7 Types of Recycling at HDB Housing Estates in Singapore

7 Types of Recycling at HDB Housing Estates in Singapore

Do you know that there are 7 common types of formal and informal recycling at HDB housing estates in Singapore? If you’re staying in a HDB flat, you would likely come across or participate in one or more of those types of recycling.

Let’s take a look at the 7 common types of recycling in HDB estates:

1) National Recycling Programme (NRP)

The National Environment Agency (NEA) has implemented the National Recycling Programme (NRP) since 2001, where recycling bags or bins are given to residents living in HDB housing estates and landed properties. These recycling bags and bins are provided by the licensed recycling contractors and the recyclables are collected once every two weeks at the doorstep.

2) Centralised Recycling Depositories (CRDs)

To complement the NRP, NEA has requested the recycling contractors to place centralised recycling depositories (CRDs) at all HDB estates, since August 2007. There will be a CRD for every 5 blocks of flats and the locations of the CRDs can be found at OneMap under the Environment – Recycling Bins theme.

3) Recycling Exchange

The recycling contractors usually organise a recycling exchange once a month by working with the Residents’ Committee (RC) to set up recycling stations for residents to exchange their recyclables for cash or food items. For example, Colex has the Cash for Trash Programme in the Jurong sector, and Veolia has the Recycling Exchange Initiative (REIT) in the Pasir Ris-Tampines, Bedok, and Tanglin-Bukit Merah sectors.

4) Tzu Chi Recycling Day

During the Tzu Chi Recycling Day, which falls on every second Sunday of the month from 8.30am to 11.30am, the Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation volunteers will set up recycling points at housing estates in 14 locations across the island. The volunteers encourage residents to bring their recyclable items from their houses and to help in the sorting of the items.

5) School Recycling Collection

There are frequent school recycling collection initiated by students to collect newspapers and old clothing for fundraising or for charity. The students doing the recycling collection for an area usually have to work with the licensed recycling contractor who are in-charge of the NRP for that area, and sell the recyclables to them.

6) Karang Guni Recycling Collection

The traditional unlicensed karang guni man or rag-and-bone man goes from door-to-door to collect items from residents, such as newspapers, televisions, radios, and computers. The karang guni man usually pays residents for the items. The items are sold to a waste recycling company or to a secondhand dealer.

7) Informal Recycling Collection

The informal recycling collection is usually done by the unlicensed poor elderly, who go through the rubbish bins in the neighbourhood and pick up recyclables such as newspapers, carton boxes and drink cans, from the bins. They usually sell the recyclables to a waste recycling company or to a secondhand dealer.


  • byShen xiaoying
    Posted February 11, 2011 9:36 pm 0Likes

    Yeah,I really like the recycling programme. And I want to put on my own efforts. But in my HDB ,I do not have the bags to recycle my things

    • byEugene
      Posted February 12, 2011 3:00 pm 0Likes

      Hi xiaoying, you should receive recycling bins if you’re staying in HDB estates. Feedback to NEA if you have not received the bags.

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  • byKai
    Posted January 13, 2012 5:10 pm 0Likes

    Great summary. Was wondering if there are any community based recycling programmes, or something that tackles the entire lack-of-recycling-consciousness in Singapore.

    Personal observation is that waste disposal in our flats are way too convenient. Just open up the refuse chute and pop the waste bag in. Heading down to the segregation recycling bins are seen as too much of a hassle.

    Anyway, Cash for thrash seems pretty interesting. Will probably head down this coming weekend to take a look.

  • bymages
    Posted May 14, 2015 1:48 pm 0Likes

    I have some clothes. Can someone come and get it.

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