The absence of rubbish bins on Japan’s streets is a bit of a mystery to many tourists. There are numerous posts on online forums asking about it and Tripadvisor even highlights the fact visitors may struggle to dispose of their trash.
There is, of course, a reason for this dearth of dustbins.
With Japan’s rapid industrialization in the post-war years, waste started to become a major problem. Tokyo in particular was throwing out so much that it was running out of landfill space.
A series of waste management laws in the 1990s targeted the problem, introducing strict recycling laws and clamping down on what could go into landfill.