Listed below are recent posts across all of CalRecyle's blogs.

  • CalRecycle Adds Crews to Ventura County Wildfire Cleanup

    First Property Cleared for Rebuilding Following Thomas Fire

    SACRAMENTO – The California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery is now managing 41 private contractor crews to clear wildfire debris from affected properties in the City of Ventura and Ventura County. An additional four crews, consisting of three to five people each, began work late last week to help remove soil, ash, metal, concrete, and other debris from properties destroyed by December’s 281,893-acre Thomas Fire.

    “CalRecycle is proud to work alongside our state and local partners to help clear this wildfire debris and give the resilient communities of Ventura County the opportunity to move forward,” CalRecycle Director Scott Smithline said. “At the end of this debris removal process, homeowners can be confident in knowing their properties are clean, safe, and ready for rebuilding.”

    Debris Removal Operations

    Phase 1 – The California Department of Toxic Substances Control removes hazardous debris such as asbestos siding or pipe insulation; paints; batteries; flammable liquids; and other materials. See the current progress here.

    Phase 2 – Following the removal of hazardous debris, CalRecycle contractors began the following operations to restore fire-damaged lots to pre-fire conditions:

    • Site Documentation, Assessments, and Analysis – Began Jan. 11, 2018. Contractor crews measure and document foundation, structures, debris, utility infrastructure, and property-specific hazards. Any remaining asbestos-containing material is identified and removed. Crews obtain and evaluate background soil samples to establish cleanup goals for the project.
    • Debris Removal – Began Jan. 19, 2018. Contractor crews remove metals and concrete for recycling, and ash and contaminated soil for disposal.
    • Confirmation Sampling – Began Jan. 31, 2018. Contractor crews sample and analyze soil, compare results to program cleanup goals.
    • Erosion Control – Began Feb. 2, 2018. Contractor crews implement storm water best management practices to control sediment runoff and promote vegetation growth.

    At the conclusion of the debris cleanup program, CalRecycle will provide each property owner with a certificate that verifies the lot is clean and eligible to receive a building permit from the county. CalRecycle anticipates debris removal work to be completed in all areas in April 2018. Activities related to confirmation sampling and erosion control may continue into May 2018.

    Current Ventura County Wildfire Debris Removal Status 

    • Right of Entry Forms Returned: 669
    • Site Documentation/Assessments Complete: 647
    • Debris Removal Complete: 83
    • Confirmation Sampling Complete: 21
    • Erosion Control Implemented: 3
    • Final Inspection Completed: 1

    Debris removal programs are implemented under the leadership of the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (CalOES) and local governments.  CalRecycle oversees and manages contractors and consultants to conduct the debris removal at no out-of-pocket cost to homeowners. Homeowners who wish to participate must return signed Right of Entry forms to their local governments. A central Debris Removal Operations Center has been established as a resource for impacted homeowners to return Right of Entry forms and get answers to any questions or concerns.

    Debris Removal Operations Center
    290 Maple Court, Suite 120
    Ventura, CA  93003
    (805) 765-4259

    Homeowners who wish to conduct their own cleanup may do so but should be aware of all safety and environmental standards and requirements. The City of Ventura and Ventura County have guidelines available for residents who wish to pursue this option. Commercial properties may be eligible for state-funded debris removal if damaged lots pose a direct threat to public health or the environment. Thus far, CalRecycle crews have been tasked with debris removal for the Hawaiian Village and Harbor View apartment complexes.

    For more information about the debris cleanup program,

    Posted on In the Loop by Lance Klug on Feb 15, 2018

  • California Fights Climate Change by Feeding the Hungry

    $9.4 Million Awarded to 31 Projects that Feed Californians, Reduce Food Waste 

    Media Contact: Lance Klug
    (916) 341-6293


    SACRAMENTO – The California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery has announced the first award recipients for its newFood Waste Prevention and Rescue Grant Program. As part of California’s comprehensive strategy to combat climate change, CalRecycle awarded $9.4 million to 31 projects throughout the state that:

    • Decrease the estimated 6 million tons of food waste landfilled in California each year, and
    • Increase the state’s capacity to collect, transport, store, and distribute more food for the roughly 1 in 8 Californians who are food insecure.

    When sent to landfills, food and other organic waste decomposes and generates methane, a potent greenhouse gas with a heat-trapping effect at least 86 times greater than carbon dioxide over a 20-year span. 

    “Bolstering California’s food recovery infrastructure will help feed communities in need, create new jobs, and result in significant greenhouse gas reductions,” CalRecycle Director Scott Smithline said. “Our hope is that these programs will inspire similar efforts throughout California.”

    CalRecycle’s Food Waste Prevention and Rescue Grant Program is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide initiative that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment—particularly in disadvantaged communities.

    To be eligible for grant funding, projects must be located in California; result in permanent, annual, and measurable reductions in greenhouse gas emissions; and increase the quantity of California-generated food materials prevented, reduced, or rescued from disposal. Note: Many of the following grant recipients serve multiple counties.

    Here is a list of the grant funding recipients:

    • Alameda County Waste Management Authority, Alameda County: $500,00
    • Associated Students, Inc., Los Angeles County: $65,340
    • City of Riverside, Riverside County: $209,736
    • City of Santa Monica, Los Angeles County, $100,000
    • Cityteam-Oakland, Alameda County: $96,429
    • Food Bank Coalition of SLO County, San Luis Obispo County: $100,000
    • Food Bank for Monterey County, Monterey County: $475,072
    • Food Finders, Inc., Los Angeles County: $100,000
    • Food Forward, Los Angeles County: $500,000
    • Jesus Provides Our Daily Bread dba Jesus Center, Butte County: $499,789
    • Joint Venture Silicon Valley Network, Santa Clara County: $313,000
    • Los Angeles Regional Food Bank, Los Angeles County: $386,960
    • ProduceGood, San Diego County: $100,000
    • Re-plate, Inc., Alameda County: $299,100
    • San Diego Food System Alliance, a Fiscal Project of Leah’s Pantry, San Diego County: $500,000
    • St. Francis Center, Los Angeles County: $100,000
    • The Midnight Mission, Los Angeles County: $100,000
    • University of California, Merced, Merced County: $100,000
    • *Waste Not OC Coalition, a Fiscal Project of OneOC,Merced County: $339,574
    • White Pony Express, Contra Costa County: $115,000

    Total (FY 2016-2017 Funds): $5,000,000

    • City of Culver City, Los Angeles County: $497,144
    • City of Richmond, Contra Costa County: $327,500
    • Desert Manna, San Bernardino County: $470,450
    • El Dorado County: $277,140
    • Fresno Metropolitan Ministry, Fresno County: $500,000
    • Imperial Valley Food Bank, Imperial County: $500,000
    • Kern County: $191,963
    • Los Angeles Conservation Corps, Los Angeles County: $375,206
    • Peninsula Food Runners, San Francisco County: $200,000
    • Strong Food/L.A. Kitchen, Inc., Los Angeles County: $389,387
    • Ventura County: $499,293
    • *Waste Not OC Coalition, a Fiscal Project of OneOC,Orange County: $160,426

    Total (FY 2017-2018 Funds): $4,388,509

    *Project funded with combination of FY 2016-17 and FY 2017-18 allocations


    Eligible applicants for CalRecycle’s Food Waste Prevention and Rescue Grant Program include cities, counties, and other local agencies; businesses; California universities and colleges; nonprofit organizations; and qualifying Indian Tribes. Applicants may submit cooperative or regional applications with no more than four participants to achieve food recovery projections. 

    Find out more about CalRecycle’s California Climate Investments grants and loans and read stories from other grant recipients about how they’re putting Cap-and-Trade dollars to work for California’s economy, environment, and the health of our communities.

    Posted on In the Loop by Lance Klug on Feb 1, 2018

  • CalRecycle Completes Wildfire Debris Removal in Northern California

    Fire-Affected Properties Cleared in Butte, Nevada, and Yuba Counties

    Media Contact: Lance Klug
    (916) 341-6293 |                                               

    SACRAMENTO – Crews managed by the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery have completed the removal of wildfire debris on properties in Butte, Nevada, and Yuba counties following October’s devastating wildfires in Northern California. Since November 16, crews removed more than 63,000 tons of ash, debris, and contaminated soil from 250 properties in which owners chose to participate in the CalRecycle-managed cleanup.

    “The completion of debris removal in Butte, Nevada, and Yuba counties marks an important milestone in Northern California’s wildfire recovery efforts,” CalRecycle Director Scott Smithline said. “Thanks to the tireless work of our debris removal crews, 2018 can be a year of rebuilding and new hope for these communities.” 



     A property in Yuba County prior to debris removal (left) and a Butte County property following the removal of ash, debris, and contaminated soil (right).

    Tonnage Removed by Waste Type:

    • Metals: 2,939 tons
    • Debris, Ash, & Soil: 46,538 tons
    • Concrete: 13,124 tons
    • Vegetation: 713 tons
    • Total: 63,314 tons

    Next Steps

    Final soil testing, the installation of erosion control measures, and final property inspections are on track to be complete early this year. Property owners will receive a certificate from their respective counties that verifies their lot is clean and eligible to receive a building permit.

    CalRecycle is working in coordination with the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services and other state and local partners as part of the Consolidated Debris Removal Program. The joint effort was developed after the string of October 2017 wildfires destroyed homes in Butte, Lake, Mendocino, Napa, Nevada, Sonoma, and Yuba counties. CalRecycle was tasked with leading cleanup operations in Butte, Nevada, and Yuba counties.
    Posted on In the Loop by Lance Klug on Jan 7, 2018