Istanbul’s new vending machines trade recyclables for metro fare
Istanbul's "Smart Mobile Waste Transfer Centers" scan and assign a value to recyclables before crushing, shredding, and sorting the material. Will they help to prevent littering?
What incentive do you have to make sure a plastic bottle you use ends up in a recycling bin?
The answer is probably very little, unless you’re determined to get 5 to 10 cents per bottle at the recycling center or unless you happen to live in one of the few cities or states that have mandatory recycling laws or plastic bottle bans.
Recently, Istanbul devised a more direct incentive to boost recycling rates by installing "reverse vending machines" that allow people to trade recyclables for credit on Istanbulkart cards, which are used to pay for public transportation.
“With those smart machines, our waste management department and the municipality’s Smart City Technologies Company [İsbak] will contribute to the protection of the environment,” the municipality said on Twitter.
The machines, dubbed "Smart Mobile Waste Transfer Centers," are able to scan and assign a value to recyclables before crushing, shredding, and sorting the material. The Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality plans to install at least 100 of the machines in 25 locations by the end of 2018.
Boosting recycling through reverse vending machines isn’t a new idea. The technology has already been installed or proposed in the U.S., China, the U.K., and Norway, where the recycling rate is 90%, largely thanks to reverse vending machines that have been in place since the 1970s. (Norway also adds an extra cost to its recyclable products that can be recouped later by recycling.)
In March, a leaked report estimated that the U.K. could increase its recycling rate from 60% to 85% by instituting a recyclable deposit scheme that includes reverse vending machines.
The success rates of other countries that have adopted similar schemes seem to support that claim, such as Lithuania, which increased its recycling return rate from 34% to 91% in the two years after implementing the plan.
Upstreamism advocate Rishi Manchanda calls us to understand health not as a "personal responsibility" but a "common good."
- Upstreamism tasks health care professionals to combat unhealthy social and cultural influences that exist outside — or upstream — of medical facilities.
- Patients from low-income neighborhoods are most at risk of negative health impacts.
- Thankfully, health care professionals are not alone. Upstreamism is increasingly part of our cultural consciousness.
It marks a major shift in the government's battle against the opioid crisis.
- The nation's sixth-largest drug distributor is facing criminal charges related to failing to report suspicious drug orders, among other things.
- It marks the first time a drug company has faced criminal charges for distributing opioids.
- Since 1997, nearly 222,000 Americans have died from prescription opioids, partly thanks to unethical doctors who abuse the system.
An innovation may lead to lifelike evolving machines.
- Scientists at Cornell University devise a material with 3 key traits of life.
- The goal for the researchers is not to create life but lifelike machines.
- The researchers were able to program metabolism into the material's DNA.
The real Game of Thrones might be who best leverages the hit HBO show to shape political narratives.
- Sen. Elizabeth Warren argues that Game of Thrones is primarily about women in her review of the wildly popular HBO show.
- Warren also touches on other parallels between the show and our modern world, such as inequality, political favoritism of the elite, and the dire impact of different leadership styles on the lives of the people.
- Her review serves as another example of using Game of Thrones as a political analogy and a tool for framing political narratives.
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