Please oppose the new recycling fees: ARO

The African Reclaimers Organization (ARO) has called on the public to appeal the R50 recycling fee they say threatens the livelihoods of waste pickers.

The city of Johannesburg plans to introduce the charge from July 1 if its proposed tariff for waste management is approved.

ARO coordinator and organizer Eli Kodisang said informal recyclers are responsible for 90 percent of recycling in Joburg, but they will not receive a dime of the tariff.

It is estimated that 60% of Bordeaux residents leave their recyclable waste during the week for ARO waste pickers. Photo: provided

Instead, the money will go towards the separation of Pikitup at the source ([email protected]) program.

“The government’s national policy shows that they want to integrate recyclers, support them and make them more efficient as is done in other countries around the world,” Kodisang said.

“But the city of Johannesburg is going against the informal sector. It was in 2017 when the City called on private companies to compete with waste pickers, that waste pickers had to start occupying public spaces and sorting waste as close as possible to the sites. The pollution and problems between residents and waste pickers only started then. “

He said the City should instead support waste pickers by looking for ways to improve their modes of travel or recycling methods.

“The landfills are almost full,” he continued.

An ARO collector stacks recyclable waste in the ARO truck. Photo: provided

“Without the waste pickers, Joburg would be in bad shape. Waste pickers are needed more than ever. “

ARO has an online petition against the tariff which can be signed here

ARO can be contacted via his Facebook page

Thanks to a partnership with residents of Bordeaux, the organization has already set up a separate collection of recyclable waste which is done every week and independently of Pikitup.

The Association of Residents of Bordeaux Sud approves this system and estimates that 60% of the inhabitants of the district recycle in this way.

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