According to the central government's plan, all major cities are expected to initiate garbage classification this year. The first batch of cities that are required to sort garbage by 2020 include Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Chongqing and all capitals of provincial regions.
1 Hazardous waste
Hazardous waste, as the name suggests, includes assorted poisonous materials like used batteries, light bulbs, expired medicines, paint, mercury thermometers and pesticides.
2 Wet trash
Household food waste – which is translated to "wet trash" in Chinese – refers to food leftovers, rotten food, pet food, fruit peels, remains of TCM(traditional Chinese medicine) herbs and flowers.
3 Recyclable waste
Paper, plastic, glass, metal and textiles are counted as recyclable waste.
4 Residual waste
The definition of residual waste is a little confusing. Anything that is not listed above belongs in this category.
As specific as the new guideline is, residents still have a hard time sorting trash correctly and are finding it challenging to memorize them all. For instance, both plastic bottles and bubble tea or coffee cups are plastic materials. However, the former falls to the category of recyclable waste and the latter belongs to residual waste. To save the hassle, some netizens have come up with their own ways to sort trash.
"We should do this from a pig's angle," commented one netizen. "Those edible for pigs are household food waste. Those even pigs don't want to eat are residual waste. If a pig consumes something and dies of it, then something must be hazardous waste. Those which can be sold and the money we gain can be used to purchase pigs are recyclable waste."