I'm pretty well-versed in the whole "ding ding ding" = bring out your trash, but I wanted a little more info, especially on if I should separate my paper, bottles, and cardboard beforehand?
A lady comes by every day to take/buy such materials, but I nearly always miss her. Then, 'round about 5ish, the sanitation people come down the street. Lately, I've had random people on my sidewalk literally dash up to take the trash from my hands. Then they start plowing through, collecting anything of value. Guess my rep as a wasteful Tay has spread.
At any rate, I was wondering what the rest of TNH crowd does.
My family & myself do the same thing as kparsons does. We put all of the recyclable items in a separate bag. Just leave them outside right before the "ding ding ding" time. Those recycle collectors would appreciate it very much. Most of them come to Hanoi from the countrysides. They try to earn their little $ from selling these recyclable items.
thanks for the responses. when i first moved here, i separated items, mainly because I was still in recycle mode. then my landlord chastised me, saying no need, no need! now, as I am more aware of what's going on, i'll use your method.
another quick question - I know plastic bottles, newspapers, and cardboard are popular for people who make money from collecting recyclables, but what about glass jars and aluminum cans?
Yes, anything can be recycled - wires, styrofoam, cardboard. I see the recycling women on my street wading through the food scraps looking for things to recycle everyday. I always separate the recycling from the food so they don't have to do this. It's not common in Vietnam but I think it should be!
Our neighbourhood boss's wife loses the plot with us every time we give the recycling ladies our cans / tins / bottles etc. In fact we have even seen her get quite physical with the countryside women when they come to our door to collect. Because we live in "her" neighbourhood she seems to think she has the right to all of our rubbish. Her porch is filled to the brim with recyclables which she periodically sells off to the poor countryside folk (most os cleared by Tet). Meanwhile she drives round on her Piaggio, scouring the alleys for spoils. Our landlord laughed when we said we'd rather give our rubbish to those most in need. A strange place we live in....and here we all are engaged in a debate over empty beer cans!
my landlord's traditional family house still stands next to ours. i don't know why this happens, but a few minutes after i put my trash out for pick-up, the grandma that hangs out there comes and snatches it up and puts it in front of the family house with her stuff. it's usually loses it's original bag and ends up mixed with her trash.
i don't get it. maybe she's digging for recyclables?
There are more and more Hanoian interested in 3R, though the sanitation people said everything are mixed later.
For recycle, several Vietnamese volunteer groups in Hanoi are trying to collect and decorate "dustbin" from throw-away things. If any of you want to support this group with your materials, have a look here: http://myhanoigroup.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1344
You could send me message for supporting these volunteers
I like the concept of "I'm throwing this out but if you want it I'll sell it to you". My previous landlady used to crack when I gave old magazines to the paper lady without taking money off her per kilo.
What I really want to know is can I get paid every time I flush the crapper? I could make a fortune after beer/curry nights!
Waste segregation is really something that we should consider especially in the light of the world's environmental problems and the opportunity to help others in their means of livelihood (i.e., like the ladies who collect the so-called "recyclables"). It's the first step to REDUCE, RECYCLE AND REUSE OUR WASTE (3R).
There are 3 types of household wastes (1) the biodegradables like fruit peelings,leftover food, (2) the recyclables or those which could still be put to good use in other ways like old glass and plastic bottles, soda cans, paper, cartons (these are the items collected by the ladies in our neighborhoods) and (3) residuals or those that really ought to be thrown away and discarded because they really can't be of use anymore (like candy wrapper, used tissue, napkin).
I separate my wastes based on the 3 categories above. Ideally, the biodegradables should be turned into compost but because I have a small place and it's hard to do, I fail to do this. :-( But just the same I separate the biodegradable stuff to make it easy for the collecting ladies of recyclables in our neighborhood. Imagine, if I thoughtlessly just mix my "smelly wet leftover garlic and onion and spoiled rice" with my dry old paper, cartons? So I separate/segregate at source to make it easier for others who make a living out of my waste. This is also to make sure that recyclables are treated as such. Because if my cartons and paper are wet and smelly, the ladies may just throw them away and treat them as residuals, instead of as recyclables. I throw away the residuals and biodegradables and give them to the garbage collector (with the big cart) who comes at 6-7PM in my area.
After I have accumulated a sufficient amount of recyclables (usually 2 plastic bags), I give them to the ladies in my neighborhood. Luckily there are many of them around where I live. Or when I meet them on the streets near my house, I postpone going my way first and ask them first to come to my house so I could give my "package". It's a hassle really if you think about it. But I feel good after I've done my share in helping a little in our envi problems and giving some extra income for the ladies in my neighborhood. Not much but the effort's there.