Lazy trash-throwers, beware: Guangdong will follow Shanghai to design and implement waste-sorting rules.
According to local media, the provincial government is aiming to establish a comprehensive waste-sorting system by 2020. Higher standards will be applied to Guangzhou and Shenzhen, the two pilot cities of the waste-sorting program, to establish a world-class sorting system, at least as good as Hong Kong’s and Macau’s.
Many challenges remain to be resolved, however, including transportation, classification and disposal, not to mention recycling systems. The government will build from the community level upward, apparently, and increase the awareness of waste sorting by education and propaganda.
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Shenzhen is building the world’s largest waste-to-energy plant that once operational will process up to 5,000 tonnes of waste each day.
The process captures heat from incinerating unwanted waste materials, which drives a turbine to generate electricity. China has the world’s largest installed waste-to-energy capacity, with more than 300 plants in operation. This capacity has increased annually by 26% over the past five years, compared with just 4% average growth in capacity in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries.
Once constructed, Shenzhen’s new plant will combust roughly a third of the city’s daily domestic waste. It will also generate some renewable energy via 40,000 square meters of solar panels on its roof.