Public Awareness of Waste Management & Waste Sorting
Humans will certainly produce garbage every day. If not managed and sorted properly, the garbage buried in landfill is very potential to spread disease and damage the environment. Until 2020, the percentage of people sorting garbage still ranges from 11-13%, meaning most people still do not understand how crucial it is to sort out the waste.
The media plays an important role in educating the public about this waste. But unfortunately, according to the experience of journalist Andini Effendi, the mainstream media only takes this garbage issue as information, not as an in-depth report. Even if an in-depth report is made, it is usually unsustainable. But this issue is already fundamental and relevant for everyone. “Because if we talk about mainstream media, everything is segmented, can not be targeted,” said Andini.
Social media or digital media can actually produce an effective impact. If in the mainstream media, what determines a news story will be aired or not is the editorial. Editors, consisting of several people, may not see the issue of waste processing and sorting as important. Andini doesn’t blame the editor; indeed everything must start from ourselves first, whether we personally have been moved to sort out the garbage or not. If a journalist is aware of this issue and applies the behavior of sorting garbage every day with discipline, then he already has a strong attitude base to influence the editor.
To frame an environmental issue to be interesting, andini suggested, the issue should not only be seen as an environmental issue, but should be seen as a livelihood issue. Suppose the angle (focus of coverage) will relate to ourselves and those closest to us, can only be brought to the editorial table. That relates to ourselves and others that for example the issue of garbage (environment) is closely related to health issues. For example, the proposed coverage of cases of diarrheal diseases that spread in the area near landfill, it can happen anywhere as long as there are landfills that are not taken care of, then the editor may consider it. “Man is the most selfish creature, yes we’ve just talked about the human being; what’s in it for them? That I think will be much more discussed than we talk about the environment.”
Andini hopes that the media can cover more deeply and sharply on the issue of waste management and sorting. Need a new perspective for the community that garbage is not just garbage, but also a commodity. There is a circular economy that can be run if we can manage the waste properly and properly.
Waste4Change and Waste Management Mission
DKI Jakarta produces 175,000 tons of waste every day. Just for information, 7000-8000 tons per day if collected for 2 days will be as big as Borobudur Temple, can you imagine how big the pile of garbage if it exceeds that amount?
81% of Indonesians do not sort out garbage. Whereas in the law, government regulations, and local government regulations have been stated that the people of Indonesia MUST sort the garbage. The saddest are the spearheads of this terrain of cleanliness: janitors and scavengers. Their level of well-being is below the threshold and that is very concerning. “Garbage affairs in Indonesia has harmed the environment, also mistreated fellow scavengers and janitors,” said Waste4Change Managing Director, Mohamad Bijaksana Junerosano, or commonly called Sano.
Waste4Change is a social enterprise established in 2014 with the mission of providing environmentally friendly waste management services and responsible for a waste-free Indonesia. Established since 2014, Waste4Change wants to be more expansive in terms of waste business.
Waste4Change has conducted a study: Out of 430 respondents in Jakarta and surrounding areas in 2019, 49.2 percent of people have sorted out waste. So only about 50.8 percent of respondents did not sort out the garbage. That is, the campaign about sorting garbage that has been raised since 2014 has a positive impact. The level of people sorting out the garbage was apparently increasing. It would be better if the Central Bureau of Statistics (BPS) conducted similar research in 2021.
The problem of waste now is in governance, not technology issues. Waste management technology already exists and just choose which one to use. The biggest problem is in the regulations and policies that must be enforced; in partnership; and the most important thing is in financing. “This issue of waste is like our watch; missing one component then it won’t run our clock. It must be supported by regulation, partnership, and financing so that our ‘hours’ run well,” said Sano.
In all countries that manage waste, the turning point is law enforcement. The community must be aware of education and socialization, and also reminded by law enforcement in order for this waste sorting program to succeed.
There are many rules governing the sorting of garbage. But no referee oversees the implementation of this garbage sorting rule on the field. There are no direct consequences for people littering; they have no guilt and feel no sin if they throw garbage indiscriminately. One of Sano’s ways of changing this behavior is that he invites elements of society to be proactive; photos, videos, and report to the government to go viral. So that the unrighteous can be reminded and the right also needs to be virtualized in order to inspire.
If we type garbage, plastic, or compost on Google, the graph goes up. That is a testament to the public’s concern for this issue. “Then we should not be tired to continue to socialize and communicate about the sorting and management of this waste. And if coupled with law enforcement, then there will be a sense of urgency; where people will be forced to really take good care of the garbage. “
Millennials and generation Z are highly tech and social media savvy. So Waste4Change, to smooth its campaigns, invested heavily in its official website and social media. For that they must manage professionally, because this is a communication channel to inform something to the public and encourage cooperation and collaboration.
As a waste management activist, of course recycling is one of the mandatory formulas for Waste4Change. Because the recycling capacity of inorganic waste is very large, including recycling plastics and paper. But many recycling activists also fill the recycling capacity through imports. “These recycled wastes should go into Indonesia’s recycling industry and boost the local economy, rather than the money to buy waste from abroad. We have to change the system.”
SAE Indonesia has been working with Waste4Change since September 2019. As of January-October 2020, the waste that has been sorted is 550 kg. Waste collected from SAE Indonesia is processed into compost (2%), distributed to the recycling industry into new products (37%) and used as fuel for cement manufacturing with Refuse-derived Fuel technology (61%).