Portimonenses separated more waste and diverted tons of food scraps from the landfill

The selective collection of food scraps began last year, in March, in a pilot area covering 13836 households

EMARP (Empresa Municipal de Águas e Residudos de Portimão) collected, in 2022, 29373 tons of undifferentiated waste and sent 533 tons of leftover food to the Algar Organic Valorization Center, responsible for managing and transforming this matter into 100% fertilizer Natural.

«With regard to selective multi-material collection, last year, compared to 2019, the pre-pandemic period, there was an increase of 9,02%, with the people of Porto separating 2017 tons of plastic and metal, 2897 tons of glass and 2612 tons of paper», says EMARP.

Although Portimão is one of the municipalities in the Algarve that recycles the most, with a rate of 21,5%, «there has been an undesirable increase in undifferentiated waste sent to landfills, which represent 78,5% of the total waste production in the municipality », he adds.

Combating waste and diverting waste from landfills, which require more and more space and energy, with higher associated environmental and financial costs, is the main objective of the Selective Collection of Organics system, based on the principles of circularity.

According to EMARP, the «successful implementation of the new system depends on the adoption of the new habit that aims at the separation of food remains, which occupy about 40% of the undifferentiated garbage bucket of each accommodation and the correct disposal, without plastic, in the brown container intended for that category of waste'.

To this end, EMARP continues to appeal to citizens to participate and to provide a 7-litre bucket free of charge to be incorporated into each home.

The selective collection of food scraps began last year, in March, in a pilot area covering 13836 households.

During the nine months, the project made it possible to divert 533 tons of food waste from the landfill, coming from 5 institutions (IPSS), 17 schools and 53 commercial establishments, which adhered to the door-to-door collection system.

With regard to local collection, based on the number of 7-liter buckets delivered, it is estimated that around 1400 households will be involved.

Of the 144 equipment for the collection of organics, installed on public roads, next to surface containers and Ecological Islands, 10 units have an intelligent deposit system, which is already in operation and will allow, through an electronic device of controlled access and automatic reading (RFID), create information to evaluate the results according to the quality, quantity and population characteristics of the municipality.