Sustainability Pathways

Mitigation strategies for the reduction of GHG emissions from food waste recycling

Type of practice Recycle
Name of practice Mitigation strategies for the reduction of GHG emissions from food waste recycling
Name of main actor Malaysian Government
Type of actor(s) Public authority
Location Malaysia
Stage of implementation End-of-life
Year of implementation 2012
What was/is being done? Through the National Strategic Plan for Municipal Solid Waste, the government of Malaysia has set targets of 20 percent recycling and 100 percent separation at source for organic wastes by 2020. It is especially noteworthy considering that food waste constitutes approximately 50–60 percent of the total solid waste in major cities. However, implementation of a sound plan for minimizing and sustainably recycling food waste faces obstacles, due to: the lack of landfill taxes and mandatory waste separation at source; low collection fees; allocation of the greatest part of public funds to the collection of waste; weak enforcement; and limited coordination among stakeholders (Papargyropoulou, 2010). As a result, effective food waste segregation and recycling systems are still lacking, so food waste is currently disposed of in landfill with other organic wastes (Hamid et al., 2012). However, recent governmental actions seem to be encouraging. They are oriented toward allocating investments for the proper implementation of the Solid Waste Management and Public Cleansing Act 2007, funding alternative food waste treatments and Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects. The government has also committed to impose compulsory household waste separation in 2013, so as to facilitate separate treatment of organic waste in composting and anaerobic digestion plants. Furthermore, the Strategic Plan includes a number of mitigation strategies for the reduc tion of GHG emissions from the waste sector, which include reduction of organic waste generation, proper treatment/recycling of organic waste so as to minimize the amount disposed of, and appropriate landfilling management in order to ensure that GHG emissions from the site are properly captured. In its Second National Communication to the UNFCCC, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment committed to implement a number of green measures by 2020 through the Strategic Plan, the Waste Minimization Master Plan and the Action Plan, such as: composting food wastes; landfill gas CDM projects; and sending waste to energy recovery facilities.
Outcomes and impacts N/A