Living in Daejeon

Waste processing by type

When dumping trash, you must first sort your wastes into separate piles (regular disposable, food waste disposable and recycling). These must then be disposed of using one of the prescribed methods, i.e. green garbage bags for regular waste, waste food basket for food, and separate bags for recycling items, at designated places. A fine is imposed on garbage that is not properly discarded.

General Wastes

General wastes are all items that are not food, large items, or items for recycling. These wastes must be put in the local council issued garbage bags, which may be purchased from all major supermarkets and small convenient stores. The bags come in a variety of sizes, ranging from 5L to 100L. The most commonly used ones are 10L and 20Ls.

Food Waste

Food waste is used as feed and compost in Korea. Before discarding the wastes, they should be drained of all fluids and not be mixed with other non-food articles, such as plastic bag or lids. In an apartment complex, food wastes must be disposed of in the designated collection point. For private houses or villas, a food waste basket, along with a stamp duty sticker that may be purchased from convenient stores, must be used an left by the roadside, where it is collected by the city disposal unit on daily basis.

Recyclable Items

Recyclable wastes need to be sub-divided into different categories (see table below), which include paper, glass, plastic and cans. These wastes may be taken to assigned places on assigned dates to be collected, or they may be put into plastic bags (preferably transparent ones) and left by the roadside. There is no charge for the disposal of these wastes, and they are not collected on a daily basis.

Type Suitable for Recycling Unsuitable for Recycling
Paper Newspaper, books, notebooks, wrapping paper, cardboard, paper bags, and paper containers Paper bags and cups sealed in plastic
Glsss Glass beer and wine bottles, other alcoholic glass bottles, soda bottles and ones with the glass sign Plate glass, mirrors, heat resisting food containers, colored glass, cosmetic containers, and china
Can Soda cans, spray cans, butane cans, aluminum cans, stained glass, tool, wire, tin Paint containers, oil containers or other toxic substances
Styrofoam Packing materials for electronic products, containers for fish and fruit, clear instant cup noodles Disposable dishes
Plastic Items marked with PET,HIPE,LDPE,PP,PS,PVC,OT Button, pockets, toys, baby walkers, telephones, disposable camera, electronic heaters
Milk Carton Milk cartons
Fluorescent Light Undamaged fluorescent light and lamp Damaged ones
Plastic Bag Plastic bags (white and black), noodles container Dirty plastic bag
Batteries Batteries should be discharged and disposed of in the collection bins located at your local ‘dong’ (community) office.

Large Items

For items such as refrigerators, televisions, washing machines, and pianos, a disposable sticker is available for purchase from the “dong” (community) center. Alternatively, an appointment may be made online for collection. The price of the sticker depends on the type and size of the product, ranging from 1,000 KRW to 15,000 KRW.