Friday, October 23, 2009

an organized mess

the newspapers in denmark are full of environment-related stories in the lead-up to the COP15 climate meeting here in copenhagen in december, so living a more green life is at the forefront of all of our thoughts. but in all honesty, denmark is pretty far ahead on that front. it is, after all, the home of modern wind technology (think vestas). but for me, one of the most tangible signs of denmark's commitment to the environment is how organized our dumps are.

when we went last sunday, i snapped a few pictures to show you.


husband and mig unload stuff from the ancient toyota
ancient toyota might need to be recycled itself.
maybe in the large metal container?


one for newspapers, telephone books, etc.
and another for bottles and jars


put your old carpets here.


small burnables.
keep it under 1 meter, please.


large burnables (tho' this one was closed - there was another one).


small metal things.
it's here that husband found the fabulous sewing machine.


appliances


clothing donations
and yes, that was a bag of old linens in front of that one.
and maybe i did appropriate a couple of choice patterns.


mattresses and other feathery furniture.


separate containers for ceramics and tiles, cement, marble, stone, bricks

and i didn't even get pictures of the whole area where you can put old paint cans and batteries and electrical appliances and tires and garden debris and insulation. it's amazingly organized and there are little guys in orange suits patrolling and just waiting for you to accidentally put a ceramic flowerpot in with the glass, so they can yell at you. and odin forbid you try to put something longer than a meter in the small burnables.

but it makes me feel better to go there and to separate things and know that they're being recycled (tho' to be honest, i don't really know where they go). in the spring, you can go get rich compost for your garden, as much as you can carry away for free. it's the result of the trash they collect from our houses, where we separate into green and non-green trash. and i know that the burnables are burned in a big central place where they then capture the heat and use it to heat water for the fjernvarm system that heats much of copenhagen.

i like that the environment is the central topic around here at the moment and i like feeling that i'm doing my part by separating our trash and taking it to the organized dump.

19 comments:

Barb said...

I've never seen anything like this in the US! Usually, there are only containers for glass, cardboard/paper, and metals (like small cans, etc.). I'm so impressed.

SE'LAH... said...

trash to treasure, right?

that sewing machine is a wonderful find.

great recycling plant.

rayfamily said...

This is great! I wish we had something that comprehensive here. Other than the basics, there are occasional mass collection days, but only for certain hazardous items. Very cool place!

beth said...

I always feel good doing my part too....although we are not that organized here in the states...well, at least here in madison....

Char said...

definitely not that organized here

Just Jules said...

you were not over exaggerating the organization of it all. But how do you bag your trash? I mean you can not have that many bins around. You can't possibly going to have a batter basket and a 1 meter long burnable basket. How do you do that part?

spudballoo said...

oh this looks exactly like our waste centre too, even the steps are the same! Plus we have the Waste Guys on patrol too...

My favourite is the battery recycling bins....lots of colours and shapes, aching fo a photo!

Hang on, Bertie wants to type:

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Very interesting Bertie, I thought so too.

x

spudballoo said...

oh this looks exactly like our waste centre too, even the steps are the same! Plus we have the Waste Guys on patrol too...

My favourite is the battery recycling bins....lots of colours and shapes, aching fo a photo!

Hang on, Bertie wants to type:

iungvcx cfbhjkl;pytfdvhuioiuhth

Very interesting Bertie, I thought so too.

x

julochka said...

jules--at home, we have two trash bins--one for green (biodegradable) and one for non-biodegradable. plus, we have a huge basket for newspapers (since we subscribe to 2 on a daily basis). this dump is where you go when you have borrowed a little trailer or filled the trunk of your car, so you trot all that stuff around to each container, but you don't necessarily need different bins for each one at home.

this isn't the dump where the bits that are collected by garbage trucks at the house go. i've never been there. :-)

Elizabeth said...

The løsseplads is definitly one of the best organized places. I think it is great they put so much effort on recycling. We live within 10 minutes from the løsseplads but still we have two large containers, one for paper and one for glass in our street. So there is hardly a need for saving things up since you pass them so often.

Lisa-Marie said...

The dump here in Scotland is organised in a similar way - it's good to be able to compare!

This weekend, I'll be campaigning for Oxfam's cliate change policies, which are aimed toward our prime minister attending the very cliate meeting of which you speak, and taking positive steps for the UK!

*jean* said...

ooo that is wonderful! in MN we have pretty good recycling but in many other states they do not have anything more than newspaper. I just saw a story on the news about San Francisco, they are making it a law that restaurants recycle their wet garbage and they make the most beautiful compost for the vineyards!! that makes me so happy, restaurants throw away soooo much food....so things may be looking up!!! hope we can get our restaurants here in MN to do that....i am still jealous about your beautiful sewing machine...

Abby said...

i read an article last night about how companies around the world are trying to acquire fuel from algae. algae? whatever works!
i guess it is found everywhere.

Magpie said...

Looks like a HUGE dump! Cool.

I love the dump in our town - it's like a small version of yours - bins for paper, plastic, metal, batteries, books, towels (for pet shelters), tires. And there's the Take It Or Leave It - for swapping things that are useful - I always find stuff that I want there.

And we can get free mulch and compost, or pay a small fee to have it delivered.

Love the dump.

Nanodance said...

Wow! That is really cool. Good to know how it can be done. The US of A is really behind.

Marion Williams-Bennett said...

Seeing these pictures and hearing others say that they have similar places makes me so happy for the earth! Our recycling is taken away at curbside, but it's kind of a mystery as to where it goes and how it all ends up.

I love that there is a place to donate clothes!!

Cretin said...

WOw..... this is awesome and very organized. We seriously need something like this in India... :)

Jelica said...

this is fantastic! it looks even better than austria where--it seemed to me--they somehow manage to recycle just about everything. our recycling here is much more basic...

Bee said...

The UK dump is pretty well organized too . . . although you can't get COMPOST from it. (We keep throwing things on the compost pile, but we never get around to "turning" it.)

I like the way the local citizenry helps the recycle effort by hauling some choice bits way . . .