Recycling made easy in Yogyakarta, Indonesia

During our recent visit to Yogyakarta, Indonesia, we stumbled upon a charming and ingenious practice in waste management that we just had to share.

In many public places throughout this vibrant city, waste separation containers are designed in the shapes of familiar items: an apple, a plastic bottle, and a can. This playful yet practical approach makes it clear where different types of waste should go, without needing any words or instructions.

Imagine these bins as apple, bottle, and can shapes!

These funny shaped bins do more than just look cute—they simplify the recycling process and make it more engaging. Imagine walking up to a waste bin and instantly knowing what type of waste goes where just by the shape. An apple for organic waste, a plastic bottle for plastics, and a can for metals. This visual and intuitive solution encourages everyone to participate in recycling without any confusion.

Why This Matters

Such creative design not only makes waste management more accessible but also promotes environmental consciousness in a fun way. It’s a perfect example of how design can play a crucial role in environmental sustainability. By integrating familiar shapes that resonate with everyday items, these bins reduce the effort required to separate waste correctly, thus making recycling an effortless part of daily life.

This initiative aligns beautifully with the principles we champion in the EDU4plastiCircular project, which aims to foster a circular economy and promote eco-friendly practices globally. It’s a reminder that sometimes, the simplest ideas can have the most profound impact.

Let’s draw inspiration from Yogyakarta’s playful approach to waste separation. We can implement similar strategies in our communities to make recycling straightforward and enjoyable for everyone. Next time you’re thinking of waste management solutions, consider how you might incorporate design elements that educate and engage people effortlessly.
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