Shanghai Releases New Garbage Sorting Guidelines

By Urban Family, June 14, 2019

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This article originally appeared on our sister website, Urban Family Shanghai.


By Urban Family

The new garbage sorting regulations will take effect in Shanghai starting July 1. With less than one month left, many civilians are still confused about the classification of the four different types of trash. Thankfully, authorities have released an official guideline to clarify the new rules, reports Shine.

The guideline, published by the Shanghai Greenery and Public Sanitation Bureau, provides a rather clear definition on the four kinds of waste: recyclable waste, hazardous waste, household food waste and residual waste.

Hazardous waste, as the name suggests, includes assorted poisonous materials like used batteries, light bulbs, expired medicines, paint, mercury thermometers and pesticides.

Image via The Paper

Household food waste – which is tranlated to ‘wet trash’ in Chinese – refers to food leftovers, rotten food, pet food, fruit peels, remains of TCM herbs and flowers.


Image via The Paper

Paper, plastic, glass, metal and textiles are counted as recyclable waste.


Image via The Paper

The definition of residual waste is a little confusing. Anything that is not listed above belongs in this category.


Image via The Paper

As specific as the new guideline is, residents still have a hard time sorting trash correctly and are finding it challenging to memorize them all. For instance, both plastic bottles and bubble tea or coffee cups are plastic materials. However, the former falls to the category of recyclable waste and the latter belongs to residual waste. To save the hassle, some netizens have come up with their own ways to sort trash.

“We should do this from a pig’s angle,” commented one netizen. “Those edible for pigs are household food waste. Those even pigs don’t want to eat are residual waste. If a pig consumes something and dies of it, then something must be hazardous waste. Those which can be sold and the money we gain can be used to purchase pigs are recyclable waste.”

The new regulation will go into effect on July 1. Those who do not sort their trash properly will be fined RMB200 (USD28.90).

[Cover image via The Paper]


This article was originally published by our sister magazine Urban Family Shanghai. For more articles like this, visit the Urban Family website, or follow the Urban Family WeChat account (ID: urbanfamilyshanghai).

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