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Waste policies in Shanghai bring positive results

(chinadaily.com.cn) | Aug 30, 2019

Shanghai's waste sorting-policies have achieved positive results in the past two months.

Since the municipal regulation on waste management took effect on July 1, up to 8,200 tons of kitchen garbage has been handled separately per day, an increase of 110 percent from the end of last year, official data has shown.

The city's ability to recycle kitchen waste has improved as well.

According to the data, up to 4,600 tons of organic garbage is reused per day, and the amount is expected to surge to 5,800 tons by the end of the year.

The amount of residual waste is now less than 17,000 tons per day, dropping 21 percent from last year, while the weight of recyclables hit 4,400 tons per day, five times higher than last year.

As China's first city to enforce strict regulations on garbage sorting and recycling, the municipality stipulated that residents should classify garbage into four categories: recyclables, kitchen waste, hazardous waste and residual waste.

A neighborhood in Hongkou district in northern Shanghai, Yutai Jingyuan has set a positive example of waste sorting.

Each of the 371 families in the neighborhood received a hanging trash bag bracket and a manual for garbage sorting.

The bracket can be hung on kitchen cupboards, which makes dumping food garbage more convenient.

A volunteer team was formed to show people how to sort their trash at garbage collection sites.

The neighborhood has also come up with new ideas on organic waste recycling.

Two special dumpsters are set in its central garden for organic waste fermentation.

Usually after around a month and half, kitchen waste put in the dumpsters changes to ecological fertilizer and enzyme, with hardly any smell.

The recycled organic matter is then used for planting or growing fruit and vegetables in the garden. Residents can also use the fertilizer for plants at home.

Over five percent of the total kitchen garbage the neighborhood collected per day was recycled in this way, according to Wang Jinghua, secretary of the Party's general branch in Hongye community.

"The approach relieves garbage delivery stress and stimulates residents' interest in garbage sorting, as they witness how the waste they generate turns into something useful," said Wang.

"Children in the neighborhood will observe and explore plant growth and have a lot fun in gardening and garbage sorting," she said.

The neighborhood's data shows that over 2,400 liters of garbage has been recycled into enzyme and fertilizer since the neighborhood was selected as a waste sorting pilot in April.

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