Expansion of the organic waste collection project reaches more than 12 thousand families

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Filipa Brito

The Porto Municipality's pioneering organic harvesting project takes another step in the strategy of reaching practically the entire city by the end of 2023. This month already, and in partnership with Lipor, the Orgânico will be extended to about 12 thousand families and, by the end of the year, the network will consist of a total of 650 containers.

At this stage, the areas of Rua de Camões, Alegria, Santos Pousada, Amial, S. Tomé, Costa Cabral and Areosa will be covered, and the residents will be contacted for clarification and information materials on the operation of the project will be delivered to the members, a 7-litre bucket for food leftovers and an access card to the container for the disposal of this waste, as well as a backpack and a vertical garden.

For ease of access for citizens, the strategy of extending the Orgânico project also recommends the strengthening of the number of nearby containers, with the increase of the installation of equipment by the end of this year, to about 650.

Through this initiative, the people of Porto have already allowed the reduction of waste sent to the undifferentiated, through the collection of more than 1,400 tons of food waste, sent for recovery.

It should be recalled that the Orgânico is only one of the paths of the Porto strategy for the management of this type of waste, which passes, in the first line, by reducing and fighting food waste, through initiatives such as the "Dose certa", or the "Embrulha", by making available, free of charge, biodegradable packaging to restaurants, so that customers can take the leftovers from their meals.

On the other hand, the municipality also provides local treatment solutions for bio-waste, such as home composting (with the delivery of more than 2,000 composters) and community composting, which allows, at the same time, a reduction of costs and environmental impacts associated with centralized treatment. In this context, the two units installed in 2021 in housing groups, already involve more than 140 families, supported by Lipor technicians, in the composting process to obtain 100% natural organic compost, later applied in their gardens/ houses.

It is recalled that the selective collection of organics in Porto started in 2006, in the non-domestic sector and currently has more than 1200 members. In 2018, in an area consisting of single-family homes, door-to-door selective collection of paper, glass, packaging/metal and also organic waste was implemented.

This area was expanded in May of this year, and the system also reached the Antas area. There are almost three thousand participating families, with a total of 800 t/year of selective collection.

The expansion of the selective collection of bio-waste is a strategic commitment of the Municipality of Porto to promote the circular economy and to achieve carbon neutrality in the city, in line with the challenges of the Porto Climate Pact, whose management and coordination the municipal company Porto Ambiente recently assumed.