Mayor's Hope Journal

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  • Seoul Aims to be an Exemplary City in Resource Recycling.
    [Mayor Park Won Soon's Hope Journal 178]

    SMG 1132
  • Recently, Seoul Metropolitan Government announced its aim to be the world’s No. 1 city in resource recycling by 2030. The aim carries the Zero Waste, Seoul 2030 Plan in cooperation with public institutions, large distribution centers, and schools.

    At present, Freiburg, Germany leads other cities in the world with a 66% waste recycling rate. Seoul Metropolitan Government plans to raise its waste recycling rate to that level by 2030 from the current 45.9%. Toward that end, recyclable waste racks will be installed in residential areas. For certain recyclable wastes, monetary compensation will be paid.

    Volunteer senior citizens will carry items collected in the recyclable waste racks installed in residential areas to a recyclable waste center. The money earned by selling such recyclable waste will be paid to the senior citizens. Such will produce the effect of creating jobs.
    Recyclable waste racks will also be installed at convenience stores, pharmacies, and fast food stores where lots of recyclable wastes are generated. The night recyclable waste collection time will be set for working couples. Seoul Metropolitan Government will help senior citizens voluntarily assume the role of collecting recyclable waste and carrying it to a local waste handling center from a cooperative and pay monetary compensation for the waste they collected.
    The cooperatives will work to provide a stable work environment for such senior citizens and find ways to guarantee a certain level of income to help them lead a self-reliant life. The senior citizens can also be entrusted to serve as environment watchmen. The cooperatives will be set up voluntarily at a local level, and city and district offices will provide support, such as the relevant education, work clothes, and handcarts.

    Monetary compensation will be paid to such voluntary collectors of recyclable waste (waste vinyl, bottles, and Styrofoam goods). Eco City, a social business set up by Seoul Metropolitan Government, engages in the collection of small-sized household appliances (3,000 tons a year) and cell phones (300,000). At present, district offices spend 14.3 billion won a year for the production of bags used for the pay-per- waste bag system. about 7.2 billion won is expected to be saved with a 50% increase in the rate of waste recycling. it will also help households save about 51.3 billion won a year in connection with their purchase of such bags.

    the invigoration of waste recycling will bring about several advantages: solving the problem of disposal of waste by burial, budget saving, and creation of jobs. such efforts by seoul metropolitan government require the people’s participation. together, let’s make seoul the world’s no. 1 city in resource recycling!