Langkawi being an island with over a million visitors each year, waste management becomes increasingly problematic. In addition to the abundance of plastic bags and styrofoam containers used on a daily basis, the rubbish just stacks up. What to do? Landfills and incinerators are a solution. However, the long term answer for the majority of the rubbish is recycling. And recycling in Langkawi is easier than you may think!
Most Expats in Langkawi are familiar with recycling in their home countries. We arrived here from San Francisco where 80% of the rubbish is recycled. So we started hording our recyclable materials from day one; paper, aluminum, metal and glass. Little did we know that it would take some bit of time to find a reliable recycle business to take these materials, so they just kept piling up. We were quite happy to discard our ‘collections’ when re-cycle options became more apparent.
Zens Enterprise is owned by Cheah Song Hui and is located just north out of Ulu Melaka on Jalan Ulu Melaka on the left hand side of the road. They recycle metals, plastic and paper. When I asked about glass Cheah quickly stated that it was too expensive to recycle due to the shipping cost to the mainland.
Cheah first came to Langkawi with his father at the age of 2. He lived here until he moved to the mainland and became involved in the construction business. Growing tired of the construction trade and longing for a simpler lifestyle Cheah moved back ot Langkawi in 2007 and started the recycle company with a friend.
Cheah says that the move has made him happy. He likes the quiet and peaceful pace of life and Zens Enterprise allows him to give back to the community that has become his home. Open every day except Fridays. DIRECTIONS
*This recycle center is no longer operating: Updated January 2018
*In addition to recycling, the community can also help Keep Langkawi GREEN by decreasing their use of plastic bags and styrofoam. Bringing your own food containers and re-usable bags for shopping and takeaway foods can have a positive impact!
Yang Razlan says
More awareness is needed to get people into keeping the island clean and green. Your article is a good start and sincerely hope it will spread on a wider scale to the islanders.
The problem with Malaysians is, just because they know that at the end of the day the local authorities or like wise will clean up the rubbish, its ok for them to throw rubbish as they like.
Education to the young and school children is the key to getting this on a proper track,
Vanessa Workman says
I think that old habits die, and when all those natural wrappers and containers, like banana leaves and baskets, got replaced by styrofoam and plastic bags..well it took the planet a few years to realize the outcome. All over the world, not just in Malaysia. We were very happy to find recycling is available in Langkawi and I’ve found it much handier to tote my take away in a tiffen these days. Much easier to eat out of too. But those plastic drink bags are quite inconvenient!:D I actually heard from an Ex-pat that he had heard that having garbage strewn in your yard was a sign of prosperity! Crazy huh? There are people in Langkawi more than willing to help with the ‘man’power of spreading the word and having educational demonstrations and lectures. They just need the venue, boleh! And thank you for the comment.
Hi, is this center still around? i would like to contact them… thanks
Vanessa Workman says
Hi Ann, as far as I know it is. Unfortunately I have no phone number. They are closed on Fridays. There is a tall metal fence around the place and those bundles can often be seen outside the gate. :)
So is there any other recycling place in langkawi nowadays?
I saw there are recycling cages, which are empty most of the time. But do you know where its content is taken to?
It is written Idaman environement on it, who i sent an email to but never replied.
Vanessa Workman says
Hi Marine, I just asked a friend who works at Frangipani and she says the cages are empty because they get cleaned out by Idaman. The public can leave their recycles in the cages or they can take to Idaman themselves. In Malaysia if I send an email and get no response within a couple of days, I resend until I do. (within reason of course). Other than that, Idaman looks like the go to recycle folks at this time.