Author(s): Filomena Compagno
My name is Filomena Compagno and I am a Zero Waste activist. I live and work in Terracina, a seaside town of 46.000 inhabitants situated at 100 km to the south of Rome in Latium. In 2015 it became a Zero Waste Municipality with a Zero Waste Observatory. In the same year Terracina adopted the door-to-door collection reaching 59,17% of Recycling. In 2016 Terracina reached 73%, becoming the first “Comune Riciclone” of Latium, and in 2017 it reached 71%, becoming the second “Comune Riciclone” of Latium. In the same years the rubbish collection decreased to 320 kg per inhabitant and unsorted waste decreased to 88 kg per inhabitant.
How was it possible to reach these important goals? It was possible because the local City Administration worked together with citizens, local sanitation transfer station and environmental associations.
In order to improve RECYCLE the Municipality of Terracina together with De Vizia, the local sanitation transfer, distributed to the families and traders 5 bins for the door-to-door collection. They also created separate waste collection centres. On Saturday there are itinerant eco-islands throughout the territory of the town and at Borgo Hermada there is a permanent eco-island.
Recentely an Eco-point was placed at Terracina harbou where fishermen can bring plastic fishing waste. Every day they fish plastic and other waste, if they bring them to the Eco-point it is possible to recycle them, to reduce plastic in the sea and to obtain tax relief.
The Municipality of Terracina together with De Vizia also placed recycling bins in town where it is possible to throw separately plastic and metals (yellow), paper (blue), glass (green), unsorted waste (grey), cigarette butts and old batteries.
Since 2015 our Municipality and De Vizia distributed free compost bins in order to allow home composting and in 2018 Terracina adopted Junker app https://itunes.apple.com/it/app/junker-raccolta differenziata/id982194860?mt=8 which allows a correct separate collection of many products in commerce. Thanks to a simple photo and GPS location it is also possible to point out littering to the Municipality and De Vizia.
Furthemore, our Municipality together with De Vizia promoted a waste awareness raising campaign by local and international events and actions.
In order to teach a correct separate collection to the primary schools pupils our Municipality offered them an ecological comic book and an ecological game. It is important to point out that primary schools in Terracina abolished plastic tableware and now they all use compostable tableware or dishes of clay in the canteen.
In this scenario Terracina Zero Waste activists have a leading role. We are daily engaged in Reducing, Reusing and Recycling. For this purpose we are in contact with many Italian Zero Waste activists and we recognize the leading role of our Zero Waste Italy and Europe President Rossano Ercolini, our International Zero Waste President Paul Connett and Contarina of Treviso, the first Italian district in Recycling, Reducing and Reusing.
*Regarding RECYCLE, in 2016, as a member of Terracina Zero Waste Observatory, with other Zero Waste activists I monitored and encouraged the separate collection in every school of our municipality. In the school where I teach, “Scuola Media Don Milani” of Terracina, I weekly check separate collection and every year I teach a course of Environmental Education for 11 years old students.
*Regarding WASTE REDUCTION, we promoted the campaigns for the use of the flasks in spite of plastic bottles above all at school. This permitted the reduction of plastic packaging at school and a wealthy way to drink.
Since 2015 Terracina reduced plastic waste. At present every inhabitant produces 21 kg of plastic waste, but it is possible to further reduce it in the following way: 1) abolishing plastic disposable tableware in commercial establishments; 2) abolishing plastic bottles in vending machines; 3) abolishing plastic bottles and disposable tableware in official meetings; 4) promoting the sale of filtered water in commercial establishments; 5) reducing the sale of snacks with plastic packaging; 6) promoting Mater-B tableware in food festivals and local events. Such actions will be possible when Terracina will be a Plastic free Municipality in 2021.
*Regarding REUSE, we promoted the campaign for the use of flasks in spite of plastic bottles above all at school and we organized a toy, t-shirt and book reuse markets for 2017 EWWR (European Week for Waste Reduction). In this way books, clothing and other objects found a second life instead of ending up in a landfill.
*We are convinced that awareness and practical examples are basic to increase citizenship and an ecological and Zero Waste lifestyle, so as Zero Waste activists we sensitize students and citizens to Recycle, Reduce and Reuse by means of environmental and Zero Waste courses and events, above all in the schools of our territory, EWWR (European Week for Waste Reduction), Eco-Swimming and clean up actions, like “Let’s Clean Up Europe” and many others. Every time all the events and actions mentioned above engaged many students and citizens.
In conclusion, as a Zero Waste activist and ecological referent of my school I gave many examples of good practice that have been already achieved in Terracina. That’s why we can talk about “The case Terracina” for what concerns Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.
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