4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

San Diego County cities hustle to digest green trash

Del Mar to switch to EDCO?

The Escondido anaerobic digester will convert organic waste to fertilizer for farms and natural gas for vehicles.
The Escondido anaerobic digester will convert organic waste to fertilizer for farms and natural gas for vehicles.

Del Mar doesn't have food waste pickup. But by next year, it will have to. And restaurants, hard hit by the pandemic, are sweating the new costs, from dumpsters to rodent control.

State regulations aimed at keeping organic waste out of landfills, along with the potent methane gas it emits, will require residents and businesses to recycle food scraps, landscape leftovers, non-hazardous wood waste and compostable paper.

The city will have to provide organics collections to all residents and businesses.

The small city now sends 3,200 tons of organic waste to the landfill each year, with yard waste the most prevalent type. But the food portion amounts to 3/4 of a ton of waste per person, not counting the fairgrounds.

"That's just an enormous amount," said Jessica Toth, executive director at Solana Center for Environmental Innovation, who is working with Del Mar to figure out how to meet state mandates on organics recycling.

Del Mar is out of compliance with a 2016 organics recycling law that applies to large commercial generators. Every year since the law took effect, it has applied to ever smaller businesses.

It's not just a Del Mar problem, according to Clem Brown, the city's sustainability manager. In fact, no city in San Diego is recycling its organic waste in full compliance with state regulations, he told the city council last week.

"There is a real lack of infrastructure to process the region's organic waste stream right now. Finding local organics recycling options will be critical."

Since the city's contract with its hauler, Waste Management, pre-dates new organics regulations, it doesn't facilitate full compliance with the state laws.

Waste Management has looked at potential future options in Poway and Lakeside and composting facilities in Otay or Oceanside - but "each has issues," Brown said.

Neighboring cities, however, are already finding their way. A new facility on the cusp of opening in Escondido will process organic waste, using an anaerobic digester to convert it to fertilizer for farms and natural gas for vehicles. Twelve cities are signed on.

The digester is the first of its kind in San Diego, Brown said.

Businesses and sustainability advocates are asking Del Mar not to extend their contract with Waste Management when it expires in June 2022, since it lacks local facilities for organic recycling, and must haul waste to Orange County.

They're hoping the city can get bids from EDCO and other haulers, which might provide lower rates.

Ann Feeney, vice chair of the Sustainability Advisory Board, commented that Solana Beach and Encinitas are among the cities that recently started residential curbside organic waste recycling and will soon start commercial organic waste recycling - because EDCO, their hauler, began building its anaerobic digester a few years ago.

"We need to be sure our next waste hauling contract will include sufficient organic waste recycling" to meet state law.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Irish coffee meets mezcal at Metl Bar Creamery & Cafe

“Warning to the public — be careful when sipping!”
Next Article

It’s hard for me to leave Imperial Beach

There were three dolphins behind us, and two on each side of us.
The Escondido anaerobic digester will convert organic waste to fertilizer for farms and natural gas for vehicles.
The Escondido anaerobic digester will convert organic waste to fertilizer for farms and natural gas for vehicles.

Del Mar doesn't have food waste pickup. But by next year, it will have to. And restaurants, hard hit by the pandemic, are sweating the new costs, from dumpsters to rodent control.

State regulations aimed at keeping organic waste out of landfills, along with the potent methane gas it emits, will require residents and businesses to recycle food scraps, landscape leftovers, non-hazardous wood waste and compostable paper.

The city will have to provide organics collections to all residents and businesses.

The small city now sends 3,200 tons of organic waste to the landfill each year, with yard waste the most prevalent type. But the food portion amounts to 3/4 of a ton of waste per person, not counting the fairgrounds.

"That's just an enormous amount," said Jessica Toth, executive director at Solana Center for Environmental Innovation, who is working with Del Mar to figure out how to meet state mandates on organics recycling.

Del Mar is out of compliance with a 2016 organics recycling law that applies to large commercial generators. Every year since the law took effect, it has applied to ever smaller businesses.

It's not just a Del Mar problem, according to Clem Brown, the city's sustainability manager. In fact, no city in San Diego is recycling its organic waste in full compliance with state regulations, he told the city council last week.

"There is a real lack of infrastructure to process the region's organic waste stream right now. Finding local organics recycling options will be critical."

Since the city's contract with its hauler, Waste Management, pre-dates new organics regulations, it doesn't facilitate full compliance with the state laws.

Waste Management has looked at potential future options in Poway and Lakeside and composting facilities in Otay or Oceanside - but "each has issues," Brown said.

Neighboring cities, however, are already finding their way. A new facility on the cusp of opening in Escondido will process organic waste, using an anaerobic digester to convert it to fertilizer for farms and natural gas for vehicles. Twelve cities are signed on.

The digester is the first of its kind in San Diego, Brown said.

Businesses and sustainability advocates are asking Del Mar not to extend their contract with Waste Management when it expires in June 2022, since it lacks local facilities for organic recycling, and must haul waste to Orange County.

They're hoping the city can get bids from EDCO and other haulers, which might provide lower rates.

Ann Feeney, vice chair of the Sustainability Advisory Board, commented that Solana Beach and Encinitas are among the cities that recently started residential curbside organic waste recycling and will soon start commercial organic waste recycling - because EDCO, their hauler, began building its anaerobic digester a few years ago.

"We need to be sure our next waste hauling contract will include sufficient organic waste recycling" to meet state law.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Vaccine skeptic gets two jabs at her critic

Abraham Lincoln crash report questioned
Next Article

The Carpetbaggers part two: Elizabeth Ashley makes her screen debut

Of all the women who figure into Jonas’ life, she is the only one who isn’t a prostitute.
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close