Fresno recycling“Best recycling cities in the U.S.” and “Fresno, CA” (pop. 505,882) are assuredly two phrases always mentioned together. Often lauded for its high recycling rates and innovative policies, Fresno’s recycling reputation has become a green beacon in the heart of Central California’s San Joaquin Valley. “Save it for blue, it’s up to you” is the city’s de facto motto, reminding Fresnans that blue 96-gallon recycling containers dot the city and the curbsides, and an incredible number of items can safely be pitched inside them.

Materials recycled

Paper Including office paper, construction paper, manila folders, books, junk mail, envelopes, newspapers and inserts, magazines, catalogs, telephone books, flattened milk cartons, flattened cardboard, flattened cereal and dry food boxes, juice boxes, paper bags and paper packaging/wrap. Plastics Plastic containers numbered 1 through 5 and number 7 (no Styrofoam containers accepted). Shrink wrap, bubble wrap plastic bags and plastic toys are also accepted. All items must be rinsed/cleaned; no caps or lids. Metals Including aluminum cans, tin cans, empty aerosol cans and empty paint cans, lawn chair frames, metal frames, all steel items. All items must be cleaned and must be able to fit loosely in the bin. Glass Glass food and beverage bottles and jars. All items must be rinsed/cleaned. Other items Including transistor radios, blowdryers, curling irons, small microwave ovens, coffee pots, toaster ovens and small power tools. Batteries must be removed. New and used motor oil and filters can also be collected during regular curbside service. Motor oil must be placed next to bin in an approved city oil container.


Curbside pick-up occurs on a weekly basis, same day as trash and yard waste pick-up (a collection map is available online). Carts must be placed curbside no earlier than 6 p.m. the day prior to pick-up, and no later than 5:30 a.m. day of pick-up. Carts must be returned to property by 8 p.m. day of pick-up.

Other programs

The County of Fresno hosts biannual household hazardous waste collection events at Fresno Yosemite Airport in the spring and fall. A bevy of drop-off options are provided year-round for county residents for items such as fluorescent lights, batteries, medical sharps, medications, paint and e-waste. A door-to-door collection program for those who cannot drop off or attend these events is also an option. The City of Fresno provides regular Christmas tree recycling, both by appointment or in normal green yard waste bins, for the first two weeks in January. Trees must be cut into lengths that fit easily in the bins, otherwise an appointment is necessary.

More information

Visit the City of Fresno Recycling Program website for more recycling program info.