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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Warsaw. Rubbish mistake and collective neighborly responsibility

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A garbage mistake hits the pocket. Errors in waste segregation will cost the residents of a housing estate in Warsaw’s Ursynów a lot. You have to segregate, someone does it wrong, and everyone has to pay. And it’s a salty bill – a total of over 80,000 zlotys. Material of the program “Poland and the World”.

An additional fee was imposed on the Warsaw Housing and Building Cooperative Imielin for incorrect segregation of waste. “If there is a law, we should all abide by it.” However, the very construction of collective responsibility should not take place. It cannot be that one is to blame and everyone pays for it – comments Rafał Januszkiewicz, president of the cooperative.

“It creates a sense of helplessness”

The bill to pay is not small. Officials issued a separate one for each block of flats in the cooperative. amounts? That’s seven, ten, up to twenty thousand. In total, it is over PLN 87,000. – This creates a sense of helplessness, frustration among the residents, and above all, a sense of injustice. Why should someone pay for a complete stranger – wonders Januszkiewicz.

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The surcharge is for November last year. The administration has no way to verify who is at fault. – We keep monitoring for about two or three weeks – indicates the president of the cooperative.

The board of the cooperative appealed against the decision of the city hall. – There have already been such cases of non-segregation of waste in the years 2021-2022. We know that such cases have also been reported this year – says Kamila Terpiał, spokeswoman for the Ursynów district.

– The Supreme Administrative Court indicates that a single failure to comply with this obligation must result in conducting proceedings and increasing the fee – explains Jakub Leduchowski, deputy spokesman for the town hall.

Pure theory

Collective responsibility is the key word here. How to verify who is at fault on a large housing estate? Segregation for two years is not a choice but an obligation.

– The Act has seen this problem for some time and allows for the separation, i.e. assigning individual responsibility, if a system is implemented in a given housing estate that allows you to identify this waste producer. This is pure theory today. In Poland, such systems do not work. We have a general problem when it comes to garbage cans. – evaluates Karol Wójcik from the Chamber of Municipal Industry.

– It is a serious problem that we throw waste into the closest bin, regardless of whether it is a bin for selective waste collection, bio or mixed waste – comments Filip Piotrowski from the Zero Waste Association.

One of the smart solutions for sorting waste wisely are modern garbage cans. You can’t make a mistake, because after scanning the barcode on the bag, only one flap opens.

A huge challenge

Dumpster sheds and waste segregation are a nationwide problem. – Over the last two years, we have carried out over 1,200 inspections in Gdańsk. As a result, we imposed an additional fee of less than PLN 800,000 – says Piotr Kryszewski, deputy mayor of Gdańsk for municipal services.

In two years, at least 55 percent of municipal waste should be recycled. – This is a huge challenge. This cannot be done without professionally operating waste treatment plants. But it cannot be done without residents who will segregate waste at the appropriate level – sums up Karol Wójcik.

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