Jeju residents will now be charged for food waste by weight. Photo courtesy Jeju Special Self Governing Province
The pay-as-you-throw food waste management system has been in effect nationwide since Jan 1. Jeju residents living in apartment buildings or residential areas of more than 50 houses are required to dispose of food waste using the RFID (Radio Frequency Identification Reader) system. Those living in areas with no access to RFID bins will use plastic food waste bags and dispose of waste at a “Clean House.”
Charges will be 22 won per kilogram when using the RFID card, and 76 won per kilogram for restaurants and other large-scale establishments. Yellow food-waste bags can be purchased at convenience stores for: 36 won for two-liter bags; 54 won for three liters; 90 won for five liters; 180 won for 10 liters; and 500 won for 20 liters.
The system has been introduced to reduce waste and save resources. Waste that cannot be composted - such as toothpicks and chopsticks - must be disposed of in the white combustible-waste bags, bought from convenience stores.
The provincial government is monitoring Clean Houses and even visiting people’s homes to ensure compliance. In some villages, locals are working cooperatively and some have volunteered to be “keepers” of the Clean House. Community leaders, local government officials and members of the public have formed teams to distribute disposal bags and publicize the new policy.
Government officials stress the new system is not voluntary and failure to comply will result in fines starting at 10 thousand won. The provincial government has stepped up environmental policies as it seeks to become a green city and reduce the province’s carbon footprint.
ⓒ Jeju Weekly 2009 (http://www.jejuweekly.com)
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