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Macao lags behind when it comes to household recycling

The Environmental Advisory Committee’s Wong Chi Choi says the SAR should look to its neighbours for inspiration when it comes to handing household waste.

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PUBLISHED

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Less than 1 minute Minutes

A member of the Environmental Advisory Committee believes both the government and public should be doing more to combat the build-up of household waste in Macao, TDM reports.

Wong Chi Choi said it was high-time the government promoted household recycling, something that is – by and large – not done in the SAR. Rather, households collect all their rubbish together and dump it by the bagful in neighbourhood waste disposal facilities.

Wong noted that many mainland provinces had started to implement household recycling, along with Hong Kong. “I think maybe we can learn from Hong Kong’s experience and immediately look into the matter,” he said.

There are some recycling initiatives already underway in the SAR. The Environmental Bureau has encouraged recycling in public areas through installing waste sorting bins across Macao, and launched schemes that reward people who recycle the likes of electronic equipment and plastic bottles.

[See more: 5 places to donate used clothing in Macao]

According to the Environmental Protection Bureau’s State of the Environment of Macau 2022 report, local residents threw out 1.77 kilograms of solid waste each day in 2022. That’s more than the people of Hong Kong (1.53 kilograms), and more than double what those in Guangzhou disposed of.

Local environmentalists have called for financial incentives for residents to recycle the likes of paper, metals and glass, while conceding that recycling first has to be made more convenient in order for it to be effective.

The urgency of Macao’s waste disposal issues is reflected in the fact that its current landfill is nearly full. The situation has prompted the government to controversially consider disposing of construction waste by using it to build an artificial island off scenic Hac Sa Beach.

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