Malibu mandates organic waste recycling in effort to reduce the city's carbon footprint

The city of Malibu announced Friday a new mandatory organic waste recycling program designed to reduce the city's carbon footprint.

Businesses must begin organic waste recycling by Oct. 1, while residents will begin participating starting Jan. 1, 2022.

Composting of household waste: tray for organic waste. Vegetable peelings and waste in a bin. (Photo by: Andia/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

"Malibu is committed to protecting the environment and doing our part to address climate change. This is a global crisis and threat to coastal communities like Malibu, as we face the danger of rising sea levels and wildfires," said Mayor Paul Grisanti. "I hope that all homeowners and businesses will see the need for this move and join in the effort to protect the environment and our community."

The program meets mandatory requirements established under California Senate Bill 1383 to reduce the amount of organic waste disposed in landfills. The bill aims to reduce organic waste disposal by 75% and rescue at least 20% of edible food by 2025.

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Food scraps make up half of what Californians send to landfills, releasing methane and other greenhouses gasses that contribute to climate change. Reducing those pollutants and encouraging edible food rescue and composting are considered some of the fastest ways to combat the climate crisis.

Businesses and multifamily residential dwellings (five units or more) must start organic recycling or have an approved exemption waiver by October. Commercial edible food generators and grocery stores are required to participate in edible food recovery programs by 2022, and restaurants greater than 5,000 square feet and events with more than 2,000 attendees per day must participate by 2024.

Residents will automatically receive organic waste recycling service starting on Jan. 1, and will be responsible for sorting organics in the appropriate cart.

Additional information about organic waste recycling and waiver applications can be found on

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