I have a very interesting conversation with other "greenies" invited for the event, "Recycling: A Business Opportunity for Women", at Institut Kefahaman Islam Malaysia (IKIM) on 13 June. Lying on bed and recalling them with what I already know, it was just like creating a hybrid, while I should be sleeping. I have decided to fertilise this hybrid in my imagination towards creating something fruitful.
A problem in Malaysia:
In Malaysia, there are low cost flats. These buildings are usually not well taken care off and litters are often indiscriminately thrown by the residents. There is also space constraints and some family members have to sleep on the floor of their sitting rooms.
What I like about living in Singapore:
Housing Development Board (HDB) flats are government subsidised flats in Singapore. In every unit, under the wash basin in the kitchen, they are chutes installed for owners to discard their rubbish.
The rubbish drops down this chute and lands in a huge bin placed on the ground floor. Every morning, the municipal workers pull this bin out of its enclosure to remove the trash collected.
The ground floors of most HDB flats are big open space with concrete tables and chairs installed for recreational purposes. With the approval of the municipal, functions can be held in this area. There is a water pipe installed at one section to facilitate cooking for the event.
What I heard about the Swedes:
They have different days for recycling different waste. For example, if they are allowed to discard paper only in their dustbin on a particular day, the garbage collector will not pick up any other stuff in the dustbin except for the recyclable designated for pick up.
Societies have successfully raised fund for needy with recyclables:
All residents in a flat should consider forming a multi racial cooperative and consider making money from recycling collectively. They can do what the Swedes do and designate days for each type of recyclable. Relevant recyclers must send in their tenders to enable them to be chosen by the cooperative as the main recycler and only for the waste type they are dealing in.
Collection of green or organic waste from the kitchen:
The rubbish chute should only be used to discard green or organic waste from the kitchen. Used oil should be collected separately so that it can be used as a catalyst for making compost or for making soap. Compost can be used to fertilise the fruit trees grown around the flat.
A Cooperative stall for economies of scale:
All income derived from these activities go towards buying food stuff and things that are required by the residents of the flat on a wholesale basis so that they can enjoy economies of scale. The cooperative can open a stall on the ground floor so that they can make money out of the goods on hand by selling them to outsiders. With the stall on the ground floor, residents save on fuel as they do not have to drive out to buy what they need.
Storage space reduction:
A Cooperative stall on the ground floor means that residents do not have to buy things ahead and store them at home nor do they need a bigger refrigerator since all perishable can be purchased as and when needed. This will eliminate problems with space constraint and open up more space for other activities.
Incentive to residents from the government:
Residents will be encouraged to use the lifts at designated peak period to save on electricity if the government provide points towards rewarding this effort. These points can be used in exchange of product sold by the cooperative.
Teaching and selling handcrafted work out of abandoned material:
Stay at home mothers should be encouraged to network with one another. The best way is to learn a craft together in the community hall beside the cooperative stall. Handmade creation can be sold at the cooperative. Women who are good at cooking can prepare food for sales at the cafe cum library beside the community hall. This way, mothers do not have to worry about their children while they learn a new trade. Make it a meaningful project.
The Cooperative as a training ground for trading:
The Cooperative can be manned by paid residents on rotation. In the process, they will learn how to manage a store and earn an income in the process.
A paper recycler said he needs green waste as fuel:
Other than collecting green waste for making compost, these can be collected and sold to recyclers for fuel in their recycling processes.
Prevent global warming with car pool:
For children going to the same school and residents working in the same area.
Conserving natural resources and creating green energy:
1) Solar panel should be installed to generate energy for the flat.
2) Rainwater should be collected into a man made pond for washing cars and watering the orchard.
3) Shoes and bicycles for children should be invented to enable them to generate energy from utilizing them in their daily activities.
4) Devices should be installed along frequently used walkways to help generate energy.
A figment in my imagination but a possibility of the future because I have written about it. Share your green dreams.