Everyone is required to stay home, except for essential needs. When out, protect yourself and those around you by wearing a face covering, staying 6 feet away from others, and washing your hands often. Learn more at cityofberkeley.info/covid19. City offices are closed to the public. Some services are available remotely.

The City of Berkeley Health Officer has ordered all residents to shelter at home, leaving only to receive or provide essential services, starting 12:01 am on Tuesday, March 17. See details of the Order, frequently asked questions, and recommendations from Berkeley Public Health at https://www.cityofberkeley.info/coronavirus.

City Council Live Stream: Please visit https://www.cityofberkeley.info/CalendarEventWebcastMain.aspx

ZAB Live Stream: Please visit http://www.cityofberkeley.info/Clerk/Commissions/Zoning_Adjustment_Board_Meeting_-_Video_Stream.aspx.

The City of Berkeley web site is undergoing scheduled maintenance starting on Friday night, September 13 and ending on Saturday afternoon, September 14. During this time, most web pages should be available, but some resources may become unavailable for short periods of time.

Looking for a live stream of the Zoning Adjustments Board (ZAB) meeting on 5/9/19, at 7:00pm? Please visit https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1UAnZ8kU8EWllREyOY7rwQ/. The normal viewing methods will not work this time due to a concurrent City Council Special Meeting at the same time.

Looking for a live stream of the Zoning Adjustments Board (ZAB) meeting on 2/28/19, from 6:00 to 11:00 PM? Please visit http://www.cityofberkeley.info/Clerk/Commissions/Zoning_Adjustment_Board_Meeting_-_Video_Stream.aspx. The normal viewing methods will not work this time due to a concurrent City Council Special Meeting at the same date and time.

PG&E is reporting a widespread outage affecting thousands of customers in Berkeley and many City buildings, including the Finance Customer Service Center and the Permit Service Center. Call respective City services for further details, or check the PG&E outage page. Power is expected to return by 12:45pm. Traffic lights that are not working should be treated as a four-way stop sign.

Translation Disclaimer

Department of Public Works
Department of Public Works


COVID-19 Service Information: Commercial and residential refuse, compost, and recycling collection continues as regularly scheduled. The Transfer Station and Berkeley Recycling Center are open to the public. Face coverings and social distancing required.

See COVID-19 service notices for a full list of changes to City services during the pandemic.

WEEKLY RESIDENTIAL ORGANICS COLLECTION: The City of Berkeley provides weekly residential organics collection for plant debris and food scraps. This is included with your refuse service and limited to a single 32 or 64 gallon green rollcart, serviced at the curb, per paid residential refuse account. Carts containing materials weighing over 130 lbs. will not be serviced, and the resident will have to unload contents to remove overweight materials. 

PLANT MATERIALS ACCEPTED INCLUDE: Grass clippings, leaves, pruning, brush, garden trimmings, vegetables and fruit, palm fronds, unpainted/untreated wood. 

  • All materials must fit inside cart with the lid closed.
  • Branches must be smaller than 3" in diameter and less than 3' long.
  • Please shake dirt off roots. Dirt impedes the composting process and makes collection carts very heavy.
  • DO NOT INCLUDE: pet feces, cat litter, dirt, rocks, concrete, logs or stumps.


  • All food scraps - including fruits, vegetables, meat, bones, & cheese.
  • Food Soiled Paper – including paper towels, napkins, pizza boxes, greasy paper bags, milk cartons (with any plastic parts removed), wax paper and waxed cardboard.
  • BPI Certified compostable plastic bags and containers are currently accepted in the green cart. Bioplastics must be clearly labeled "Compostable". ("Biodegradable" is NOT the same as "Compostable".) 
  • DO NOT INCLUDE: glass, metal, plastic, aseptic containers (foil-lined soup or soy cartons), or any other non-organic material.
  • DO NOT INCLUDE: Bioplastics without BPI certification. All bioplastics must be BPI certified and clearly labeled "Compostable".
  • To order a kitchen pail for food scraps: Contact Refuse Customer Service.

Composting your food scraps is easy!

Collect food scraps in your pail.
pailYou may choose to line your pail with paper or certified compostable bags.

Empty pail into your green cart and set your cart at the curb on your collection day.


EXTRA PLANT DEBRIS: Residential customers who occasionally have extra plant debris can purchase Prepaid Plant Debris Bags at the Transfer Station located at 1201 2nd St. or at the Berkeley Ace Hardware located at 2020 Milvia St. Only these special City of Berkeley prepaid bags will be collected, as their rate includes service and processing. Prepaid Plant Debris Bags must be at curb for service on next scheduled service day. Customers are limited to 10 pre-paid bags per week, and each bag must not weigh more than 40 lbs. Please do not set bags out at the curb early in wet weather.

TRUCKLOAD QUANTITIES: Bring large quantities of plant debris to the City of Berkeley Transfer Station at 1201 2nd Street. Loads that contain only compostable materials are charged a discounted rate.

Compostable material includes: plant debris, pruning, unpainted untreated wood (nails are ok), pallets, waxed cardboard, food scraps, food soiled paper, and BPI certified compostable bags

Self-haul compostable material cannot include: plywood, painted wood, treated wood, drywall, plastic bags, trash, dirt, or other non-organic materials..

See Transfer Station for current days and hours of operation, and holiday closures.

Return to top of page


Backyard composting and plant debris collection programs are designed to complement each other.  For more information about home composting call "The Rotline" at (510) 444-SOIL or (510) 444-7645 or, follow the link to the Alameda County Waste Management Authority web site.


The City's Parks, Recreation & Waterfront Department offers free compost for Berkeley residents on the last Saturday of each month from February through October, weather permitting. For complete details, see the annual flyer from Parks about this program: Free Compost for Berkeley Residents.

Home | Web Policy | Text-Only Site Map | Contact Us
Department of Public Works, 2180 Milvia Street, Berkeley, CA 94704
Questions or comments? Email: publicworks@cityofberkeley.info Phone: (510) 981-6300
(510) 981-CITY/2489 or 311 from any landline in Berkeley
TTY: (510) 981-6903