Shanghai’s Informal Waste Sector is Formalizing. FAST!

With the rapid growth of China, citizens become more affluent and waste has been generated with an unprecedented rate, many of China’s first and second tier cities have been forced to rethink waste management. Particularly, the informal waste management systems that have, to date, efficiently closed the loop on a lot of waste streams. In Shanghai, with two of its largest landfills in the proces…

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Beijing Workshop: Closing the Loop on Waste

Last Thursday, Collective Responsibility hosted it’s Beijing session on “Closing the Loop on Waste” to look at how China is managing its growing supply of waste, the implications for business, and to share some best practices for how firms in the retail and manufacturing sector are closing the loop in China. Joining the session, we had Libo Ma, Director in Corporate Culture, Employee Engagement…

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Shanghai Workshop: Closing the Loop on Waste

This week, we hosted a workshop on “Closing the loop on Waste in China” for 20 sustainability professionals from various industries, to help them understand the waste management system in China and how they can engage their stakeholders in the circular economy. Focusing on the circular economy of waste, and how businesses hold the power to address the waste issue in China and the potential for…

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New Report: Informal Waste Management in China

Most people can make money from waste … They start work at five in the morning and get off at 10 at night; they never rest and don’t spend much money. In one year, about 72,000 RMB. After a little over a year, you can really make that much money. 10 years down the road, you can save quite a lot.” – Owner, Large Collection Centre The latest addition to our publications series “Informal Waste…

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Food Waste Management: A MASSIVE Growth Opportunity in China

With China’s growing number of urban consumers, more and more pressure is being placed on system to account for the outputs of cities, particularly on its food systems.  One of growing concerns is the issue of managing the sizeable amount of food waste that is coming from restaurants, canteens, and households.  It is a concern that is increasingly strained by the poor waste management practice…

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Asia Promises To Tackle Ocean Plastic

  Plastic, it is one of the most widely used materials in the economy, and as we are coming to understand through various studies, it is quickly becoming one of the greatest challenges that need to be addressed.  Many use cases for plastics are unrivaled in its properties and price. It is everywhere that we look and people continue to consume and make, from large uses to the small cons…

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Reducing China’s Food Packaging Waste through Innovation

As the largest city in China, Shanghai has an important role in innovating and contributing to a global solution to the problem of waste. With over 24 million people living in Shanghai, materials sustainability, particularly that of plastics, is a significant issue. Waimai food delivery, which is extremely common in Shanghai, creates large amounts of waste due to the plastic containers, bags, and…

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Dreams of a Sustainable Career, Design, and Waste | #AskTheCollective 013

In this episode of #AsktheCollective, I answer questions from university students about following their sustainable dreams, design, and waste. As always, we hope you find these questions and answers useful, gain some new insights, and possibly help catalyze you to take your next step! #Timestamps 00:34 -  I want to get into sustainable design, but my professors say that is impractical a…

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Recycled Waste in Shanghai: Where it goes

For our regular readers, you will know that we have been spending last several months looking deep into how waste is managed in China, with a specific focus on how recycled waste is collected, sorted, and processed in Shanghai. This is driven in part by the belief that Shanghai has, and will, serve as a model for city development in China going forward. It is a city that not only has experience…

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Waste in Shanghai: Rising Pressures for the Informal System

China's waste management system is feeling the heat. Over the past few months, scandals from illegal dumping to capacity reaches of major landfills have exposed the complexities of Shanghai’s waste stream –and the challenges that exist in controlling its management. These issues are not unique to Shanghai – they represent broader trends and issues of consumption growth in many of China’s cit…

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Informal Waste Collection in China: A People-Powered Economy

China's waste collection and management system has recently captured public attention. Much of that attention has focused on negative incidents – such as dumping scandals in Shanghai and Wuxi – or uncertainty about the future of waste treatment, with expected landfill closures in Shanghai for 2017. But how much do you really know about waste beyond the headlines? Collective's work on waste i…

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Supply Chain Sustainability: The Bestway to Put Theory Into Practice

SUSTAINABILITY: THEORY VS. REALITY When discussing sustainable business, ideas that make "big-picture" environmental sense on paper may or may not translate well into day-to-day practice. What may seem more efficient in the long-term is not always conducive to the main focus of business, the bottom line – particularly when talking about supply chain actors and retailers. This is why it's so…

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Why a Chinese Government Lawsuit is an Opportunity for Sustainability

China has some of the largest and fastest-growing megacities in the world. And with 100 million more people moving to those cities by 2020, China will have to tackle critical urbanization issues years, even decades ahead of everyone else. One area that doesn't receive nearly enough attention is waste management. Through our ongoing research on waste in China, we've studied the realities of Shan…

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China’s Landfills Are Closing: Where Will The Waste Go?

In China, waste and waste management have attracted national concern. From environmental issues like toxic chemicals in sea water, to issues affecting urban centers – like Beijing's burdened landfills – waste has become a central part of public discourse. With this in mind, we thought we'd share insights from our past and recent work on waste in Shanghai, and shed light on major changes to waste m…

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Ocean Plastic & China’s Affluence, Markets for Sustainability & Leadership | #AskTheCollective 002

As we wrap up the start of February, we are proud to present Episode 002 of the #AskTheCollective video series. This episode features topics ranging from ocean plastic and the influence of affluence in China, to the link between sustainability and a market-driven economy. Many thanks to askers: Wade Sewell, allaways coffee, and Mario Van Der Meulen. As always, we hope you find these questions a…

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