Selective collection of organic waste to commence in Madrid on November 1

This first stage will see the participation of 17 areas in 10 districts and 50 large waste generators. Waste food, domestic gardening waste, coffee and tea dregs, used kitchen roll and serviettes, cork bottle tops, matches and sawdust should all be deposited in the new containers, which feature brown lids.

This plan, which begins on November 1 in 17 areas of 10 districts in the city and in 50 large-scale waste generators, seeks to implement source separation of biowaste progressively throughout the city, with a view to achieving the EU target of 50% of waste prepared for reuse and recycling by 2020.

Last year, residents of Madrid generated an average of 1.1 kilos of waste per day. 71% of this waste corresponded to the rest fraction (grey container with orange lid). The organic matter content of this fraction is 47% and 30% respectively for household waste and commercial waste.

In addition to meeting EU targets, the selective collection of organic matter puts Madrid in line with other European cities and also affords great environmental benefits: the biowaste is availed of as a fertiliser and for the generation of energy. The separate recovery of this waste prevents the emission of greenhouse gases and foul odours. Moreover, it reduces the quantity of waste sent to landfill by extending its useful life, whilst also improving the selective collection of other recyclables.