Refine recycling to address dumpster diving problems

While it is laudable to reduce waste and recycle whenever possible, we should do so without creating other issues (He goes dumpster diving to reduce waste, and Reducing waste with just a bit of imagination and courage; both published on Dec 9).

Those who dumpster dive must not scatter unwanted things all over public areas, as this probably amounts to a littering offence. Rejected perishables left in the open may also rot and attract pests.

Those who dumpster dive for perishables must also be aware that there is no guarantee the items will not cause them to fall sick.

Recycling bins could be more customised as we diversify recycling efforts. The bins should be locked and opened only when deposits or retrievals are made.

They should be placed as close as possible to residences, and under shelter to encourage recycling.

One recycling bin each could be provided for perishables, clothes and related accessories, glass, plastic and paper items. The bin for perishables should be cleared daily, while the others should be cleared bi-weekly. The collected items may be sorted at a collection centre and distributed to charity organisations.

This will enable our recycling efforts to be better organised and also mitigate the issues arising from irresponsible dumpster diving.

Annie Ng Lee Hoon (Ms)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 13, 2017, with the headline 'Refine recycling to address dumpster diving problems'. Print Edition | Subscribe