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‘Give garbage & get money’: Mumbai gets ‘reverse vending machines’ to recycle plastic

Multiple cities PAN India have started installing these machines as they attempt a sustainable initiative to support the plastic ban in the country.

In its latest sustainability initiative and in an attempt to increase public awareness of single-use plastic garbage recycling, authorities have installed Reverse Vending Machines (RVM) in Mumbai’s international airport. Following the success and test run, now more installations are being planned in different parts of the city.

Each machine has the capacity to accept and compress 450 plastic bottles per hour. They can compress about 70% of the waste so that it can be easily transported to recyclers, thus saving key resources, emissions and costs liable for transportation and logistics.

The machines deploy interactive 16-inch touch screens, which guide users inserting plastic bottles to receive reward coupons from Zingbus, Myntra, Swiggy and others as incentives. They are delivered via SMS to remove the need for paper in the process.

The Mumbai airport’s effort to achieve “Net Zero” carbon emissions would include a reduction in indirect carbon emissions from manufacturing PET bottles as one of the additional benefits, said the airport authorities.

Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA) has also been awarded the ‘Best Sustainable Airport of the Year’ and achieved the Highest-Level 4+ “Transition” of Airport Carbon Accreditation (ACA) programme of Airport Council International (ACI), making it only the 3rd airport to achieve the esteemed certification in the Asia-Pacific region.

The installation of RVMs on the other hand has also been seen previously in cities like Chandigarh and Rajkot where the local authorities, motivated by foreign governments brought the technology to India.

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