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Sunday, February 04, 2007

Recycling in Korea

Korea takes recycling very seriously. You will never get a carrier bag without a.) asking for it and b.) paying 50-100 won: approximately 5-10 cents. When I take out a coffee, I pay a 50 won fee for the cup.

South Korea, with a population of 48,846,823 (July 2006 est.), has a real landfill problem.

I pay a $30 monthly maintenance fee at my building, and on Sundays my landlady opens our bags of garbage and separates the recyclables. They are picked up by men pushing carts called "like-cars", in Hangul. Min laughed when he told me the direct translation.

The material is transported to a depot in the city. In 2003, close to three-quarters of all South Korean waste was recycled. Not bad.

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