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Waste sep­a­ra­tion at source, which came into ef­fect for landed res­i­den­tial homes in 2015, will be en­forced for com­mer­cial es­tab­lish­ments in Jan­uary next year. This means that es­tab­lish­ments such as ho­tels, shop­ping cen­tres, shops and even of­fices, will have to pre­pare their waste at source to en­sure that re­cy­clable waste such as pa­per, glass and plas­tic are sep­a­rated ac­cord­ingly. How much of an im­pact will this move have on busi­nesses as a whole? Do you fore­see any hic­cups in its im­ple­men­ta­tion? I don’t think it will be a big suc­cess yet. Although the di­rec­tive has been in place all this while for res­i­den­tial ar­eas, in some states, en­force­ment is still lack­ing. I live in Se­ta­pak, and I’m em­bar­rassed to ad­mit that we do not sep­a­rate our waste. I keep wait­ing for the day when we are ac­tu­ally rep­ri­manded or taken to task for it but yet, noth­ing so far. I’m sure that day will come when I will be com­pelled to sep­a­rate my waste but it won’t be to­day, or even to­mor­row for that mat­ter.

AZIM AB­DUL­LAH What is frus­trat­ing is that while I sep­a­rate my waste, I don’t see my neigh­bours do­ing it. How do I know this? Easy. I take out sev­eral bags and la­bel them ac­cord­ingly. There’s one for pa­per, one for plas­tic, etc. But my neigh­bours all wheel out one gi­ant bag, which ob­vi­ously mean that noth­ing is be­ing done on their end.

It’s frus­trat­ing when you seem to be the only one who is try­ing to do the right thing.

TRINI YEOH I think this will be more ef­fec­tive than the ini­tia­tive in res­i­den­tial ar­eas. Busi­nesses are way eas­ier to su­per­vise and they stand to lose a lot more if they are pe­nalised. If the au­thor­i­ties do this right, we could see a huge re­duc­tion in non-re­cy­clable waste which will hope­fully lead to less space be­ing taken up in our al­ready chok­ing land­fills.

HANNA ISMAILI This shouldn’t be too hard to en­force at busi­nesses such as eateries. I know some places al­ready do this. Some fast food restau­rants I know have also de­cided to do this of their own ac­cord. I find that when places pro­vide sep­a­rate bins for dif­fer­ent types of waste, Malaysians will gen­er­ally go along and throw rub­bish ac­cord­ingly. But at home, it’s a dif­fer­ent story al­to­gether.


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