Illustration by Lyn Ong.
Illustration by Lyn Ong.

The Minister for Urban Well-being, Housing and and Local Government has announced that Malaysia will once again attempt to implement a system for sorting household waste.

According to The Malaysian Insider, Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan has said that it will be compulsory for Malaysians to separate their different types of rubbish from September next year. Categories could include paper, plastic, food waste and glass.

This plan follows on from previous initiatives to get Malaysians to separate solid waste; which were later abandoned. Currently, Taiwan is one of the few countries in the world to implement compulsory household recycling in its cities. Other cities include Brussels and certain parts of London.

A survey undertaken by Putrajaya found that urban Malaysians produce about 450gms more waste each day than the average (800gms). Earlier this year, Poskod.MY reported on the shocking surge in food waste in recent years, with spikes around festival periods.

The new system, if successful, could get more Malaysians thinking about the amount of solid waste that’s produced by their household. Currently, there is no consistent way for people to recycle: some neighbourhoods have recycling points, but others don’t.

Waste management has become a contentious issue in recent years, with the unpopular proposal to build an incinerator in Kepong being one example. According to a report from the National Solid Waste Management Department, the Federal Government aims to cut the amount of waste going to landfills by 40% by the year 2020.

Related posts:

Malaysia’s Taste For Waste

Tetra Pak creates a recycling map of Malaysia