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San Diego Ordinance Would Require Businesses To Increase Recycling

San Diego County businesses that produce more than four cubic yards of garbage per week would be required to recycle more of their waste under an ordinance tentatively approved today by the Board of Supervisors.

Under the current law, single-family homes, multifamily housing complexes and businesses larger than 20,000 square feet and located in unincorporated areas are required to recycle certain materials. In 2011, they helped divert 60 percent of solid waste from landfills, according to the county.

The new plan would change the requirement to businesses that produce four cubic yards or more of waste per week, the same as the state standard. Hospitality and residential provisions would be unchanged.

County staffers wrote that adoption of the ordinance would enable the county government to meet state recycling standards, conserve landfill space and encourage investment in "the recycling and waste reduction industry.''

The supervisors are scheduled consider final adoption of the ordinance next month.

"I think this is not only environmentally sensitive, but it's business- friendly, and I think that is a great step in the right direction,'' Supervisor Dave Roberts said.

A bill passed by the Legislature in 2011 calls for 75 percent of solid waste around California to be steered away from landfills and recycled or

reused in some way. The measure also requires local jurisdictions to develop commercial recycling programs.