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Sort out the Mess from the Garbage
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Residents in Shanghai could soon be paying to have their household garbage processed, according to a draft regulation.


Enterprises and households except for those who receive government low income subsidies face fines if they don't pay. Charges are yet to be finalized.


The Shanghai municipal government said it was expected the regulation would improve the city's household garbage processing system, by recycling more reusable waste, and applying stricter controls to the waste collection process.


Public comment is being sought.


In January, the government's legal office published the first edition of the household garbage processing regulation. Revisions were made after the first public comment phase.


Chen Wencai, an official with Shanghai municipal city appearance and environment sanitation administrative bureau, said more improvements to the city's garbage processing system, which currently recycles about 4.4 percent of the total output, were needed.


In 2006, the city produced 6.6 million tons of household garbage and only 289,000 tons were recycled. Most rubbish was either buried or burned.


"As a city with a large population, Shanghai does not have much land for garbage," Chen said.


"We will require people to sort out their garbage and our recycling enterprises to process garbage according to different kinds.


"We will test the sorting first late this year."


The government also announced that Shanghai people will be kept more informed of new city regulations.


All draft regulations will be published on the government website, another major web portal www.eastday.com and on local paper Jiefang Daily.


Information will also be made available to other major cities through the media.


The government will make it easier for people to give feedback on proposals after it made significant grounds for transparency in 2003 when it began publishing draft regulations for the public.


(China Daily September 12, 2007)

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