Recycling Programs — We Recycle

Santa Ana Green Logo

Three Cart Residential Recycling Program

House Under Construction

Used Motor Oil Recycling Program

City Employee Battery Recycling Program

Household Hazardous Waste

Sharps Recycling Program

Santa Ana continues to exceed the State of California’s recycling goals.  In 1995, the first reporting year with a minimum goal of 25 percent, the City recorded 40 percent diversion.  In the year 2000, with a minimum goal of 50 percent, the City reported 56 percent diversion.  The most recent reporting year of 2016 shows 65 percent diversion.

The progress comes with the implementation of successful programs such as:

Residential Curbside Recycling
The City has a three-cart system where residents separate their materials into a 1) recyclables cart, 2) green waste cart, and 3) trash cart.  Other programs implemented through our hauler, Waste Management, include two free bulky item pickups per year, where large items are picked up and recycled, and a Christmas tree recycling program.

Mandatory Commercial and Multifamily Recycling (AB341)
A ssembly Bill 341, effective 7/1/12, requires all businseses generating four cubic yards or more of waste on a weekly basis, and multifamily properties with five or more units to recycle. In many cases, recycling programs can save you money. For programs and recycling tips, follow this link.

Mandatory Organics Recycling (AB 1826)
California has recently passed legislation requiring businesses to recycle organics starting April 1, 2016. The City and Waste Management are working together to offer comprehensive recycling programs for your organization. For more information, follow this link. For a Self-Reporting Form, follow this link. For Waste Mangement information, follow this link. For CalRecycle information, follow this link.

Construction and Demolition Recycling
The California Green Building Standards Code requires 65% diversion of most construction and demolition waste. In order to achieve this diversion, the City has two authorized haulers, Waste Management (714-558-7761) and Ware Disposal (714-834-0234), which provide recycling services for construction and demolition projects for residents and businesses. Construction and demolition debris is accepted for recycling at Madison Materials located at 1035 East 4th Street, Santa Ana, 714-664-0159. See the complete flyer by following this link C & D Recycling Requirement.

Certified Recycling Centers
Several Certified Recycling Centers are located in the city where residents can take their bottles and cans to have them recycled, and receive cash back for doing so. Find a center near you.

Used Motor Oil and Oil Filter Program
The California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery, also known as CalRecycle, provides the City with grant funding to bring used motor oil and filter recycling to residents.  These items are picked up curbside by Waste Management if you live in a single-family home.  Apartment and condominium residents can take their used motor oil to one of many certified recycling centers in the city that will accept used motor oil for recycling. Find a location near you.

All residents can take their used motor oil and filters to the Household Hazardous Waste Collection centers at the County landfills for FREE disposal. Call 714-834-6752 to find a location near you, or to learn more. You can also log on to

Universal Waste Program
Through a grant from OC Waste & Recycling, residents are provided FREE door-to-door collection of household batteries, fluorescent tubes and bulbs, electronic devices (such as TVs, computers, and cell phones), and mercury-containing items (such as old thermometers and thermostats). If you live in a single-family home or duplex, these items are picked up by appointment only by WM Curbside; please call 800-449-7587 to schedule an appointment.

All residents can take their universal waste to the Household Hazardous Waste Collection centers at the County landfills for FREE disposal. Call 714-834-6752 to find a location near you, or to learn more. You can also log on to

City Employee Battery Recycling
Employees recycle batteries from home and work to reduce the number of batteries going into landfills.

The City sponsors FREE composting workshops to Santa Ana residents through the Fullerton Arboretum.  A $25 voucher is available to all who attend for the purchase of a compost bin from Ace Hardware at 117 West Commonwealth in Fullerton.  Contact the Fullerton Arboretum at 657-278-3407 to learn more.

Household Hazardous Waste
The County of Orange offers FREE disposal for hazardous waste materials at locations throughout the County. Call 714-834-6752 to find a location near you, or to learn more. You can also log on to

Sharps/Needles Recycling
The City sponsors a sharps recycling program.  Those who require regular medical injections will have access to proper and safe disposal of their needles.

Tire Recycling
CalRecycle is working to promote tire recycling and the use of tire-derived products. It is CalRecycle’s goal to reduce the amount of tires that occupy California’s landfills by putting unwanted tires to use through its Green Roads program. Green Roads promotes the use of shredded or ground scrap tires in paving and construction projects, keeping old tires out of landfills and away from fields and alleyways. These recycled tires can be used as inexpensive backfill behind retaining walls, or as an asphalt additive, with many benefits such as durability and noise reduction. Using recycled tires to build greener roads is not only good for the environment, it’s good for the bottom line. Check out CalRecycle’s website at for information about the Green Roads campaign, recycling options and tire-derived products.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Three great ways to handle waste: reduce, reuse, recycle:

  • Reduce: Cut back on the amount of waste you make by purchasing in bulk, not in single-use packaging. Pack your lunch and lunch items in a lunchbox and reusable containers, instead of disposable bags.
  • Reuse: Find a new way to use resources, clothing, household items, furniture, etc. Donate reusable items to local non-profits that give new life to these resources.
  • Recycle: Participate in the City’s recycling programs. Recycling programs save resources and may lower your trash bill.

Small changes can lead to significant resource savings over time, and this is good for the environment!

The City Buys Recycled!
In September of 2006, the Santa Ana City Council adopted a procurement policy that emphasizes the purchase of recycled goods.  The adoption of this polity was important in closing the recycling loop—reduce-reuse-recycle--and is a big issue at the State level.

We’re Involved!  
The City has a representative on the County of Orange Waste Management Commission and a representative on the County of Orange Recycling Coordinators group.  These two groups assist cities in implementing their recycling programs and provide coordination with the Orange County Board of Supervisors.