The 4-in-1 Recycling Program

The 4-in-1 recycling program promoted by the EPA since January 1997 is a system that uses recycling, clearance, and disposal fees collected from manufacturers and importers to establish a Recycling Fund, which is then used to subsidize the recycling disposal system and extend the responsibility of these enterprises. This system provides adequate economic incentives to encourage the development of recycling and reuse industries and to create output value and employment opportunities. This specially designed feedback mechanism makes local cleaning teams and the community even more involved in recycling. The ultimate beneficiaries are everyone living on this land.

Combining the four strengths, a complete recycling network was established to ensure that resource materials shall be recycled, reused, or disposed of properly; and the participating people, cleaning teams, and recycling enterprises shall obtain reasonable profits or rewards. This feedback system encouraged nationwide participation. The 4-in-1 recycling program diagram is shown below:

The 4-in-1 Recycling Program
1 Public Community
To promote household waste sorting through recycling organizations established by the community. That is, to separate recyclable resources like bottles, cans, containers, paper, and waste mercury batteries from other household waste and sort them into individual categories. These resource materials and wastes are collected separately at recycling points or by cleaning teams and private recycling enterprises. After collection, these resources shall then be reused. Moreover, by subsidizing private groups, through different kinds of recycling promotion activities with the private sector, and random inspection of the status of these activities, the goal of propagating recycling work was achieved.
2 Local Authorities (Cleaning Teams)
Local authorities shall collect and dispose of resource materials and general waste separately, the implementation methods to be decided and stipulated by local authorities respectively. Income from sales of resource materials from those collected from the public or by local cleaning teams shall be fed back at a specified ratio to the people and workers who participated.
3 Recycling Enterprises
To encourage the private sector to join in recycling, recycling enterprises purchase waste resources from communities, groups, and cleaning teams at market price. In order to avoid recycling and disposal enterprises creating pollution during the recycling or disposal process of regulated recyclable waste, “Responsible Enterprise Regulated Recyclable Waste Management Regulations” and “Methods and Facilities Standards for the Recycling, Storage, Clearance, and Disposal of Regulated Recyclable Waste” were enacted as ordinances for recycling enterprises to implement recycling work.
4 Recycling Fund
Based on the principle of “Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR)”, this fund was defined so that recycling, clearance, and disposal work is the responsibility of the manufacturers, importers, and vendors. These responsible enterprises shall pay the recycling, clearance, and disposal fees, and subsidize recycling and recycling enterprises and local governments to handle the recycling, clearing, and reprocessing work. With the Fee Rate Review Committee’s oversight and the audit and certification system, it is ensured that every recyclable item will be adequately recycled and disposed of. The recycling fund is the key that has made this project successful.