An automated waste collection system for government-operated flats in Singapore aims to encourage recycling with 24 'outdoor disposal inlets', in addition to refuse chutes installed in the properties.
Residents in Yuhua, Singapore, throw their rubbish down the refuse chutes, which travels to a chamber, where a sensor is triggered once the containers in the refuse chamber is full. The waste is then transported through a series of underground pipes to a centralised bin where it is then stored in sealed containers. Once the containers are full, trucks arrive to transport them to incineration plants. The scheme is currently being rolled out across six blocks of flats, with a further 32 blocks also expected to join the scheme by the end of the year.
This is all part of the Housing and Development Board’s Greenprint scheme in Yuhua which aims to create more sustainable homes. Yuhua is being used to help determine the methods feasibility in existing building, including resident’s receptiveness and the implications of undertaking major retrofitting.
The new method should lead to fewer pests and less unpleasant odours, creating a cleaner environment, whilst also reducing the manpower needed to operate the waste collection system. It is also designed to help encourage recycling, with 24 recycling points located throughout the estate.
The potential of such a scheme to incentivise recycling is severely limited, however. It remains vastly easier for residents to dispose of waste through the chutes, where it will not be recycled, than to take it to a refuse point outside their building.