areas.
- Update on AB 341 Legislative Report: Statewide Strategies to Achieve The 75 Percent Goal by 2020 (PDF, 2.3 MB). October 2013 update summarizes stakeholder comments and presents revised concept list based on that feedback and ongoing staff work.
- AB 341’s 75 Percent Goal and Potential New Recycling Jobs in California by 2020 (PDF, 875 KB). Report reviews prior studies and, using current disposal tonnage and exports, forecasts job creation (manufacturing and collection/processing sectors) as a result of achieving 75 percent goal. (Background for April 16, 2013 presentation).
- California Exports of Recyclable Materials (2012) (PDF, 1.4 MB). Report provides detail regarding recyclables exported from California’s ports, the amount shipped, and their value in 2012. (Background for July 16, 2013 presentation, PDF, 788 KB).
- Statewide Progress Presentation (PDF, 456 KB). A presentation given at the June 18, 2013 Monthly Meeting for stakeholder discussion. The presentation reviews statewide per capita disposal, diversion, and recycling rates for calendar year 2012.
- Creating New Jobs through Increased Recycling, Processing and Remanufacturing (PDF, 1.4 MB). April 16, 2013 presentation reviewed prior state, regional and national studies to forecast future California jobs.
- California’s New Goal: 75 Percent Recycling (PDF, 1.1 MB). May 2012 discussion document of program concepts organized into focus areas. The concept summaries are “in development” and do not encompass all the nuances, variations or details needed to reach the statewide goal.
- What Does 75 Percent Recycling Mean? (PDF, 885 KB). Presentation from May 14 and 21, 2012 workshops.
- The Why and How of Measurement for a 75 Percent Statewide Recycling Goal (PDF, 1.0 MB). Presentation from September 19, 2012 workshop.
- AB 341 (Chapter 476, Statutes of 2011). Statute that directed CalRecycle to examine existing efforts and propose strategies to reach the 75 percent goal.
- Stakeholder comments and letters.