Borealis has announced that Project Stop, the project that it co-founded with Systemiq in 2017 to address the problem of waste leaking into the environment in Indonesia, has reached a number of significant milestones.
The company reported that by the end of 2022, the programme has provided access to waste management services to over 300,000 people across three cities in Indonesia — to most for the first time —, built five waste processing facilities and enabled the collection of more than 40,000 tons of waste (including more than 5,000 tons of plastics).
When it was launched, the project aimed to:
- reduce waste leakage into the environment by providing affordable, reliable and formal waste collection to all citizens;
- promote resource efficiency and circularity that transform waste into feedstock for recycling;
- achieve economic sustainability;
- benefit the communities through improved public health and creating permanent job opportunities in waste and material sorting sectors.
The programme’s first city partnership started in 2017 in Muncar, a coastal fishing community in Banyuwangi Regency, East Java, Indonesia. Active support from Project STOP for the Muncar waste management system ended in February 2022 and to date, the local government authorities are continuing to operate the system successfully. Just last week, management of the waste management system in Pasuruan Regency, East Java, was handed over to the local authorities. The project continues to operate in the Jembrana Regency in Bali, and has started its expansion into the Banyuwangi Regency, East Java, with the construction of a new material recovery facility (MRF).
Scaling up waste management and recycling solutions is challenging in Indonesia because of the financing required to build and operate waste management systems, and the need for large-scale community behaviour changes and skills development amongst waste system operators. Organic waste and some types of plastic waste (particularly multi-layer plastics made from multiple types of plastics) have very low value for recycling or composting. So far, the project has achieved participation rates ranging from 50% to 87% depending on the location, and on average slightly more than 30% of non- organic recyclable materials are sent for recycling across all partner communities.