Taipei, April 17 (CNA) The mandatory use of clear, transparent plastic bags will soon be implemented across Hualien County starting on July 1, the county's Environmental Protection Bureau said Thursday.
The program's goal is to make it easier for garbage collectors to inspect what's being thrown into the plastic bags, while ensuring that residents correctly separate their waste from recyclables.
This will hopefully bring down the amount of trash and increase the county's recycling rate, bureau director Jao Chung (饒忠) said.
According to the bureau, the use of clear plastic bags has already provided positive results, based on its implementation in the county's public sectors and government buildings last year.
Between May and December last year, the county recycled 14.02 percent more waste materials than in the same period in 2015, while the amount of trash collected was down 4.23 percent during the same period.
Based on data provided by the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) on Hualien's garbage collection, Jao said one-fifth of the trash that ends up in the county's landfills is usually recyclable.
If waste can be properly classified before it is thrown out, the county will be able to reduce the amount of garbage that ends up in landfills, he said.
(By Li Hsien-feng and Ko Lin)