For a long time, it was viewed as "easier" to ship plastic trash around the world than to process it locally, but things are are going to have to change. In January, China stopped importing wealthy nations' waste. New buyers (often in illegal factories) in SE Asia are completely overwhelmed with the volume. Much is ending up in the ocean. Many SE Asian countries are moving to ban plastic waste imports now as well.
Trash in general is projected to grow by 70% in 30 years. With an already overwhelming amount of waste, we cannot afford to continue with business as usual. We need an overall reduction of single-use plastic and local recycling infrastructure that meaningfully reuses the waste we’ve already created --shipping our waste elsewhere is not a solution. “What the China ban told the world is that we must rethink plastic use globally and we of this generation must solve the problem." -Yeo Bee Yin, Malaysian Minister of the Environment
Full @nationalgeographic article here: www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/2018/11/china-ban-plastic-trash-imports-shifts-waste-crisis-southeast-asia-malaysia/
Source of image: Amy L. Brooks, Shunli Wang and Jenna R. Jambeck. The Chinese import ban and its impact on global plastic waste trade. Science Advances Vol. 4, no. 6. 20 Jun 2018. DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aat0131
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