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December 8, 2012

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City steps up efforts to collect old clothes

THE city will add another 4,000 "panda bins" to collect old clothes in communities next year to help out less fortunate people and reduce garbage, authorities said yesterday.

Some of the used clothes in good condition will be donated to people in poor areas in other parts of the country while the rest will be processed into renewable raw materials.

People are encouraged to find the panda-shaped bins near their homes to support the campaign and prevent used clothes from entering the second-hand market, which may lead to bacteria problems.

There are presently about 980 "panda bins" at 935 residential communities in Shanghai. Nearly 100 kilograms of used clothes are collected per month on average at each bin. All communities in the Pudong New Area and Yangpu and Jing'an districts have introduced the bins. Jiading, Baoshan, Changning, Putuo and Qingpu districts still don't have any "panda bins."

"Used clothes can be processed into textile, industrial and construction materials and be turned into jeans, nonwoven fabrics and seat stuffing for cars, just to list a few," said Yang Yinghong, general manager of Shanghai Yuanyuan Co Ltd, the city's only authorized company dedicated to the collection, classification and reuse of clothes thrown away by residents.

Most used clothes have already been washed by residents before they are put into the bins, which are emptied every week, Yang said.

A batch of clothes weighing 2 tons from these bins is ready to be transported to some poor areas in the Yellow Mountain region of Anhui Province.

Some clothes have been donated to schools in Pudong.

People can apply online if they want to get some old clothes.


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