The strategy document ‘Enhancing Circular Economy Perspectives – Plastic Waste Management Strategy and Action Plan for Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation’ has been finalised and approved by the city. The Municipal Commissioner, GHMC, acknowledged the support of the Institute for Global Environment Strategies (IGES), along with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) on Environmental Technologies (CCET), Japan, and ICLEI South Asia for preparing the strategy document, which will act as a guide to ensure holistic management of plastic waste in Hyderabad.
The document identifies five core strategies that enable the adoption of a circular economy: recycling, reducing and reusing plastics for new products; influencing consumer behaviour; and developing better waste management practices at the community level. The recommendations were finalised after an analysis of good practices and discussions with all major stakeholders. It provides solutions to reduce the inflow of plastic waste, thereby helping to save the costs involved in the collection, sorting, processing, recycling of waste, and landfill siting by the city administration.
As a next step, ICLEI South Asia will facilitate the setting up of Reverse Vending Machines (RVMs) as a pilot intervention to streamline and enhance the collection and transportation of clean PET bottles and aluminium cans. It is hoped that the installation of such RVMs at strategic locations, such as shopping malls, food courts, bus terminals, monuments and other tourist locations, will help reduce littering and improve the authorised collection and processing of PET items and aluminium cans. The users will receive rewards from outlets that have tie-ups with the provider of the RVMs. The whole system will ensure that the collected plastic waste is sent to authorised recyclers for fibre manufacturing, thereby reducing the dependency on the informal sector.
RVMs will also be used for IEC and awareness generation purposes, thereby sensitising the public in reducing the use of plastics. The vendor will be responsible for operating and maintaining the RVMs for seven years, while ICLEI South Asia will be monitoring the whole process.