Skip main navigation

‘Smart’ waste management

Grace de Leon and Michael Healy from the Christchurch city council discuss their 'smart' solution to waste management.
The reason that we have selected this is because they are solar compacting bins, they have ten times the capacity of the regular bins, and it sends notification when it’s about 80% full so that the people who’s collecting the bins or emptying the rubbish bins can plan their journey on when they can actually come and empty the bins. [Chris Vas]: So, how did you get the community engaged in this initiative?
So, for example, in the summer period if we can see that we need to empty the bins more frequently, then we can prepare during the summer period that this is how we would schedule the emptying of these particular rubbish bins. [Chris Vas]: Right, so predominantly data informing a lot of strategy at the Council level but also with that level of efficiency, are you thinking of deploying the same Bigbelly bins around Christchurch and beyond?
So that’s a big change in efficiency but also from a carbon neutrality point of view, you know, that’s a lot of kilometres travelled that you can avoid as well. [Grace de Leon]: And in Sumner, for example, there are already six bins that’s been installed there and part of our recommendation as well is that instead of having three or four of the regular bins, we remove those bins and then just replace it with just one bin which is more efficient. [Chris Vas]: Right. Now, clearly with these initiatives and trials not everything goes to plan. Any key challenges that you all encountered during the process?
That was Grace de Leon and Michael Healy, the Innovation Leads of the Smart Christchurch program talking to us about the deployment of the Bigbelly bins here in Christchurch.

In this section, Grace de Leon and Michael Healy, discuss how the smart Christchurch approach of working with the innovation community, putting in place trials, using communication channels to engage with the community has helped address tricky problems.


Read the article on how how Christchurch is solving its waste management issue.

This article is from the free online

Smart Cities: Social Change Through Technology

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Our purpose is to transform access to education.

We offer a diverse selection of courses from leading universities and cultural institutions from around the world. These are delivered one step at a time, and are accessible on mobile, tablet and desktop, so you can fit learning around your life.

We believe learning should be an enjoyable, social experience, so our courses offer the opportunity to discuss what you’re learning with others as you go, helping you make fresh discoveries and form new ideas.
You can unlock new opportunities with unlimited access to hundreds of online short courses for a year by subscribing to our Unlimited package. Build your knowledge with top universities and organisations.

Learn more about how FutureLearn is transforming access to education