“BOSSNETT” – The Automatic Underground Waste System


1. Area of sustainability: Waste

2. About the technology

  • In our society, and especially on Manhattan, the city waste system has a massive room for improvement. Every day new waste from residents in the city fill up waste containers or bags are left lying around in the streets waiting for the garbage trucks to come and pick it up.
  • Garbage trucks have to maneuver through narrow streets while the streets are smelly and rats have a field day eating all the discarded food. What if the issues of garbage trucks, smelly waste in the streets, and rats could be removed just by using modern technology?
  • This is what the government owned garbage company BIR in Bergen, Norway has found a suitable solution to. Bergen is a city with narrow streets and garbage was known to be overflowing the few waste containers there was in the streets and it was not a pretty sight. The new technology, named “Bossnett”, lets residents throw their trash into garbage tubes all around the city, where the trash drops into an underground pipe system and is vacuumed into a greater storage unit in the outskirts of the city which is regularly emptied. No need for garbage trucks driving around in the city, no smelly trash along the pathways, and rats have to go elsewhere to find their meal for the day. In addition, it will make it easier for people to recycle using the different tubes. This could be a good solution for many cities in the world.

bir bossnett

3. Stakeholders in the new technology

  • The main users of the trash network, i.e. the residents of the city.
  • The management of the garbage facility
  • Manufacturers of the pipe network
  • Manufacturers of the above-ground tubes


4. Deployment

  • Market the new technology to the population as something positive and make the residents excited to use it.
  • Creating enough garbage tubes around the city to make it easy for everyone to dispose of their trash.
  • Implement a simple and sustainable recycling plan, so that every part of the waste that can be reused will be reused.


Main article:

“NYC, check out a Norwegian solution to waste disposal”, Terje Strøm, March 31st 2016, Retrieved Sept. 20th 2017 from:  http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20160331/OPINION/160339996/nyc-check-out-a-norwegian-solution-to-waste-disposal

Supporting articles:

“BOSSNETT”, Bergen Automatic Underground Waste System: http://www.razemdlaklimatu.eu/images/dobre_praktyki/Bergen_Waste_system.pdf

Envac Automated Waste Collection Secures National Energy Globe Award for Bergen: https://waste-management-world.com/a/envac-automated-waste-collection-secures-national-energy-globe-award-for-bergen

Image sources:


Click to access Bergen_Waste_system.pdf

UNI: ms5584


Edit: Sept. 28th 2017 as instructed by the professor, this is the comment I posted on this blogpost on Sept 21st. https://makeasmartcity.com/2017/09/21/smarter-street-lighting/

“This is a great idea. A problem in many big cities are that they are not able to maintain and repair the lights that go out fast enough. And many areas are left dark in the night over a long period of time. This can be unsafe for pedestrians, and having a more illuminated street also helps with the feeling of safety. This is also a positive side effect with this technology.”


6 thoughts on ““BOSSNETT” – The Automatic Underground Waste System

  1. For a couple of years, I have been trying to figure out the best way to manage waste, considering not only European countries but also developing countries. Ofcourse this solution appeared for our analysis, but I believe that because of the complexities is not even in the portfolio of many countries. I think in countries that are looking to improve waste management moving from Landfill to WTE there must be something else to propose. While I would love to promote this alternative you are showing us, it has been super difficult to find out prices, and more information. Anyway, I think is a great idea.


  2. This is a very interesting idea and one that could have substantial benefits for New York City. As the largest city in the U.S., NYC generates more waste than any city in the U.S., and the population density and small streets make garbage removal very complicated. The city operates over 1,500 of its own collection vehicles and contracts with an additional nearly 250 private companies to complete its collection network. Those collection vehicles are typically diesel powered, which results in a significant amount of pollution being released into the city air. BOSSNET is an interesting technology that could solve this, and would also have the added benefit of ensuring that waste receptacles on street corners don’t overflow and cause further pollution.

    One other interesting benefit of the BOSSNET system is the ability to convert the non-recyclable waste back into energy through incineration, which it then used to power the city (making better use of non-recyclable waste then landfilling). Also, because the waste is collected centrally, it makes automated recycling systems more efficient and ensures a greater proportion of recyclable materials end up being recycled.


  3. Similar technology is already in used in Roosevelt Island of NYC (http://www.npr.org/2017/07/26/539304811/how-new-york-s-roosevelt-island-sucks-away-summer-trash-stink). The pneumatic tube waste collection system is one of the largest in the world as it sucks up roughly 10 tons of trash from the island’s 12,000 residents each day. Installed in the 1970s, the system is more than 40 years old. It is much more difficult to build the same system in Manhattan due to existing infrastructures, such as subway system, and high retrofit costs.


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