Most of us are well aware of the filthy reality of landfills that we may have come across in the outskirts of our cities.
The things that we consume need to be dumped. In earlier times, this wasn’t difficult: people would simply dump the waste into the soil or burn the waste generated. With different kinds of plastics and metals making their way into our lives, unfortunately, now it is not as easy a task to dump waste as before.
A small town in the Katsuura district of Japan called Kamikatsu has found a way out of this problem. The residents have developed a strategy to produce almost zero waste.
The Trials of Twenty Years!
The town set out to adopt a new waste management strategy twenty years back with a vision to achieve zero-waste producing status. The residents collect their waste products in a central waste collection centre wherein the waste is segregated into 45 different categories. This exercise helps in recovering 80% of the resources. The residents were initially hesitant to adopt this strategy but later realized the benefits of waste segregation.
The efforts of the residents motivated even local businesses to adopt waste reduction techniques. The town has come up with a zero waste accreditation scheme to bring more and more businesses on board. Visitors from other towns and cities come in to learn about the city’s program.
Impact beyond the Expected
Apart from helping conserve the environment, the initiative has created opportunities for the residents. The arrival of the people from outside the town to learn about the initiative has improved the business of local hotels and restaurants. Many residents work at second-hand shops to manufacture recycled products. The residents are able to recycle a whopping 81% of the town waste.
Modifying our Habits
Following the 3R’s (Recycle-Reuse-Reduce) in our life isn’t as big a deal as we consider it. They not just bring benefits to the environment but also bring monetary benefits by ensuring that you do not burn a hole in your pocket by buying something that you can already arrange from what you already possess. What little changes can you bring in your lifestyle to tread on the path of Kamikatsu?
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