Living Infomation

Comprehensive Living Guide for Foreign Residents in Japan

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Trash collection

Trash-related issues could easily become a cause of trouble with your neighbors. To establish a comfortable life for both you and others in the community, it is important to follow local rules for trash collection.

Trash separation rules

In Tokyo, trash (gomi) has to be divided into three categories (combustible trash, non-combustible trash, recyclable trash) for proper disposal. Each category is collected separately on a designated day.
*Some communities may differentiate combustible/noncombustible garbage by calling them moyasu gomi/moyasanai gomi or moyaseru gomi/moyasenai gomi instead of kanen gomi/funen gomi.

Combustible trash (moeru gomi)
Kitchen garbage, paper, wood, etc.

Non-combustible trash (moenai gomi)
Glass, chinaware, metals, etc

Recyclable trash (shigen gomi)
Bottles, cans, PET bottles, newspaper, etc.
(Examples)

Trash separation rules and how to dispose of trash vary depending on the community; contact your local authority for details about local trash rules.

How to dispose of your trash

To dispose of your trash, you are required to use trash bags designated by your local authority. Take your trash to a designated pickup point on the morning of the scheduled collection day. Trash in the wrong bag may not be picked up.

Oversize trash (sodai gomi)

To dispose of oversize trash, such as furniture or bicycles, contact your local authority (city hall) to arrange a special pickup service for a fee. The fee for a special pickup service may vary by community and also by type of items of which you wish to dispose; make sure to ask the authority about the exact fee when you arrange the service.

Four major home appliances, which are air conditioners, TV sets, refrigerators/freezers, and washing machines/clothes dryers, cannot be picked up as oversize trash. If you are replacing those items with new ones, ask the store where you are buying the new one to collect the old one. If you only need to dispose of the old one and don't know where the item was purchased, contact your local authority and ask about an appropriate procedure (residents of 23 wards should contact the Home Appliance Recycling Center).

To recycle personal computers, request the collection of your computer from its manufacturer.

For details about local regulations for trash categories, collection schedules and recycling systems, contact the trash collection/recycling authority or department in the ward (or city, town or village) where you reside.
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