The City and County of San Francisco’s zero waste rate structure incentivizes residents to recycle and compost more, instead of tossing recoverable materials in the trash bin. For example, customers who opt for a larger recycling bin and a smaller trash bin are able to lower their monthly bill.

2017 Refuse Rate Application
Recology recently submitted a 2017 Refuse Rate Application that outlines a number of necessary changes to our services and material processing infrastructure. Learn more about the proposed zero waste rates that would become effective July 1, 2017.

Residential Rates (Single Family Homes)

Standard Residential Service
Our basic service level recommendation for a single family home is a 32 gallon compost, recycling, and trash bin.

Small Trash Bin Option
The 20-gallon trash bin rate is designed for customers who generate 20-gallons or less of trash per week. Customers who recycle all of their cardboard, rigid plastics, paper, bottles and cans in the blue cart, and compost their food scraps, yard trimmings, and soiled paper in the green bin are more likely to qualify for the 20-gallon bin rate. This rate is $16.19.

Example Monthly Residential Bill

Service Container Size & Price
Dwelling Unit Base Fee $5.16
Compost $2.06 (32 gallon)
Recycling $2.06 (32 gallon)
OR $4.12 (64 gallon)
Trash $25.90 (32 gallon)
OR $51.80 (64 gallon)
Total Monthly Bill $35.18
Example Small Trash Bin Option

Service Container Size & Price
Dwelling Unit Base Fee $5.16
Compost $2.06 (32 gallon)
Recycling $2.06 (32 gallon)
Landfill $16.19 (20 gallon)
Total Monthly Bill $25.47


Lifeline Rates Income Requirement
# of People in Household Total Gross Annual Income
1 or 2 $24,030 or less
3 $30,240 or less
4 $36,450 or less
More than 4 Add $6,210 for each
additional person

Lifeline Rates
In San Francisco, low-income households may be eligible for a 25% discount. Qualification depends on the household size and total annual income.  Lifeline Rates are applicable for 32-gallon and 20-gallon bin service only. In addition to the applicant’s income eligibility, the address on the lifeline application must be where the household lives for more than half the year (not a second home), and the applicant may not be claimed on another person’s income tax return.

Apply for Lifeline
Print and complete the application and mail it to your Recology company.
You may also call Recology and have an application faxed or mailed to you.

Recology Sunset Scavenger
250 Executive Park Blvd., Suite 2100
San Francisco, CA 94134
   Recology Golden Gate
900 Seventh Street
San Francisco, CA 94107

Printable Documents


Apartment & Condo Rates

Example Apartment/Condo Monthly Bill
(once per week service)
Service Container Size & Price
Dwelling Unit Base Fee $5.16
Compost $25.90 (32 gallon)
Recycling $25.90 (32 gallon)
Landfill $25.90 (32 gallon)
Total Monthly Bill $82.86

Our State and local laws require that all properties in San Francisco arrange for compost, recycling, and trash services. The minimum required service per unit is 16 gallons for trash, 16 gallons of recycling, and 4 gallons of compost. Each dwelling unit is provided with this level of service unless larger sizes are requested. Many units opt for larger volumes. Properties with six or more units are considered apartments and receive one monthly bill.

Diversion Discount
Apartment buildings that sort materials correctly into their recycling, compost, and trash bins qualify for a diversion discount. This discount rewards customers and property owners for participating in San Francisco zero waste initiatives. By encouraging tenants to recycle and compost when possible, you’ll be able to reduce material headed for landfill. The discount percentage is determined by your service frequency and service volume (container sizes). The maximum diversion discount is 75 percent off your monthly bill.

Need help implementing a program in your building? Contact us.

Additional Services
Premium services such as key, distance and elevation remain available and, if subscribed to, will be part of the monthly bill.  An apartment rate calculator is available apartment building owners and managers can easily see how adjusting the number and size of bins and frequency of collection will affect monthly costs.

Commercial Rates

Below is the structure for the commercial zero waste rates:

  • Base charge (fixed) 10% of total bill
  • First 10 percent of diversion not eligible for diversion discounts (diversion floor)
  • Maximum diversion discount 75%

Charges are based upon service configurations, frequency of collection, and site-specific diversion rates. Our rates are designed to offer discounts to businesses based on their diversion rate. Our rates are calculated using both a base and variable amount, depending on the businesses diversion success. The fixed cost remains constant, while the variable rate is discounted in proportion to the percent of service volume that is diverted from the landfill (up to 75% discount).

Customers receiving the highest discounts consistently and properly separate their materials into three bins (green, blue, and black). Consistently contaminated material in the recycle or compost bins can result in the loss of a commercial customer’s diversion discount. Our Waste Zero Team is available to help commercial customers manage collection costs by maximizing recycling and composting, and minimizing landfill service.