An innovative container that’s installed partially underground has proven advantages over more traditional aboveground bins. The underground temperature keeps waste cool; this virtually eliminates odour or pests and the container doesn’t need to be emptied until full — which can take up to one year.
The Molok — manufactured by Molok North America Ltd. — occupies only a small aboveground footprint. It ranges from 50 cm to 1.6 metres in diameter with a capacity of 300 to 5,000 litres.
The “Mini-Molok” (300 litres) is used mainly in parks for light waste that can be emptied by hand. Small (1,300 litres), medium (3,000 litres) and large (5,000 litres) sizes are available. The bigger units need lifting equipment to empty such as a hydraulic arm, loader or backhoe (that should be able to lift to a height of approximately 4 metres and support up to 1,200 kilograms).
The container is stationary once installed. Inside, a durable lifting bag has a bottom that opens via a trigger mechanism. When the mechanism is released the insides of the bag drops into the truck. It takes about five minutes to empty one Molok unit with a truck equipped with a lift arm. This allows personnel to avoid waste handling and reduces health hazards. (The lifting bag is reusable.)
With such a variety of sizes, recycling depots are easily established. For instance, a depot could include a large container for mixed waste, medium for paper, small or medium for other recyclables and small for organic waste. A “Bio-Molok” can be used to collect organic waste; the bottom of the container is designed to trap to trap moisture and produce composting material. People generally don’t mind taking their organics to the container since there are virtually no odours or insects.
Molok bins are made of recyclable rotation-molded polyethylene. They’re manufactured in various countries around the world and are in use in more than 20, including Canada and the United States.
Marja Loshkov is president of Molok North America Ltd. in Mount Forest, Ontario.