The waste issue

Recycling like a cat


The waste issue

Tunis has a waste problem – that much we can say on the very first day of our trip.There is waste everywhere in the Medina, Tunis’s old town. In the streets, on the sidewalks, in front of entrances and stores.People simply leave their waste wherever they happen to be, occasionally throwing it out of moving cars. Sometimes it is wrapped in bags, sometimes not.

750 tons – that is the amount of waste this city of one million inhabitants needs to take care of daily.This is not even that much waste for a city its size. Its twin city Cologne, for example, which is similar in size, has to deal with a similar amount of wast.The thing in Tunis is that everybody leaves their waste everywhere, making waste separation impossible.And thus, recycling as well.

Among the few who are seriously concerned about waste separation are the stray cats. They go for anything edible that can be found in the waste. And this is quite a lot – more than half of Tunis’s waste is organic. For the cats, this means that they can be picky when it comes to putting together their meals.

As the city does not dare relying entirely on the cats for waste separation, it is developing strategies that will help to improve the situation. This is one reason, why Tunis has invited an expert to advise its administration on waste management. More information on how exactly this works will follow soon.