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Waste Manag. 2011 Aug;31(8):1673-82. doi: 10.1016/j.wasman.2011.03.014. Epub 2011 Apr 19.

Municipal solid waste source-separated collection in China: A comparative analysis.

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Shanghai Key Laboratory of Urbanization and Ecological Restoration, East China Normal University, Shanghai 200062, China.


A pilot program focusing on municipal solid waste (MSW) source-separated collection was launched in eight major cities throughout China in 2000. Detailed investigations were carried out and a comprehensive system was constructed to evaluate the effects of the eight-year implementation in those cities. This paper provides an overview of different methods of collection, transportation, and treatment of MSW in the eight cities; as well as making a comparative analysis of MSW source-separated collection in China. Information about the quantity and composition of MSW shows that the characteristics of MSW are similar, which are low calorific value, high moisture content and high proportion of organisms. Differences which exist among the eight cities in municipal solid waste management (MSWM) are presented in this paper. Only Beijing and Shanghai demonstrated a relatively effective result in the implementation of MSW source-separated collection. While the six remaining cities result in poor performance. Considering the current status of MSWM, source-separated collection should be a key priority. Thus, a wider range of cities should participate in this program instead of merely the eight pilot cities. It is evident that an integrated MSWM system is urgently needed. Kitchen waste and recyclables are encouraged to be separated at the source. Stakeholders involved play an important role in MSWM, thus their responsibilities should be clearly identified. Improvement in legislation, coordination mechanisms and public education are problematic issues that need to be addressed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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