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It’s a fact: Reducing the amount of garbage you throw away conserves natural resources and preserves the environment around us. But, did you know, California state law mandates that we reduce the amount of trash we dump into landfills?

In 1989, the California Integrated Waste Management Act was passed to encourage recycling. AB 939, as it is commonly known, required California cities and counties to reduce the amount of garbage going to landfills by 50% by the year 2000, or face penalties of up to $10,000 per day! The best way to reduce the amount of material being buried is to increase the amount of material being recycled. To date, several municipalities have been fined for non-compliance. Since that landmark legislation, several other laws have been put into effect including the Bottle Law, the Bag Law, the Universal Waste Law and the E-Waste Law among others.

Kern County Public Works has implemented a variety of programs to increase waste recycling. Residents and businesses can avail themselves to a voluntary curbside recycling, community drop-off recycling, buy-back recycling and disposal site recycling programs. Not all programs are available in all communities. Check out the Kern County Recycling Guide to check out the recycling program available in your community. In addition to the ongoing programs, the County supports seasonal programs as well including the Christmas Tree Recycling Program.