The elephant in the landfill has long been a bulky, soiled mattress, which can take up to 23 cubic feet of space. Unfortunately, landfilling has been the best-case scenario: abandoned mattresses have proliferated, dumped by those not wanting to pay fees to dispose of them. Mattresses on the street, in parks, or along roadways quickly become eyesores and strain small municipal budgets. In a big victory for recycling in California, these expensive, inefficient end-of-life cycles for mattresses are about to be transformed. Governor Brown signed SB 254 into law this September, which will create a mattress recycling program in the state that will save landfill space, create recycling jobs, and make it easy for consumers to do the right thing. State Senator Loni Hancock co-authored the mattress recycling bill, and Californians Against Waste helped move it forward. Under the law, beginning July 1, 2014, retailers will be required to offer pick up or drop off for an old mattress, at no additional cost, when consumers purchase a new mattress. The law will also provide funding for municipalities to collect illegally dumped mattresses and get them to recycling facilities. Instead of landfilling mattresses, their useful materials like cotton, wood, and metal will be recycled or re-purposed, contributing to the state’s goal of 75% of all solid waste to be recycled by 2020. Read more about this big recycling victory in a press release from Californians Against Waste.