What Goes Where? - Recology Sonoma Marin
California Cont.
What Goes Where?

What Goes Where?

Find out how to properly dispose of household material by clicking the tabs below or by searching for an item (last tab). You can also view or download our printable sorting guides. If you’re unable to find what you’re looking for, please reach out!

We accept all food scraps, soiled paper, and plants in the green compost cart. Please do not place compostable material in plastic or compostable plastic bags, as the current regional compost facilities are unable to process those materials. Paper bags are acceptable.

Accepted Compost Materials
Unaccepted Compost Materials
Food Scraps

  • Bread, grains, and pasta
  • Coffee grounds with a paper filter
  • Dairy
  • Eggshells and eggs
  • Fruit (pits and shells too)
  • Leftovers and spoiled food
  • Meat (including bones)
  • Seafood (including shellfish)
  • Tea and tea bags
  • Vegetables

Food Soiled Paper

  • Coffee filters
  • Greasy pizza boxes
  • Paper cups and plates (without film plastic liner)
  • Paper bags, napkins, tissues, and towels
  • Paper take-out boxes and containers
    (without film plastic liner)
  • Tissues

  • Branches and brush
  • Flowers and floral trimmings
  • Grasses and weeds
  • Leaves
  • Tree trimmings (less than 6 inches in diameter and 4 feet long)


  • Hair, fur, and feathers (non-synthetic)
  • Shredded paper
  • Wood – small pieces of lumber or sawdust from clean wood only (no plywood, pressboard, painted, stained, or treated wood)
  • Wooden chopsticks and coffee stir sticks

  • Aluminum foil or trays
  • “Biodegradable” and “Compostable” labeled plastics (bags, utensils, cups)
  • Cat litter or animal feces
  • Ceramic dishware or glassware
  • Clothing, linens, and rags
  • Cooking oil
  • Corks – Natural
  • Corks – plastic
  • Diapers
  • Dirt, rocks, or stone
  • Flower pots or trays
  • Foil-backed or plastic-backed paper
  • Glass, metal, or plastic not labeled “Compostable”
  • Juice or soy milk type boxes with foil liner
  • Liquids or ice
  • Plastic bags, wrappers, or film
  • Recyclable/clean cardboard or paper
  • Styrofoam
  • Waxy paper milk and juice cartons/cardboard
  • Wood – plywood, pressboard, painted or stained wood
  • Poison Oak, Yukka tree trimmings, Bamboo, Cactus, Palm fronds

Please do not place recyclable materials in plastic bags, as the recycling facility is unable to process those materials. Paper bags are acceptable.

Accepted Recycling Materials (Empty, Clean, and Dry) Unaccepted Recyclables
Glass (no liquids or food)

  • Glass bottles and jars only (metal caps and lids too)

Metal (no liquids or food)

  • Aluminum cans
  • Aluminum foil and trays (ball foil up to softball size)
  • Caps and lids from bottles, jars, and steel (tin) cans
  • Paint cans (must be empty or dry)
  • Spray cans (must be empty)
  • Steel (tin) cans

Plastic bottles, tubs, and jugs (rinsed)

  • Bottles (leave caps on)
  • Containers and clamshells
  • Laundry detergent bottles
  • Tubs and lids (yogurt containers and Tupperware)
Paper (clean, dry, and unsoiled)

  • Bags (paper only, no plastic)
  • Cardboard (non-waxed)
  • Cereal boxes
  • Computer and office paper
  • Egg cartons
  • Envelopes (windows okay)
  • Juice or soy milk type boxes with foil liner
  • Junk mail and magazines
  • Newspapers
  • Packing paper
  • Phonebooks
  • Sticky notes
  • Waxy paper milk or juice cartons
  • Wrapping paper

  • Batteries
  • Ceramic dishware or glassware
  • Clothing, linens, and rags
  • Coat hangers
  • Electronics
  • Foil-backed or plastic-backed paper
  • Food scraps
  • Glass mirrors and windows
  • Incandescent, Fluorescent, LEDs, or HID Lightbulbs
  • Plastic bags, wrappers, or film
  • Plastic items mixed with metal, fabric, or rubber
  • Plastic labeled “Compostable” or “Biodegradable”
  • Scrap metal
  • Shredded paper
  • Soiled paper
  • Styrofoam
  • Waxed cardboard and paper
  • Wood
  • Yard trimmings

Few things, once they are used, are actually trash. Among such things are non-recyclable plastics and other complex materials that were not designed to be recycled.

Accepted Landfill Items Unaccepted Trash Items
  • Cat litter and animal feces (bagged)
  • Ceramic dishware or glassware
  • Clothing linens and rags
  • Cigarette Butts (extinguished – run under water prior to disposal)
  • Dental floss
  • Diapers
  • Feminine Hygiene Products
  • Foil-backed or plastic-backed paper
  • Glass mirrors and windows
  • Incandescent light bulbs
    (no fluorescents or HIDs)
  • Mylar (shiny metal) bags (potato chips, candy bars, balloons, etc)
  • Pens and pencils
  • Plastic bags, wrappers, and film (not labeled “Compostable”)
  • Plastic items mixed with metal, fabric, or rubber
  • Plastic labeled “Biodegradable” only
  • Rubber bands
  • Six-pack ring holder – please cut up
  • Sponges
  • Styrofoam
  • Twist Ties
  • Wood – small pieces of plywood, pressboard, and painted or stained wood

  • Appliances
  • Asbestos
  • Batteries
  • Construction debris
  • Cooking oil and grease
  • Dirt, rocks, or stone
  • Electronics
  • Fluorescent, LED, or HID lightbulbs
  • Household hazardous waste or chemicals
  • Large items (furniture, metal, plastic, wood)
  • Liquids or ice
  • Motor oil
  • Needles or syringes
  • Paint
  • Tires
  • Toys with electronics or batteries
  • Treated wood

Zero Waste Sonoma has a number of program changes and updates regarding HHW events due to COVID-19. Please check the link for the latest updates. https://zerowastesonoma.gov/covid-19

It is illegal to put items such as electronics, batteries, fluorescent bulbs, pesticides, and other chemicals in the trash. When household hazardous wastes end up in a landfill, they can cause serious threats to humans, wildlife, and the environment.

  • Batteries: Recology offers curbside pickup of household batteries for those in Sonoma County. Please place batteries in a sealed plastic bag on top of your recycling cart on your service day. Your recycling driver will collect them separately from your recyclable materials. Cell phone and laptop batteries are NOT allowed.

  • Motor Oil:  Recology offers curbside pickup of motor oil and filters. Just call customer service to request an oil kit and filter bag. When filled, call us again to request a pick-up, and place oil and filters at the curb next (NOT IN) to your recycling cart for pickup. There are also many locations in Sonoma County that will accept motor oil and filters. Visit www.ZeroWasteSonoma.gov to find a location.

Electronics: Any Sonoma County transfer station will accept household electronics for recycling. Goodwill will also accept electronics, working or not. Visit www.ZeroWasteSonoma.gov for additional recycling options and community drop-off events.

    • Treated Wood Waste Now Accepted: Starting August 31, 2022, treated wood (any wood that has been treated with a chemical preservative to protect the wood against attacks from insects, microorganisms, or fungi) is accepted for disposal and considered hazardous waste per California State law. It must be disposed of properly. Find a disposal site near you: https://zerowastesonoma.gov/materials/treated-wood/.