High-tech food recycling bins installed across the South Korea have led to a reduction in food waste production of around10% in the capital Seoul.
According to a report by Arirang News 10,000 containers installed across the city have helped reduce some 56,000 tonnes of food waste in the first half of this year compared to the same period last year.
In order to move towards a sustainable future, the government set periodic environmental plans and implemented several waste management policies. As a result of the national waste management policies such as the Volume Based Waste Fee (VBWF) system, the ROK has made great progress, drastically reducing the MSW landfilled from 12.6 million tonnes (72%) in 1995, to 3.5 million tonnes (19%) in 2009.
In addition to the VBWF, other policies adopted as part of the national plan included:
- Waste Deposit Refund System (1991)
- Act on the Promotion of Saving and Recycling of Resources (1992)
- Extended Producer Responsibility initiatives (2003)
- Mandatory Food Waste Separation act (2005)
A dramatic reduction in the use of landfill has been achieved by increasing recycling and composting from 4.1 million tonnes (24%) in 1995 to 11.4 million tonnes (61%) in 2009, and by increasing capacity of waste to energy from 700,000 tonnes 4%, in 1995, to 3.8 million tons (20%) in 2009.
Some of the food waste bins also come with a special function that turns waste into compost. The compost in turn is used in communal gardens or donated to farms.
An English language Arirang News report on the initiative can be viewed below.
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