Bornholm will be a place where all waste is reused

The sunshine island in the Baltic Sea will as the first place in the western world, treat all waste as a resource when the local waste company turns off the incinerator in 2032. Everything that the locals and the many tourists call waste today, will be used again, or have a new life in other products.

By Brian Kjær Johansen

Imagine a society where everything that is considered waste today has value and is no longer just something to be thrown in the trash.
Bornholm’s regional municipality, and Bofa, the municipal waste management company of Bornholm, are working on making the vision, “Bornholm shows the way – without waste 2032” a reality. The waste vision is part of Bornholm’s overall green strategy “Bright Green Island”.

In approximately 13 years, in the year 2032, a new green reality awaits. The waste system, as we know it today, with containers for combustible waste and waste incineration in large furnaces, will be gone.

Waste such as cotton swabs, armchairs and carpets will no longer be thrown into the incinerator, but instead, have new life as recycling, or become part of another product.

Read more about Bornholm’s ambitious waste vision here.

“We can’t do it today. Several things need to happen between now and 2032 for this to be possible, “says BOFA manager, Jens Hjul-Nielsen and continues:

“It’s about better sorting, about new and smarter technological treatments, and dialogue with our users. When we start the vision “Bornholm shows the way – without waste 2032″, we will need a lot of help, from both locals and the thousands of tourists who visit the island every year”

According to BOFA, Bornholm is an obvious place to develop competences in green transition and circular economy. The island has a fully developed infrastructure and a population that corresponds to approximately one per cent of the Danish population.
Experience and knowledge can, therefore, be transferred to similar projects in Denmark and other places in the world.

When we start the vision “Bornholm shows the way – without waste 2032, we will need a lot of help, from both locals and the thousands of tourists who visit the island every year”

Jens Hjul-Nielsen, manager at BOFA

Bornholm’s waste vision, which was voted through by a unanimous municipal council in December 2018, has already come a long way. A large number of articles in newspapers, lifestyle magazines and trade journals, as well as a large and in-depth article in the magazine National Geographic, have put the Danish island on the green world map.

“The great publicity regarding the waste vision on Bornholm has given us some potential partners from all over the world,” says Jens Hjul-Nielsen, and elaborates:

“We cannot solve this task alone, so it is fantastic to get a positive response from citizens and the waste industry worldwide. We are constantly working to involve a lot of exciting partners so that together we can break the code for a waste-free society, ” the manager concludes.

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