20% of all waste that goes to landfills in Los Angeles County is residential yard or green waste. In Torrance, one-third of all residential waste is green waste – grass, leaves, weeds and trimmings from bushes and trees.

This large volume uses up valuable landfill space. Yard waste in landfills generates methane gas and acidic leachate, both of which can be hazardous to the environment. The high moisture content of green waste retards burning, which reduces the efficiency of waste-to-energy plants.

When separated from regular trash, green waste can be recycled into mulch or soil amendment. By recycling green waste we will save landfill space and provide a better use of a natural resource: plant waste recycles naturally, and the decomposed materials form a rich, dark soil called humus or compost. Humus returns nutrients to the soil, improves soil texture, and promotes new plant growth.

The City of Torrance is conducting a pilot green waste collection program for your home. Your green waste will now be recycled instead of taken to a landfill. Please follow these directions to use this container properly.

This container is only for green waste or yard trimmings which include:

  • Grass/Leaves
  • Wood Chips
  • Tree Branches
  • Sawdust
  • Garden Trimmings
  • Green Plants/Weeds
  • Remove any metal or nails.
  • Branches cannot exceed 4″ (inches) in diameter or 4′ (feet) in length.
  • Large ice plant clusters and palm fronds/branches cannot be accepted in this container (they can not be composted). Place these items in the black refuse container.
  • Do not place hot ashes, coals, flammable materials (such as oil, gas or paint) or any other hazardous materials in this container.
  • Do not place liquids, dirt, rocks or construction materials in this container.
  • The lid of this container must be closed. No material should protrude from the top of the containers. Weight of the container and it’s contents cannot exceed 200 pounds.
  • Place this container for collection with your refuse (black) and recycling (grey) containers at the curb on your assigned day of the week with the lid opening facing the street. Place containers at least 18″ apart, and at least 3 feet away from obstructions such as a car or lamp post.
  • Please wash interior of container with water periodically.

Do not place green waste in plastic bags.

Additional green waste containers are free upon request. For questions and additional information, please contact the Torrance Public Works Department at 310-781-6900 or visit us at

You can leave your grass clippings on the lawn – it’s a good source of nitrogen and acts as a fertilizer. You can also recycle your green waste and food waste at home to create your own compost. Go to to learn more.