Dry-wet is a separate collection system that allows to sort waste in the most efficient way and easy to follow for citizens in order to increase recycling rate

The organic fraction is, in some city areas, 50% of the total waste deposited in containers.
From 1994 onwards the separation of the 2 main fractions was planned at origin, at homes: the organic fraction on the one side (wet) and packaging and inert on the other (dry).

Development and Timescale:
The pilot test took place in a highly populated district in the city of Cordoba and later, progressively, it was extended to the rest of the city, finally covering the entire city and population. Nowadays 100% of collection in public spaces is based on this separation.

Actors involved:
Residents and associations

Legal framework:
Circular economy directives
Cordoba city council Ordinance on Urban Hygiene
State framework for waste management in Spain.

Financial framework:
• This type of collection costs 30% more than the average ordinary cost, and is calculated at €78/tonne (instead of €60/tonne).
• Furthermore, awareness raising campaigns are necessary to make the new model popular (around €30,000/year)

Use level: (%) or number of users (if possible):
100% - 328,000 inhabitants of the city of Cordoba are users of the separation model.

Possible success factors:
Only 2 waste bins/containers needed in homes and on streets for collection of the main fractions.
High potential for recycling.
Work with different associations and civil groups, communication campaigns, wide distribution of 2-section recipients.

Resources needed

Resources required are the same as for the implementation of selective collection, mandatory in Spain since 1997. It is necessary to treat waste collection in a proper MBT plant to optimisize sorting recyclable materials.

Evidence of success

Increase of packaging recovered with regard to the average for Andalucia of 230 % from 2010 to 2014, from 7,2 to 23,8 kg/inhabitant/year.
Organic waste selective collection and its aerobic fermentation allows to produce good quality compost for agricultural purposes. Experiments to test effectiveness of compost applied on agricultural soils show an increase on productivity

Difficulties encountered

The main difficulty was changing people's deep-rooted habits.
It is necessary to persevere, with ongoing campaigns to raise awareness about the importance of changing habits.

Potential for learning or transfer

It is a simple system to transfer because it is easy-to –follow for citizens and there is no important investment required in containers in comparison with other selective waste collection system. However, it is essential to design MBT plant properly and keep ongoing campaing awareness
Main institution
Sanitation of Cordoba
Andalucía, Spain (España)
Start Date
May 1994
End Date


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