Recycling gone digital: New local app helps Filipinos manage waste amid pandemic

March 18, 2021 - 9:24 PM
Image by Sigmund via Unsplash

A new waste management application was launched to help Filipinos collect and recycle their trash.

Called Trash Panda, the application is an “on-demand recoverable waste collection and coaching” service which helps Filipinos find facilities where they can send their trash for recycling and processing.

It was developed by Circula Recoon, a startup company that advocates for an eco-friendly lifestyle to people.

As of writing, it is only available to Android users. The company is still working for it to be available to iPhone users and other platforms.

In its Google Play page, Trash Panda listed down the following services:

  • Positive impact for the environment
  • Get cashback from recycling facilities
  • Learn to overcome waste management challenges.

It also pointed out that the items to be collected should be sorted out well and are clean.

“Please ensure that all items to be collected for recycling are clean, dry, and free from oil, food/beverage residue and strong smells. Items of similar types are to be placed in bags, containers, or stacks per type. The Trash Panda collectors reserve the right to refuse the collection of items that are not cleaned and prepared as instructed,” the page read.

Being new to the market, it is only available in the following areas:

  1. Makati
  2. Mandaluyong
  3. Manila
  4. Marikina
  5. Parañaque
  6. Pasay
  7. Pasig
  8. San Juan
  9. Taguig
  10. Cainta in Rizal

On Thursday, Trash Panda shared infographics indicating the types of products and items they collect and accept to help their users segregate their waste.

Environmental groups recently raised the alarm over the rise of plastic pollution in the country, citing improper disposal of face masks.

Last March, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources received reports about the discovery of disposable face masks, plastic face shields and other household healthcare wastes in reefs.

Environment Undersecretary Benny Antiporda called on the public to use yellow trash bins dedicated for these coronavirus preventive materials be placed as remedial measures.

“These (quarantine and medical) facilities are required to put up a treatment facility and get a hauling permit, so monitoring medical wastes comes easy with these sectors,” Antiporda said in a statement.

EcoWaste Coalition recently called on the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases to expand the proper disposal of face masks and other COVD-19-related wastes in their minimum public health standards.

“We strongly suggest that used face masks, face shields and other protective materials should be safely managed and disposed of at all times.  This should also form part of the MPHS to safeguard public health and the environment from these potentially infectious discards, which are also polluting our streets and oceans,” said Jove Benosa, Zero Waste Campaigner, EcoWaste Coalition.