Say goodbye to the roadside containers in Barcelona?
More than ten years ago, Barcelona was at the forefront of garbage collection. Now with this new project, can they regain the mantle?
As part of the city’s zero-waste strategy, Barcelona is phasing out roadside containers and recently launched a door-to-door collection in the Sarria district. This move is part of a medium-term plan to transfer 1.6 million residents of the city to effective waste separation collection.
More than ten years ago, Barcelona took the lead in the separate collection of biological waste, the first of the major cities on the Iberian Peninsula to do so, but since then, the city's separate collection rate has remained at around 35%. Although these results far exceed the Spanish average, the city council is committed to moving towards zero waste and reversing these poor results.
The old center of Sarrià is a small street and square island in the center of Barcelona. It used to be the remains of an independent town and seems to be the ideal place to test house-to-house collections. As of mid-February 2018, their 10,000 residents are mimicking normal conditions in other latitudes: garbage collection calendars, personalization of sorting responsibilities, and limited collection of residues. Another innovation introduced is that there will be no special packaging collection, but plastic and metal, including various packaging and other plastic and metal waste, to simplify the classification task for citizens.
Through this initiative, the City Council expects to quickly achieve more than 60% of the separate collection in the area, and reduce the amount of garbage generated to less than 1.2 kg of garbage per resident per day. More importantly, this move should pave the way for the implementation of door-to-door sorting in cities and other regions and regions. As the EU’s fourth most densely populated city, Barcelona’s move will help Milan break the myth that door-to-door sorting cannot operate in large cities in Southern Europe.
Zero Waste Europe welcomes Barcelona’s first step towards zero waste and encourages the city council to quickly introduce similar models in other parts of the city.
Update: first result two weeks later
Only two weeks after launching the door-to-door collection alone, the city has already seen good results. Separate collection of Sarrià has risen from 19% to 54%, mainly due to the surge in biological waste collection. In this sense, the weekly collection of organic matter in the area increased from 700 kg to 7,348 kg, while the pollution of biological waste decreased from 13.6% to 0.9%. Zero Waste Europe congratulates the city of Barcelona on its success in the first two weeks and encourages the council to launch a similar system throughout the city.
"Zero Waste Europe welcomes Barcelona's first step towards zero waste"
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