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Bersih Indonesia: End-to-End Household Waste Management System Trials Start in Malang Regency
January 11, 2024
  • One million residents to gain access to paid door-to-door, segregated household waste collection and processing services under Phase One

  • Aim is to pioneer a financially sustainable waste management system that serves as a blueprint for further scaling and replication across Indonesia

  • Malang Regency will establish a new public utility dedicated to municipal waste management operated by its Environmental Department

Malang, Indonesia, 11 January 2024 – The Malang Regency announced the kick-off for Phase One of the Bersih Indonesia: Eliminasi Sampah Plastik (Bersih Indonesia) programme, benefitting one million residents with new or improved waste management services. A landmark public-private partnership led by the Malang Regency and supported by the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime and Investment Affairs (Kemenko Marves), and the Alliance to End Plastic Waste (the “Alliance”), Bersih Indonesia aims to pioneer a self-sustaining and commercially viable system that can be further scaled and replicated across Indonesia.

A key element of the programme is the establishment of a public utility operated under the Regency’s Environment Department (Dinas Lingkungan Hidup/DLH) – one of the first in Indonesia’s waste management sector. Locally known as a Badan Layanan Umum Daerah (BLUD), the BLUD will assume full responsibility for the operations and maintenance of a comprehensive waste management system, from the development of critical infrastructure to providing household collection services. More importantly, this system enables the extraction, separation, and sale of recyclable materials including plastic, metal, glass, and paper. Through the BLUD, Bersih Indonesia is exploring the feasibility of recyclables as a potential new revenue stream that will go towards the continued operation and potential expansion of the system.

Tito Fibrianto Hadi Prasetya, Head of the Malang District Environment Service said, “One contributing factor to Indonesia’s plastic pollution challenge is a lack of end-to-end waste management services in many regions. We hope that Malang residents will support the Bersih Indonesia initiative by paying a fee which will not only be used to safely dispose of household waste but also be channelled towards the development of more advanced waste management and recycling facilities within the Regency. While this behavioural shift will take some time, it ultimately benefits the entire community by enabling a cleaner and healthier environment for all.”

Under Phase One of the Bersih Indonesia programme in Malang, two Material Recovery Facilities (MRFs) and two transfer stations will be built over the next two years, with construction targeted to commence in Q2 2024. Completion of the first MRF built at the Paras Final Processing Site (Tempat Pemrosesan Akhir/TPA Paras) and the roll out of the BLUD paid household waste collection services is targeted to start in Q4 2024. Upon full Phase One operational capacity being reached:

  • Approximately one million residents will benefit from new or improved end-to-end waste management services;

  • More than 230,000 households across 170 villages will be included in the service roll-out;

  • More than 1,400 local jobs will be created;

  • Around 140,000 tonnes of municipal solid waste will be collected and processed annually including up to 20,000 tonnes of plastic waste; and

  • At least 10,000 tonnes of plastic waste will be recycled. This quantity is expected to increase as source segregation improves and local recycling options become available.

Based on observations and lessons learnt from Phase One, the Bersih Indonesia programme will potentially expand to cover the rest of Malang Regency. It is anticipated that three additional MRFs and transfer stations will be built to bring an effective waste management service for Malang Regency’s 2.6 million citizens. More information on Bersih Indonesia can be found here.

Galvanising the community to become agents of change

Integral to the success of Bersih Indonesia is community buy-in and participation, with households required to segregate their waste into bins for organic and inorganic waste prior to collection. In preparation for the new system, the Malang H.E.B.A.T.S. community engagement and education programme will begin in Q2 2024. H.E.B.A.T.S (‘Terrific’) stands for – H: Hijau (‘Green’); E: Elok (‘Beautiful’); B: Berkah (‘Blessed’); A: Areknya (‘its People’); T: Terpilah (‘Sorted’); and S: Sampahnya (‘its Waste’) – and is intended to help strengthen waste management and recycling literacy in the population.

Prior to the Bersih Indonesia programme commencing in Malang, the Regency leadership alongside PT Sejahtera Bersih Sampah Plastik (PT SBSP) and its partners, have separately engaged in community clean-up activities. To date, 31 informal dumpsites in the Regency have been cleaned up in an effort to educate the local community about the benefits of living in a clean environment. This has diverted 13,500 tonnes of unmanaged waste, of which 3,100 tonnes comprised of plastic waste; all have been sent to properly managed landfills with viable plastic recyclables separated for sale. Many of the former dumpsites have since been given a new lease of life, and residents have put the newly cleared areas to productive use. As these activities have been successful, they will continue under the Bersih Indonesia programme. The clean-up of a further 359 informal dump sites across the Regency are underway.

Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Maritime and Investment Affairs, who has championed the programme since a Memorandum of Understanding was signed in 2022, commented on the kick-off of Phase One, “Indonesia is the first country to establish a National Plastic Action Partnership with an actionable goal to achieve near-zero plastic leakage by 2040. One of the first steps to enabling a functional circular economy is the implementation of holistic waste management systems that allow for the proper collection, sorting, and recycling of plastic waste. This is precisely what the Malang Regency is doing through Bersih Indonesia by pioneering an environmentally and financially sustainable solution that can potentially address part of the national municipal waste challenge, of which the household sector is the largest contributor.”

Drs. H. M. Sanusi M.M., Malang Regent, said, “Malang Regency is enthusiastic to support Indonesia’s national plastic waste priorities by trialling a cost-effective household waste management solution that not only prevents leakage and pollution but, alongside payment of household fees also unlocks the economic value of recyclables. Turning these into potential revenue streams is a cornerstone of Bersih Indonesia’s unique financial model. We ask for the Malang community to join us in taking collective action to build a cleaner, more sustainable world for future generations.”

Jacob Duer, President and CEO of the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, said “As ASEAN’s largest economy, Indonesia’s continued commitment to its ambitious plastic waste elimination targets is an indication of the leadership it demonstrates in the global race to reduce plastic waste leakage. A collaborative effort between the national government, provincial authorities, and private sector, Bersih Indonesia aims to present a de-risked solution model that can provide a blueprint for financially sustainable waste management projects in other underserved communities and emerging economies.”

About Bersih Indonesia: Eliminasi Sampah Plastik

To support Indonesia’s transition towards a circular economy for plastic, the Alliance to End Plastic Waste has developed the Bersih Indonesia: Eliminasi Sampah Plastik, or “Bersih Indonesia: Elimination of Plastic Waste”, programme. This public-private-people partnership aims to develop effective, replicable and commercially viable waste management systems in underserved communities and help to end plastic waste in Indonesia.

Bersih Indonesia will begin in the Malang Regency in East Java. The Malang government has been actively exploring and piloting programmes to advance its waste-free ambitions and accelerate sustainable development. Bersih Indonesia will set up a comprehensive waste management programme that will provide household collection and sorting infrastructure for residents living outside the main city of Malang. The programme will also include systems to maximise the availability of materials for recycling and minimise landfill.

Overall, Bersih Indonesia seeks to create a more effective waste collection, sorting, and processing model underpinned by strong community engagement and fit-for-purpose infrastructure.