Environmental Laws

San Francisco has four key environmental ordinances that every business must follow: 

Recycling & Composting Ordinance

This ordinance requires everyone in San Francisco to separate their refuse into recyclables, compostables, and landfill trash.  


San Francisco Commuter Benefits Ordinance

This ordinance requires SF employers with 20 or more employees to offer commuter benefits such as free transportation or transportation benefits.


Check Out Bag Ordinance

This ordinance bans plastic checkout bags for all retail stores and food establishments. It also requires a charge on allowed checkout bags (compostable bags, recycled paper bags, or reusable bags).


Food Service Waste Reduction Ordinance

This ordinance requires that all to-go containers used by food vendors and restaurants in San Francisco be compostable or recyclable to-go containers. Styrofoam™ is not recyclable or compostable.


Environmental Programs

San Francisco Green Business Program

The San Francisco Green Business Program helps SF businesses operate in an environmentally responsible manner and certifies those businesses as Green Businesses. Representatives from SF Department of Public Health (DPH), SF Department of the Environment, and SF Public Utilities Commission (PUC) review your business’s efforts to conserve water and energy, and prevent pollution. If you meet their high standards, the agencies recognize you as a San Francisco Green Business. 

What are the benefits of becoming a San Francisco Green Business? Save money, protect the environment, get recognized, and promote your business. 


San Francisco Energy Watch Program

SF Energy Watch helps businesses offers free energy assessments and financial incentives for energy efficiency upgrades. Switching to energy efficient equipment can help lower your operating costs, helping both the environment and your bottom line. 


Last modified date: Mon, 11/30/2015 - 16:34