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Composte your Green Waste

Zero Waste through the Pandemic:

Jun 1, 2020

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Tips for Handling Our Recyclables, Compost, and More

By Sloane Pagal, Zero Waste Program Manager

During these challenging times, while most people are working from home, sanitation workers are still out in the field providing essential services such as garbage, recycling, and organics pick-up. All curbside collection services in Sonoma County continue to operate normally, although temporary routing changes may result in drivers arriving earlier or later than usual.

Zero Waste Sonoma staff have compiled a list of suggestions for residents to do their part to minimize disease transmission while maintaining a small waste footprint.

Hold Off On Spring Cleaning

Although many residents are using this extra time at home to clean house, please wait to dispose or donate items until normal business operations resume.

You may prepare and organize your things, but going to the Household Hazardous Waste facility or donation stores is not essential and would violate the shelter in place mandate. Items that have been in your home for this long can stay there for a couple more months.

Please remember that batteries, paint, fluorescent lightbulbs, medication, motor oil, and other household hazardous waste (HHW) products require special treatment and are illegal to discard in the garbage.

For more information, visit our website to learn how and where to properly dispose of these and other materials. Residents may request an oil filter drainer and oil rag to be delivered to their doorstep by calling the Eco-Desk at (707) 565-3375.

In addition, curbside oil pick-up remains available through all waste haulers.


TENTATIVE EVENTS: https://zerowastesonoma.gov/calendar

Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) Collection Events

• June 9, 2020 in Healdsburg 

• June 16, 2020 in Santa Rosa, W

• June 23, 2020, in Bodega Bay, 4 - 8pm Tues - ThursBy appointment only call(707) 795-2025/toll-free(877) 747-1870 option 3.EMAIL: TOXICSDISPOSAL@CLEANHARBORS.COM
Please provide the following information when calling or sending an e-mail: name, phone number, date and location of collection event, and preferred appointment time. Appointment line staffed M-F from 8am to 2:30pm or leave a message. Please make an appointment at least 24 hours prior to the collection event. Once the appointment request is confirmed, you will receive a confirmation with the address of the collection event.Events have a limit of 80 appointments.

* June 26 - 27, 2020 in Sea Ranch, 9am - 1 pm @39225 CA 1, Gualala INFO: 707-468-9710 HAZMobile events are FREE for residents. Small, qualifying businesses may make an appointment and pay a disposal fess. https://mendorecycle.org/HazardousWaste/HHWDropoffFacilities

• June 30, 2020 in Rohnert Park, 4 - 8 pm Tues - Thurs.By appointment only call (707) 795-2025/toll-free (877) 747-1870 option 3.EMAIL: TOXICSDISPOSAL@CLEANHARBORS.COM
Please provide the following information when calling or sending an e-mail: name, phone number, date and location of collection event, and preferred appointment time. Appointment line staffed M-F from 8am to 2:30pm or leave a message. Please make an appointment at least 24 hours prior to the collection event. Once the appointment request is confirmed, you will receive a confirmation with the address of the collection event. Events have a limit of 80 appointments.

HHW Facility for Residents is open during regular hours on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays

Mattress Recycling Events • July 11, 2020 in Petaluma

E-waste Recycling Events • July 10-12, 2020 in Petaluma


(You Can Still) Avoid Single-Use Items

Sonoma County and many other cities throughout California have longstanding bans on single-use plastic bags, but some local governments are suspending these bans in order to slow the spread of COVID-19. Although there is little evidence that reusable bags are contributing to the spread of the novel coronavirus, most grocery stores now only permit customers to use single-use plastic or paper bags.

However, you can still use reusable bags; just leave them in your vehicle, or if you don’t drive to the store, keep them in a backpack or handbag, and ask the bagger to place groceries directly into the cart at checkout. When you exit the store, transfer items from the cart into your bags. As an extra precaution, wash your bags between uses.

Similarly, if you decide to order food and beverages for pickup or delivery, remember to refuse single-use utensils, straws, and condiments and use what you have at home instead.

Prepare Your Produce

It is important, now more than ever, that we thoroughly wash our hands with soap and water before handling any food. Remember to also rinse fresh fruits and veggies before eating them, but do not use soap to wash produce as it can cause stomachaches.

As usual, dispose of all stickers in the trash before placing food scraps into the green cart for composting.

If you have issues with odor or pests, keep your food scraps loose in a container in the fridge or freezer. On collection day, transfer them to your green curbside cart. Remove excess liquids and reduce odor by lining the bottom of the collection container with a paper egg carton.

Continue to Recycle Right

Studies suggest that it’s possible for the virus to live on plastic for two to three days, and cardboard for up to 24 hours.

Despite a low transmission risk through contact with recyclables, wash your hands after rolling out the curbside cart, and wipe down cart lids and handles with disinfectant regularly.

The virus is primarily transmitted through droplets from coughing or sneezing. This means that on the small chance the virus is present on a can or bottle, it will not fly into the air by itself.

To reduce risk even further, follow the same guidelines for preparing recyclables by giving them a rinse and allowing them to drain and dry before sorting or placing them in your cart. Remember to flatten cardboard, keep lids on containers, and do not place “tanglers” such as plastic bags/film, hoses, or string lights into the recycling cart, because they tangle machinery at the sorting facilities.

Tightly Bag Your Trash

Waste such as used masks, gloves, tissues, and disinfectant wipes should always go into the garbage.

Make sure to tightly tie them up in garbage bags. These items are light and can be carried away by the wind, or end up in the streets and waterways. On the other hand, do not bag recyclables or your food scraps. Keep them loose in the cart with the lid closed.

For more information on recycling, composting, and disposal, visit  www.zerowastesonoma.gov.

The most up to date list of Zero Waste Sonoma program changes and event cancellations due to COVID-19 can be found onhttps://zerowastesonoma.gov/covid-19



BULKY ITEM PICKUP

Mattresses, appliances, furniture, and electronics that cannot fit into the garbage cart or that need special handling will be picked up by appointment.

This service is available for residential hauling company customers for a fee or at no cost.

In addition, some communities offer FREE Curbside Cleanup Events

INFO: zerowastesonoma.gov/recycle-dispose/residents/bulky-item-collection.

Recology Sonoma Marin recology.com/recology-sonoma-marin (800) 243-0291

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