Turkey, fingerprints examined to detect litterers

Fingerprints to fine litterers in Turkey

Some provinces in Turkey have started using forensic equipment to identify and punish litterers in public spaces.

Fingerprints to identify and fine litterers: this is the measure that the authorities in the province of Isparta, in western Turkey, have decided to implement. They want to use this forensic method to be able to prosecute those who dirty public spaces.

As reported by the local press, Turkish police have begun using specialized equipment in Isparta to detect fingerprints to identify those who throw garbage in public places such as promenades, parks, religious centers or cemeteries.

After collecting the traces left in the thrown waste – for example cigarette butts, or plastic or glass bottles – and examining them in a laboratory, the objective is to identify those responsible for having thrown garbage on public placees, and to initiate legal proceedings against the identified persons, under charges of “deliberately or negligently contaminating the environment” or “causing damage to cemeteries and places of worship”.

In recent years, Turkey has undertaken an effort to recycle its urban solid waste, thanks to initiatives such as the “Zero Waste Project” (Sıfır Atık Projesi), promoted by the wife of the Turkish president, Emine Erdoğan, and under which the recycling rate has increased from 13% to 27% between 2017 and 2022: in that period, more than 4 million tons of plastic, 400,000 tons of metals, 1.5 million tons of organic waste and 1.7 million tons of glass have been recycled.

The goal of the Turkish government is that by 2035 the level of garbage recycling will increase to 60%, and to recycle 100% of the waste generated in the country by the year 2053.