'Eco-conscious' Recycling Machine Gaining Prominence | Be Korea-savvy

‘Eco-conscious’ Recycling Machine Gaining Prominence


This photo provided by the Changwon city government shows a recycling machine that automatically sorts cans or plastic bottles.

This photo provided by the Changwon city government shows a recycling machine that automatically sorts cans or plastic bottles.

SEOUL, Nov. 24 (Korea Bizwire)As plastic waste continues to pose a greater threat to the environment, policy makers are rushing to come up with varied ideas to tackle the problem.

And the city of Changwon in South Gyeongsang Province has recently joined the growing ranks of local authorities installing recycling machines where you can make money by correctly separating recyclables.

The city government of Changwon has begun the operation of a recycling machine that automatically sorts cans or plastic bottles and goes through a pressing process.

The artificial intelligence (AI)-based machine will refuse to accept anything other than cans or plastic bottles.

The beauty of the system is that it encourages people to separate recyclables correctly, because the items being discarded have value and you can make money from the process.

When you put one plastic bottle into the machine, you get 10 points, and when your total points exceed 2,000, you can exchange them for cash, as a reimbursement for your eco-conscious behavior.

A local resident and his kid puts plastic bottles in Superbin's reverse vending machine in Gwangyang, South Jeolla Province in this photo provided by the city government.

A local resident and his kid puts plastic bottles in Superbin’s reverse vending machine in Gwangyang, South Jeolla Province in this photo provided by the city government.

Gwangyang, another city that has opted to run this system, is being recognized as a success story with favorable reviews among residents.

The city in South Jeolla Province said earlier this month that the recycling machine was used by 6,041 people from May of last year to September of this year, and 1.11 million cans and plastic bottles (22.3 tons) were collected, translating into 5.5 million won in cash incentives for eco-conscious citizens.

Those who want to participate in the campaign to make money by proper waste disposal should sign up to become members of ‘Superbin’, a social venture company and the developer of the recycling machine.

In the case of Changwon, recycling machines were installed last Saturday in public places across the city — near Uichang Sports Center, Meeting Square in Changwon Sports Park, Happo Sports Center, Masan Baseball Stadium and Jinhae-ru.

Jerry M. Kim (jerry_kim@koreabizwire.com)

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