California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) 

Local Enforcement Agency Permit Toolbox

Permitting Transfer/Processing Operations and Facilities

This page provides information and resources for permitting a transfer/processing operation or facility.

Please note that other local, State, or federal agencies may also have regulatory authority over solid waste facilities.

What is a transfer/processing facility or operation?

PRC Section 40194: "Solid waste facility" includes a solid waste transfer or processing station, a composting facility, a transformation facility, and a disposal facility.

PRC Section 40200: (a) "Transfer or processing station" or "station" includes those facilities utilized to receive solid wastes, temporarily store, separate, convert, or otherwise process the materials in the solid wastes, or to transfer the solid wastes directly from smaller to larger vehicles for transport, and those facilities utilized for transformation.

(b) "Transfer/processing station" or "station" does not include any of the following: 

(1) A facility, whose principal function is to receive, store, separate, convert, or otherwise process in accordance with State minimum standards, manure. 

(2) A facility, whose principal function is to receive, store, convert, or otherwise process wastes which have already been separated for reuse and are not intended for disposal. 

(3) The operations premises of a duly licensed solid waste handling operator who receives, stores, transfers, or otherwise processes wastes as an activity incidental to the conduct of a refuse collection and disposal business in accordance with regulations adopted pursuant to Section 43309.

Also see specific regulatory definitions in Title 14 of the California Code of Regulations (CCR) Section 17402 and 17402.5

Which permit is required for transfer/processing facilities or operations?

The type of permit required for a transfer station depends on the amount of material being transferred or processed.

Permit Tier Type of Facility or Operation Volume or Tonnage
Full Large Volume Greater than 100 tons per day (TPD)
Standardized No TS/Processing Facilities in this Tier
Registration Medium Volume Greater than 15 TPD or 60 cy/day up to 100 TPD
Direct Transfer Greater than 15 TPD or 60 cy/day up to 150 TPD
Secondary Material Processing Operation Amount of residual material is more than 40 percent by weight of the total source separated material received.
Notification Emergency Transfer Operation Disaster or similar debris, established in a state of emergency
Sealed Container Handles only waste previously placed in tightly closed containers with impermeable covers. Less than 96 hour storage.
Limited Volume Less than 15 TPD or 60 cy/day
Secondary Material Processing Operation Amount of residual material is less than 40 percent by weight of the total source separated material received.
Excluded or Not Subject to Regulations Use the Tier Placement Chart for Transfer/Processing Stations to help determine if an operation is excluded from the requirements of a permit or not subject to the regulations.

See the Permit Tier Placement Chart for a list of all facilities and operations that have been slotted into tiers.

In determining the tonnage of solid waste received by a transfer/processing facility, the following materials shall not be included: materials received by a recycling center located within the facility, and by beverage container recycling programs in accordance with Public Resources Code sections 14511.7, 14518, or 14520, if the recycling activities are separated from the solid waste handling activities by a defined physical barrier or where the activities are otherwise separated in a manner approved by the enforcement agency [CCR Sections 17402(9) and 17402(11)].


Regulations Summary

Regulations and Statutes Pertaining to Transfer/Processing Operations and Facilities
Transfer/Processing Regulatory Requirements Title 14, Chapter 3, Article 6.0
State Minimum Standards Title 14, Chapter 3, Articles 6.1, 6.2, 6.3, and 6.35
Transfer/Processing Plan Title 14, Section 18221.5
Transfer/Processing Report Title 14, Section 18221.6
Definitions (Statute) PRC Sections 40194 and 40200
Definitions (Regulations) Title 14, Section 17402
Definitions Regarding Excluded Activities Title 14, Section 17402.5
Regulatory Tier Requirements Title 14, Chapter 5, Article 3.0

Other Resources

Last updated: December 5, 2017
Permit Toolbox,
Kevin Taylor: (916) 341-6582