Marin Ups its Recycling Policy for Paint

Empty paint can

Now that you’re done sprucing up the house with a fresh coat of paint, what do you do with the excess? Before you send it to the dump, find out about the recycling and reuse programs available. After opting in to a national program called PaintCare, the county has been helping the environment and saving a sizable amount of money while doing so. Novato, which has set up its own paint-recycling program, has also seen benefits. “Programs like this can make a significant impact on helping reduce waste and controlling costs in our waste management system,” says Steve Devine, program manager with the Marin County Department of Public Works’ Waste Management Division. But recycling is only one piece of the picture. “We’re being reimbursed for putting perfectly good paint back on the shelves,” says Courtney Scott, an environmental management coordinator. What kind of impact is this having exactly? Here are the 2014–2015 numbers.

• 33 percent of hazardous household waste is paint

• Less than 2 percent of paint going to landfill

• $290,493 total county savings

• $4.65 a gallon for resold paint


This article originally appeared in Marin Magazine’s print edition under the headline: “Recycling Rebate.” 

Kasia Pawlowska

Kasia Pawlowska loves words. A native of Poland, Kasia moved to the States when she was seven. The San Francisco State University creative writing graduate went on to write for publications like the San Francisco Bay Guardian and KQED Arts among others prior to joining the Marin Magazine staff. Topics Kasia has covered include travel, trends, mushroom hunting, an award-winning series on social media addiction and loads of other random things. When she’s not busy blogging or researching and writing articles, she’s either at home writing postcards and reading or going to shows. Recently, Kasia has been trying to branch out and diversify, ie: use different emojis. Her quest for the perfect chip is never-ending.