Mon, Dec 10, 2018 - Page 5 News List

FEATURE: Slow recycler Turkey seeks better uses for its trash

AFP, ISTANBUL, Turkey

“We have not had garbage trucks at the presidential complex for a long time,” she said.

At a sorting facility on the outskirts of Istanbul, organic waste is separated, processed and used as fertilizer in parks and gardens throughout the city, while non-organic materials, such as glass, plastics and metals, are recycled.

However, Ibrahim Halil Turkeri, the city’s recycling chief, said that “greater responsibility falls to individuals.”

“If the waste is classified at its source, cleaner waste will reach our facility and factories, and they will have better value as secondary raw materials, and all will have been recycled,” he said.

Ahmet Hamdi Zembil, environment engineer at waste management company ISTAC, said gas from burning organic waste can be transformed into electricity.

However, he added that classifying at source was crucial so that synthetic waste was not mixed in.

“We have disposed of 7 million tonnes of waste here over the past year and produced 400 million kilowatt-hours of electricity,” he said.

Back in Sishane, Gercek slotted her plastic bottles into the machine, realizing to her chagrin that only 0.03 liras are given for each can or bottle, meaning that she would need to recycle 87 cans or bottles for a single free trip that normally costs 2.6 liras (US$0.50).

“But still, it is a start. I believe this system will get better,” she said.

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