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waste management hierarchy

Pollution Prevention Program

Reduce Waste!

                Be a Green Business!

                                        Save Money!

The Hazardous Materials Division (HMD) meets periodically with industry, business representatives and community groups to identify better ways to meet the needs of both, the businesses community and the general public in San Diego County. In the year 2000, these meetings identified the need for a program that would provide assistance to small businesses in incorporating pollution prevention into their operations. To fulfill that need, the HMD established in 2001 the Pollution Prevention Program.

The HMD Pollution Prevention Program focuses in helping businesses reduce their generation of hazardous and solid waste. Pollution Prevention emphasizes the elimination or reduction of wastes/toxicity at the source of generation or source reduction. The preferred waste hierarchy starts with source reduction as the priority (not generating waste in the first place or using input materials with lower toxicity levels) then reuse, recycling, energy recovery, treatment and finally, disposal.

Pollution prevention can be accomplished by:
Making purchasing decisions that are environmentally preferable such as choosing less toxic or recycled content product, and using products that are reusable instead of disposable.

  • Choosing less toxic alternatives,
  • Choosing products that have recycled content, preferably over 30% post-consumer content
  • Choosing products that are reusable instead of disposable, and,
  • Keeping material stock to a minimum, reducing the need to dispose of outdated items.
  • Preventing spills and accidental releases.
  • Preventing raw material and product losses.
  • Conserving our natural resources such as energy and water.

The HMD Pollution Prevention Specialist can help your small business and assist you in your Pollution Prevention efforts by:

  • Providing informational materials and resources.
  • Conducting training workshops geared to the type of industry that you represent
  • Visiting your business site and providing you with a free individual business needs assessment in a non-enforcement capacity.
  • Evaluating existing and future pollution prevention approaches through baseline and trend analysis.
  • Expanding services by developing partnerships with other regulatory agencies such as the Air Pollution Control District and various Stormwater regulatory agencies.

Offering a Green Business Program to reward businesses that take the extra steps of incorporating pollution prevention into their operations.

For more information about the
San Diego Area Green Business Program visit:
Or Email:
Program is currently available for automotive and restaurant businesses only

Additional information resources about Pollution Prevention for small businesses:

HMD Small Business Assistance Self-Audit Checklists
Compliance and Pollution Prevention Automotive Repair Checklist HM-9631 & HM-9632  PDF
Spanish version of the Pollution Prevention Automotive Repair Checklist HM-9632s  PDF

Automotive Green Business Checklist
More Pollution Prevention Resources

HMD FormsHMD PublicationsHMD Topics