Tallinners mainly sort paper, cardboard waste, survey shows

  • 2022-01-19
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN - According to a survey carried out in fall 2021, when it comes to household waste, Tallinn residents most often sort paper and cardboard, returnable packaging and hazardous waste.

Some 83 percent of households in Tallinn stated to always sort paper and cardboard waste, 82 percent always sort packages covered by the deposit system and 75 percent always sort hazardous waste, spokespeople for the city government said.

"Separate collecting of packaging and other waste will become more convenient for the residents of the city. This year, in cooperation with recycling organizations, we are installing more containers in the city to sort packaging waste in order to bring the containers closer to people," deputy mayor of Tallinn Joosep Vimm said. "The most common obstacle to waste sorting is that it is not always convenient to dispose of the waste." 

Obsolete electronic equipment is always sorted by 60 percent of Tallinners, used clothing by 58 percent and biowaste, including food waste, by 53 percent. 44 percent of citizens always sort all non-returnable packaging, which includes plastic and metal, glass, paper and cardboard. In general, the survey shows that older people are more likely to sort waste at home -- for example, 81 percent of people aged 65 and over sort bio-waste. 

In public spaces, such as streets, bus stops or parks, 38 percent of Tallinn citizens always sort waste and 24 percent mostly sort waste. 53 percent of the city's residents are very satisfied or mostly satisfied with the adequacy of separate collection bins in public spaces. 

In the past year, 41 percent of respondents have taken waste to a waste station. Satisfaction with the service provided by those collection points is quite high, with an average rating of 3.5 on a 4-point scale for different aspects of their service. 

"We aim to create a circular economy center in every district of Tallinn where, in addition to sorted waste collection, other services are offered to help reduce waste or promote reuse. The first step will be the establishing of the Lillekula recycling center," Vimm said. "This year, Tallinn will offer a quarterly opportunity to hand over large waste, including broken furniture, free of charge at the waste stations. However, furniture that is fit for use can be brought to the reuse center free of charge throughout the year. In the planned Lillekula circular economy center, however, opportunities will be created to repair and restore furniture yourself under the guidance of a master craftsman."

Forty-five percent of Tallinn residents claim to have had excess furniture that they no longer need over the last three years. Of these, 36 percent have given away or sold their unwanted furniture and 34 percent have taken their furniture to a waste collection point with their own transport. An interest to repair their broken furniture themselves with the help of a tutor was expressed by 43 percent of the respondents.

On behalf of the Tallinn Strategic Management Office, pollster Turu-uuringute AS conducted a telephone survey on the circular economy and waste among 804 Tallinn residents aged 15 and older in October and November.