Colorado Compost Regulation Revisions

As of March 30, 2024, revisions to Section 14 of the Solid Waste Regulations are effective.  The primary aim of these revisions was to address a lack of mid-tier food waste composting options within our regulatory structure.  The following is a summary of changes to increase food waste composting opportunities:

CESQ Volume Increase
Section 14.1.4(A) - Conditionally exempt small quantity operations may now have onsite and in-process up to 20 cubic yards of Type 2 feedstocks at any one time, regardless of processing type (this is an increase from 5/10 cy for pile/vessel).

Class I food and yard waste facility
Section 14.2.1(B) - A new Class I facility that can have onsite and in-process up to 5,000 cubic yards of Type 1 feedstocks, source separated organics, food residuals, and food processing vegetative waste, including from offsite sources.

Class I on-farm food waste facility
Section 14.2.1(C) - A new Class I facility on agriculturally zoned land that can have onsite and in-process up to 5,000 cubic yards of Type 1 feedstocks, source separated organics, food residuals, and food processing vegetative waste, in addition to agricultural materials generated onsite. This facility must be less than 2-acres in size.

Additionally, changes were made to increase contact and stormwater management options for Class I facilities, an operator training requirement is now in effect for most permitted classes of facilities, and updated requirements for finished compost testing and storage have been made. Details can be found below. If no effective date is listed, then the change is effective as of the date of the regulatory revision (March 30, 2024).


Class I water controls
Section 14.2.3 has been revised to allow for alternate contact water management systems, and has clarified what features are considered to be engineered.

Operator training
The following facility types now require at least one employee on staff that has completed a compost operations training course: The new Class I facilities (14.2.4(K)) , all Class II (14.3.5(K)) and Class III (14.4.5(K)) operations.  Compliance date is March 30, 2025.


Finished compost sampling
Section 14.6(D) - All facilities must now sample finished compost for both fecal coliform and salmonella.  This change is effective immediately, and facilities with EDOP's must revise them to include this new sampling protocol by March 30, 2025.

Finished compost storage
Section 14.6(J) - Finished compost may only be stored in areas identified in the facility's operations plan.

Soil amendments
Section 14.6(K) - Soil amendments may not be distributed without meeting Section 14.6(C) requirements, and must be stored in a manner that is protective of human health and the environment. Liquid soil amendment storage on the ground is subject to Section 9 of the regulations.

Stakeholder Information
Updated Regulations
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