Technological watch

An overview of the municipal solid waste management modes and innovations in Shanghai, China

Municipal solid waste (MSW) management and recycling has become an emerging issue in developing countries. Shanghai, the largest megacity in China, is well-known nationwide due to leading China’s MSW separation and recycling. Therefore, this paper introduces the Shanghai mode for MSW management and its current situation to enrich existing MSW management studies. Results show that the total generation volume of MSW and amount of MSW generation per capita were 9.00 million tons and 372.16 kg in 2017, increased approximately eight-fold and four-fold compared with the data in 1978, respectively. The MSW treatment rate reached 100% since 2014, with incineration rate increased to 48.56% in 2017. The cost of MSW management after implementing MSW sorting regulation is increased to 985 CNY/ton, including 390 CNY/ton of MSW sorting cost. Then three key features and innovative MSW management modes, namely, mandatory MSW sorting legislation, Green Account program, and the Combined Network program are introduced. Meanwhile, two main challenges are urgent to be responded, including inadequate collecting vehicles and limited wet waste treatment capacity. Finally, policy recommendations on strengthening MSW recycling process, constructing complete terminal treatment industry, and making systematic policies were provided to respond existing challenges.

This project has been co-funded with the support of the LIFE financial instrument of the European Union [LIFE17 ENV/ES/000438] Life programme

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Last update: 2020-07-14