Berlin gov’t opens recycling dep’t store

A city-run secondhand shop in Berlin is aimed at reducing waste.

Berlin launched a facility in September that sells items that might otherwise be thrown away in the city’s bid to reduce waste. The state-run facility also serves as an education center that encourages recycling, repairing, and reusing.

The store, called B-Wa(h)renhaus, covers 7,000 sq. ft, functions like a secondhand shop, with its used and upcycled clothing, electronics, accessories, furniture, and others. According to Bloomberg, the store is located in an area with “established, middle-of-the-road” department stores, as a way to legitimise the store, especially since other secondhand shops are usually only in flea markets or hip locations.

“Three years ago, we started collecting all kinds of used goods that people have in their cellars or attics,” says city spokesperson Dorothee Winden to Bloomberg. “Things that are well-preserved and functioning but aren’t being used anymore. The goal is to give these things a new life with somebody who can use them.”

Berlin’s ruling center-left/Green/left coalition established this as part of their larger plan to slash waste in all aspects of the city’s economy.

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