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Shanghai: Waste-sorting regulations take effect

Updated: Jul 1, 2019 Print
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Shanghai is ready with its new domestic garbage-sorting regulations, effective from July 1.

From residential communities and enterprises to public areas, the awareness of garbage sorting is at an all-time-high among residents.

Garbage sorting has become the hottest topic in locals' daily chats. It is a "lesson" that all people in Shanghai are taking. The regulations approved in January by city legislators classifies garbage into four categories — wet, recyclable, harmful garbage and the rest, which is called dry waste or residual waste.

If residents are not clear whether a kind of garbage is wet, dry or recyclable, they can treat it as dry garbage, the legislation commission of Shanghai People's Congress said June 30.

The commission explained that wet garbage requires as precise sorting as possible to enable it to be made into useful biological substances or disposed without harming the environment, and residents are encouraged to sort out recyclable garbage as all dry garbage will be mainly burnt up in disposal.

People in Shanghai can be fined up to 200 yuan ($29.13) if they fail to sort garbage properly and refuse to fix the problem. Enterprises can be fined up to 5,000 yuan for failing to have the right trash bins in place, and up to 50,000 yuan for failure to sort waste if they refuse to rectify their mistakes.

Today, the city's urban management and law enforcement authorities, together with tourism authorities and market watchdogs, will visit residential communities, shopping malls, wet markets, tourist attractions, restaurants and hotels for feedback and suggestions.

"I have bought and prepared four garbage bins at home, and I bring well-sorted garbage to the dumping spot in the morning, at lunchtime and at night," said Fan Meiling, a resident of the Aibo No. 5 residential complex in Minhang District, which has more than 2,000 households.

Garbage-sorting facilities were in place at the complex one and a half months ago.

"I have been used to garbage sorting with knowledge acquired from promotional materials and television programs," said Fan. "I know each type of garbage clearly, and carefully sort napkins out from food trash as it is dry."

The complex has nearly 200 volunteers to assist in garbage sorting.

It has several intelligent garbage collection machines which allow residents to dump garbage with a simple click and the doors of corresponding garbage boxes up. The machines will also alarm workers automatically once any box gets full.

A total of 13,000 garbage-dumping spots at residential complexes have been upgraded, accounting for 75 percent of all communities.

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