The Consorcio group (www.madeiraconsorcio.com) visited with a small group in Porto Novo at the Recycling and Triage station Estação de Transferência da Zona Leste e de Triagem da Madeira (ETZL/ET) (https://arm.pt/residuos/tratamento/).
The recycling service on the island (including P Santo) consists of three plants: recycling/triage in Este: Meia Legua/Ribeira Brava, Leste Porto Novo, and the burning plant in Meira Serra.
We toured the facilities with ARM (state owned) collaborators Gorete and Ana Vera, a very interesting experience!
All rubbish is taken there: plastic/ packaging, glass, paper /card boxes and undifferentiated rubbish (which is compacted before being taken to Meia Serra for burning). The station also collects green cuts which go to Meia Serra for composting, and old chairs and metal scrap.
Mattresses are collected (burnt in Meia Serra), and furniture, the “monsters, go to the mainland, as well as car tires.
The facility has several rubbish piles and spits out neat packages of aluminum cans (can be 100% recycled), cans, non-corrosive metal, paper, carton, glass and then PET bottles and household cleaning bottles.
The facility has a huge machine which is able to do the separation with optical means, magnets and such. In the end, a manual check for recyclable material finishes the circuit.
The recycling quality seems to be good. Around ten containers are shipped to the mainland per month and sold to recycling companies. They pay for the material; this goes helps offset the costs of the service. The mainland recipients do not refuse the material from Madeira, which means that the rubbish delivered is, so to speak, of high quality.
The “Este” station in Porto Novo has about 80 workers. The staff gets a bit more than minimum salary, and most of them live near Porto Novo.