San Diego’s new organics recycling kicks into high gear this week with green waste bin deliveries, outreach

City of San Diego homes now need three bins for city trash collection for landfill trash, recyclables and green waste.
City of San Diego homes now need three bins for city trash collection for landfill trash, recyclables and green waste.

The phased approach will send bins to neighborhoods based on what day their trash is picked up, starting with Wednesday homes


San Diego will start delivering green recycling bins and kitchen pails to thousands of city trash customers Wednesday as part of a comprehensive effort to comply with a new state law requiring recycling of yard trimmings and food scraps.

The city is also delivering kitchen pails to help residents comply with a new state law requiring food and yard waste recycling.

Dec. 10, 2022

Homes in ZIP codes 92102 and 92113 will receive their bins and pails first, as part of a citywide rollout that will include delivery to about 15,000 addresses a week during the next several months.

The first wave of bins is going to homes with Wednesday trash pickup. Homes with Thursday trash pickup will get bins in March and April, and the process will continue until all bins are delivered by August.

“We are so proud and excited to bring this game-changing service to San Diegans,” said Renee Robertson, director of the city’s Environmental Services Department. “Recycling organic waste is the single easiest and fastest thing an individual can do to fight climate change.”

Robertson said city employees are working diligently and carefully to ease the transition.

“Delivering nearly 270,000 bins is a monumental task that we are taking very seriously,” she said.

City officials have launched an aggressive education and outreach campaign to help residents understand their obligations under the new law. Residents must separate out food waste and food-soiled paper products from their trash.

In addition to the new bins, each customer will receive a plastic kitchen pail so that food scraps can be kept under sinks or elsewhere in the kitchen until customers are ready to take that waste outside to their green recycling bin.

The city is scheduled to begin levying fines in January 2024 for non-compliance with the new law, SB 1383.

The state law aims to fight climate change by reducing how much methane gas gets emitted by landfills from decaying organic material like food and yard waste that could instead have been composted for reuse.

The new bins and trucks will handle service at city homes that receive no-fee trash and recycling service. Those are mostly single-family homes but also include some condos and apartments where individual units have street access.

The new state law also requires green recycling at businesses, apartment complexes and condominiums in San Diego that are served by private haulers instead of city trucks.

Private haulers are expected to pass the cost of the new green recycling service on to their customers in the form of higher monthly fees.

For delivery schedule, a list of what can go in the green bin and more information, residents are encouraged to visit