Rest Easy with Free Mattress Recycling
It is estimated that millions of mattresses and box springs reach the end of their lives in California every year. The bulky nature of mattresses and limited recycling options for used mattresses has resulted in a nightmare of illegal dumping cleanup costs and disposal fees to our County. In the dawn of the New Year, the nightmare fades with the inauguration of the California Used Mattress Recovery and Recycling Act (Chapter 388 of SB 254), a statewide effort to reduce the landfilling or illegal dumping of mattresses.
Effective January 1, 2016, all new mattresses sold in California will include a disposal fee as part of the Mattress Stewardship Program, administered by the Mattress Recycling Council. The fees collected will allow the recycling and disposal facilities to accept and recycle mattresses for free and substantially reduce public agency costs for the end-of-use management of used mattresses.
The Mattress Stewardship Program is part of a trend in Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) programs designed to place a shared responsibility for end-of-life product management on the producers involved in the product chain, instead of the general public. This encourages product designs that minimize negative impacts on human health and the environment at every stage of the product’s lifecycle.Â EPR programs have successfully helped consumers recycle old electronics, paint, carpeting and other problematic items without concern of disposal fees.
The Mattress Stewardship Program eliminates the conditions that might lead cash-strapped residents to abandon a mattress on the side of a road; a desperate act that puts the person at risk for big fines, threatens human health and safety by attracting pests and more dumping, and creates a fire, flooding and erosion hazards. For communities like ours, it relieves the hefty burden for disposal at the landfill, cleanup of illegal dumping, and untold costs when tourists are turned off by eyesores blighting our beautiful County.
When shopping for a new mattress, rest assured that old mattress and box springs will be welcomed at Salinas Valley Recycles facilities in Salinas, Gonzales and King City. For those with old mattresses and box springs taking up space, this could be a dream come true! Residents and businesses can recycle up to 9 mattresses free at the recycling drop-off areas (fees apply to recycling 10 or more at one time). For facility hours and locations visit Salinasvalleyrecycles or for more information about the Mattress Stewardship Program visit ByeByemattress.
Recycling old mattresses and box springs is another step toward a future without landfills!
Â Mandy Brooks| Recycling Coordinator| Salinas Valley Recycles