Bali startup tackling Indonesia’s waste issue
This has led to significant environmental pollution, damaging both the health of citizens and the natural beauty of the country. In an attempt to tackle this problem, NoLimbah, a Bali-based start-up, has come up with an innovative solution. But how did the idea for NoLimbah come about and how does it work?
The inspiration for NoLimbah
Charlotte, the founder of NoLimbah, and her team were inspired to start the company after realizing that NGO beach cleanups would not solve Bali’s litter problem at its source. They realized that the existing waste management systems in Bali were inadequate, with limited options available to the population. People often dump or burn waste illegally or pay for private collection services with irregular service.
The NoLimbah Solution
NoLimbah’s solution uses technology similar to food delivery and ride-sharing apps to make waste management easier and more rewarding. The app connects homes and businesses in Bali with Pemulung collectors who are available in real time. When a collector accepts a collection request, they are available for service immediately, ensuring a timely and efficient waste management process. This method offers greater reliability and ease of use than existing private waste collection services.
Who are Pemulung?
Pemulung are locals that collect and recycle waste. This provides them with an income and helps keep Bali clean at the same time. But as it is, many pemulung have to drive aimlessly in the hope of finding enough debris to make enough money to survive and the pemulung are often looked down on for their work.
With the NoLimbah application, it aims to provide them with optimized work routes so that they can collect waste efficiently. As well as creating a community that respects Bali’s underappreciated “garbage heroes”.
A win-win partnership
Instead of having to pay for garbage collection, the locals now receive money for their waste, while the Pemulung are able to collect waste more efficiently, saving them time and making it easier for them to increase their income. NoLimbah charges a 20% transaction fee on the money earned by locals, while foreigners receive free waste collection without any financial compensation. This strategy allows NoLimbah to grow and expand its operations!
Where is NoLimbah Active?
NoLimbah is currently in its beta testing phase and operates in two towns in Bali: Desa Ayunan and Desa Baha. They are exploring the possibility of expanding to additional villages in the Tabanan regency and Mengwi area, as well as a broader community, including both locals and foreigners in the city. The app is available on Android and will soon be available on iOS as well, and anyone can sign up for its waiting list.
What happens to the waste?
Once the waste is collected, the collectors take it to a sorting point, either owned by you or owned by your employer. At the sorting outlet, collectors clean and separate recyclable waste, which is then sold to processing plants, often located in Java, for conversion into pellets and new products. NoLimbah works with Pemulung to ensure that as much waste as possible is properly managed. The Pemulung resell the waste to recycling centers and their income depends on the amount of waste they resell. This creates an incentive for them to ensure proper waste management.
What are NoLimbah’s future plans?
NoLimbah has ambitious plans to expand its reach and grow its user base. Their goal is to make their app accessible to more people, including those in cities. Their goal is to collect 10 tons of recyclable waste in the next two years, which requires significant effort to change people’s behavior. They also plan to establish more alliances with sustainable brands to promote the use of products that reduce waste generation, such as water filters to make tap water drinkable. Additionally, they plan to develop a B2B app to better connect their collectors with recycling facilities, ensuring more waste is properly managed.
Why use NoLimbah instead of regular garbage collection services?
NoLimbah is of interest to any household or business in Indonesia that generates waste. Their solution is free to households, and businesses will only be charged a minimal fee, which is significantly lower than the cost of existing private waste collection services. Additionally, NoLimbah offers greater reliability as it connects users with collectors that are available in real time. Based on their beta testing experience, the build time is typically only 15-20 minutes on average.
What types of waste are eligible to be collected?
Currently, their collection service includes cardboard, metal, certain types of glass (such as Bintang bottles) and plastics. However, they are actively seeking partnerships to expand the variety of waste our collectors can handle in the future, including residual waste.
His relationship with Pemulung
NoLimbah spends significant effort recruiting and training collectors. The individualized approach begins with the identification of potential partners. They establish a personal relationship with each collector, providing training and explaining the long-term benefits of using the app. They then provide ongoing support and monitor collections to ensure smooth operations.
How you can help NoLimbah in the fight against pollution
1) By downloading the app and joining the waiting list. The more people who show interest, the faster they can grow and make a real difference in the community.
2) Support his crowdfunding campaign here! Even a small donation can have a big impact. For example, a donation of $30 to $40 can provide a collector with phone credit for an entire year, a donation of $70 can provide health insurance for a year.
3) Follow NoLimbah on Instagram here to stay up to date on her progress and get tips on sustainable living.
4) Be aware of your own behavior at home. Remember that the best waste is the one that is not generated. The small actions you take to reduce waste can make a big difference in the long run!