Garbage sorting since the introduction of new rules on July 1 has been better than expected, a legislator said on Tuesday, though it was still wanting in many places.
Wei Dong, a member of the Standing Committee of Shanghai People’s Congress and the urban construction and environmental protection committee, joined his fellow deputies in an unannounced inspection of garbage sorting in four Shanghai districts on Tuesday.
“Considering the gap in garbage sorting between Shanghai and some foreign countries, we can say that our city is well underway to close the gap with more effective enforcement of the rules than we actually expected,” he said.
Besides strict law enforcement, more awareness campaigns and more effective communication between the government and residents are called for, Wei said.
“The residential complexes where garbage sorting has been in force for months and even for years are doing better than the rest, and this means that with time and effort, all of us can eventually do better,” Wei said.
He and his colleagues, along with urban management officers, inspected a number of different places in the city including colleges and universities, office buildings, residential complexes and hotels.
At Shanghai University’s Jiading District campus, some garbage bins near student dorms were not marked with the types of garbage they’re supposed to take, while in a bin for dry garbage, there was food waste.
A dorm supervisor, a woman surnamed Xu, said she and her colleagues are responsible for supervising garbage sorting of the students from 5:30pm to 11pm every day, and the job is left to the university’s campus cleaning team during the day.
At the Jiacheng Mingyuan residential complex, also in Jiading, a bin near the main entrance marked for harmful waste was filled with recyclable plastic and glass bottles. A guard said it wasn’t that people didn’t know what harmful waste was, just that they simply used the bin for other types.
At the Shenquan Huayuan residential complex in Baoshan District, Wang Qun, the property manager, said the garbage terminal is now open 24/7 after the residents complained they couldn’t meet the scheduled garbage-sorting times from 7am to 9am and 6pm to 8pm.
“We agreed but we also told them that in this case they would have to watch their garbage sorting very well,” she said.
She said people were able to sort their garbage, but agreed that the terminal should be under more frequent supervision than in mornings and evenings.