Giarratana and Castelbuono are two villages in Sicily and can be considered virtuous places. In fact, some months ago, these villages gave a lesson of civility and environmental sensibility to many larger towns in Italy....
The Country requests citizens to differentiate the garbage, separating paper, plastic, and organic waste, such as vegetables. This helps to save money and reduce pollution.
The problem is that, after the waste separation made by people in their homes, town-councils are then not always organized to collect waste separately, and everything is put together again! As a consequence, the effort of people to reduce costs coming from waste disposal is… wasted!
In Giarratana and Castelbuono the problem was serious, as the streets are so narrow that they do not allow the waste collection vans to reach houses.
A clever solution was found: the door to door collection is done by …donkeys!
They are small, but very strong. Every donkey carries wicker baskets, similar to those once used for the grape harvest. Every basket is reserved for a different garbage material. Using donkey instead of vans is also cheaper.
A van costs about 30 thousand Euros; the cost for a donkey 3/5 years old is between 700 and 1500 Euros.
Good savings, isn’t it? And of course, donkeys do not need any gas or insurance!
To read more about Sicily : All about the Italian Region of Sicily.