As an avid recycler, upon arriving in Jordan it shocked me to see that there is no municipal recycling offered. I cringed every time I would toss a bottle or piece of paper into the trash. To make this even worse, the tap water is not drinkable in Jordan, so that means A LOT of plastic bottles are being used. I tried to come up with my own ways to minimize my personal contribution of plastic bottles to the landfills of Jordan with this simple solution – A water pump and water cooler jugs.
You can buy the “water pump” to attach to any water cooler jug at Carrefour and the large cooler size jugs at most any supermarket. If you don’t see the cooler jugs right away, you can ask, they most likely have them in the warehouse. The Aquafina 12 liter jug pictured above costs around 2.5 JD but is not refillable, whereas the Nestle 18.9 liter jug costs 5 JD for the first full jug, and 2.70 JD to refill it afterwards at the same place you bought it.
But even with these simple environmental life hacks, I still had a LOT of recycling piling up at home, so I did a bit of research to find out if there was any possible way to recycle in Amman, and I came across the following places:
BE Environmental Services بيئي
BE Environmental Services (BE) was founded in 2008 with the “aim to reduce the impact of waste on the environment and to maximize its resource value to the benefit of the Jordanian economy and population”. They have a domestic recycling center, dubbed “Cozmo Recycling Centre”, open to the public where you can bring your recyclables 7 days a week.
Location: Opposite the COZMO Supermarket main entrance carpark at the 7th Circle in Sweifieh
They accept the following items for recycling:
- Paper of any kind
- Any metal, including aluminum (e.g. soda cans), steel and other scrap
- Polyehtylene terephtalate (PET) bottles (e.g. plastic water and soda bottles) and all other plastic materials, including wrappings, bags, containers, boxes, Styrofoam etc.
- Wood scraps including broken furniture, pallets, cable rolls etc.
- Printer and copier toner cartridges, batteries of any size and kind
- Old bread and used cooking oil
FYI – they do not accept glass because there are no glass recycling plants in Jordan (I need to get one of these!)
BE also offers Waste Management Services for businesses to recycle on-site and is currently working on a reward system to encourage everyone to separate at the source, whether at home or at the office.
To find out more you can contact them on the BE Environmental Services Facebook page.
ESP – Environmental Solutions Pioneer
Update: ESP app has been discontinued due to lack of funds. I am leaving the information in the case you want to contact them to help support their cause.
ESP is an app which allows users to manage their household waste at the click of a button. All you have to do is request the ESP collection wagon via the app and it will arrive at your destination within 24 hours (for free!). They will collect aluminum, non-ferrous metals, plastic bottles, paper, and cardboard.
Marche Gourmet Stores
Marche Gourmet Stores supermarket in Abdoun has paper, cans, and metals recycling bins outside their doors.
In addition to their workshop, they also have a recycling box where you can drop off your plastic, glass, metal and paper 24/7.
Have a lot of paper and cardboard stockpiled? Did you know you can bring it to IKEA’s recycling center? Read more about IKEA’s go green local initiatives here.
Nour Al Barakah
You may have heard of Nour Al Barakah because they have a farmer’s market every Saturday at their community garden off Mecca Street (map). But they are also pros at recycling organic waste to turn it into composted soil that can be reused. If you don’t want to follow our guide to compost at home just yet, then you can drop off your compostable waste (no meat, no bones) in a cardboard box at the Nour Al Barakah center and they will do it for you!
PRAKTI is a Jordanian start-up which turns old pieces into something new. Their workshop is located in Swefieh and there you can drop-off discarded wood, plastic bottles, old ropes, and old furniture.
Do you know other places in Amman to recycle? Let me know in the comments below…