Solid Waste Local Enforcement Agency

The Humboldt County Division of Environmental Health is designated by the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) as the Local Enforcement Agency (LEA) for Humboldt County in its entirety. The cities of Arcata, Blue Lake, Eureka, Ferndale, Fortuna, Rio Dell, and Trinidad each approved of this action by resolutions adopted in 1992.

LEA responsibilities include educating individuals and business entities on the proper methods for handling and disposing of solid waste. Solid waste is nonhazardous, nonliquid waste and includes garbage, compostable materials, and construction and demolition debris.

Handling Considerations

Public and environmental health considerations of solid waste handling are:
  • Control of vectors (potential disease-carrying animals such as rats, mice, flies, and mosquitoes)
  • Control of public safety and health nuisances (fires, odors, dust, bear, and bird attraction)
  • Prevention of ground and surface water contamination


The LEA provides the following services:
  • Issues, reviews, revises, and modifies solid waste facility permits
  • Fulfills public notice requirements
  • Reviews and comments on design plans and environmental review documents
  • Performs inspections of solid waste operations and facilities throughout the incorporated and unincorporated areas of Humboldt County
    • As of April 2013 we have an inventory of 62 active and inactive sites requiring routine inspection


Education of solid waste site operators as well as the public on sound solid waste handling disposal practices is the focus of our program. Enforcement of solid waste regulations is essential to protect public health and the environment.