Residential communities are introducing new initiatives for Shanghai's "green account" scheme, the city's environmental authorities said yesterday.
The initiatives include donations to old people's homes, welfare homes, and people in need, said the Shanghai Greenery and Public Sanitation Bureau.
As of last month, more than 4 million households have been enrolled in the green account scheme, which was launched in 2013. It aims to get people to sort their rubbish for recycling.
The scheme uses a point system in which account holders earn points by placing dry and wet rubbish in the appropriate disposal bins.
The points are redeeemable for incentives such as milk, soup, toothpaste, phonecards, tickets to tourist attractions, and payment of utility bills. Points can also be redeemed for various online supermarket coupons, and coupons to use shared bicycles.
In Songjiang District, the green account scheme covers 395,000 households, which have gained more than 300 million points. And 130 million of those points have not been redeemed.
In the Fangsong neighborhood, residents donated points to redeem more than 300 cotton-padded jackets, which were given to the city's rubbish-sorting workers who work outdoors.
The total number of "green account" points in Shanghai amounts to 1.2 billion. Just 40 percent of the points had been redeemed as of January this year, said the bureau.
Authorities plan to increase the number of venues for residents to redeem points at wet markets and parks.
The city's environmental authorities have partnered with Alipay to attract young residents.