On this day and age, people have been very conscious of the current state of the planet. Many organizations and communities have encouraged people to help save the environment. From using public transport to help with air pollution to using reusable bags instead of plastic bags. According to many sources, Indonesia is one of the world’s most plastic polluters. It raises concern because most of these plastics will end up in the ocean, which will be dangerous to the ecosystem. Hollywood actor and environmentalist, Leonardo DiCaprio posted a picture on his Instagram that shows the concerning state of Bantar Gebang. People are getting alarmed by how poor waste management is in Indonesia, especially in Jakarta.
People’s digital literacy in Indonesia grows every year. In 2018, 36% of people in Indonesia have used the internet and will keep growing up to 44% by 2020, according to statista.com.
This growth is caused by how easy it is to access the internet with smartphone. According to asia.nikkei.com, 51% of people in Indonesia use ride-hailing apps at least once a month, and 76% of people in Indonesia use e-commerce app at least once a month, making Indonesia the number one country to do so. These statistics show how people in Indonesia have used mobile apps to do their daily activities. Knowing this fact, government officials and non-governmental organizations are now integrating basic and digital technology to solve local issues.
Ngobrol Jakarta, an event presented by CoHive in collaboration with Jakarta Smart City, discussed this issue titled “Managing Waste for Better Jakarta” (Kelola Sampah untuk Jakarta yang Lebih Baik).
Held on 17th October 2019 at CoHive 101, Mega Kuningan, South Jakarta, the event discussed the condition of waste management in Jakarta. Three speakers from startups and government agencies shared their perspectives as well as insights on how to manage household waste. They are Ahmad Haryadi (Head of Sanitation Management Division, Environmental Services DKI Jakarta), Ernest Christian Layman (Sistem Online Management Sampah or SMASH and Founder of Khazanah Hijau Indonesia or KAHIJI), and Fadhila Shabrina (Project Coordinator of Kertabumi Klinik Sampah).
Moderated by Francisca Adinda (Indonesia Market Lead of Precious Communications), Ahmad Haryadi explained about the waste problems in Jakarta. He stated that every person in Jakarta produces approximately 0,69% of waste every day. One district in Jakarta produces a whopping 168 tons of waste each day, and the most significant source of waste producers are household trash. He also said that every day, people produce 7452,6 trash that wounds up in TSPT Bantar Gebang. Moreover, if changes are not made, by 2021 TPST Bantar Gebang will not be able to hold more waste.
Haryadi also explained that by law, citizens are obligated to keep the environment clean, decrease and manage their waste, and put trash where they belong. Every citizen is also obliged to use environmentally friendly products, recycle waste and use a single-use product to the minimum. He also stated that every household must at least sort their waste before being taken to the garbage dump.
Ernest Christian Layman established SMASH and KAHIJI to help people manage their waste. SMASH is an integrated application for trash management around Indonesia. Collaborating with Trash Bank (banksampah.id), SMASH has the vision to organize 50% of inorganic trash for Indonesia free of waste. Through mySmash app, users are connected to the nearest trash bank and get rewards in return. Aside from collaborating with Trash Bank, SMASH also has ongoing collaborations with various companies and institutions, creating Smash-Pay and Smart Drop Box for more accessible collection and transaction.
Another way to manage waste is through upcycling and recycling. Fadhila Shabrina explained how Kertabumi Klinik Sampah, a community-based social enterprise who is working on a solution for garbage epidemic in Indonesia. The organization has produced many products, such as tote bags made from plastic bags, handbags made from banners and tires, and accessories made from plastic bottles caps. She explained that Kertabumi Klinik Sampah also empowers women living in a slum area near their workshop. She also stated that every purchase made not only will help reduce waste but will also contribute to social and economic changes in their community, as well as helps developing unique skills and craftsmanship.
Convenience sometimes can be our biggest enemy. It is indeed easier to use plastic bottles instead of bringing our own water bottle. It is also comfortable to use single-use products that can be easily thrown away, but those behaviors lead to overflowing waste on the garbage dump. If these habits sustain while organizations like Kertabumi and SMASH or KAHIJI strives to find more effective and efficient ways to save the environment, it would be pretty much predictable that Jakarta’s waste management would not achieve the goals. Our ways of living need to be changed. Those changes will not only create a habitable environment but will save the planet in the long run.