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Chinese recycling ban places greater obligations on Government and manufacturers to act – Stanley

16 August, 2017 - by Brian Stanley TD

Sinn Féin Environment Spokesperson Brian Stanley TD has said that with China, the destination for most of Ireland’s recyclable waste, due to stop taking many types of recycling material by the end of the year the emphasis is placed even further on the glaring need to reduce waste at source.

Deputy Stanley said that action is needed on this instead of pushing the burden onto householders and having large volumes of waste shipped abroad.

The Laois TD said:

“China has notified the World Trade Organisation that it intends to ban taking plastics and unsorted paper by year’s end. With 87% of Europe’s plastic waste going to China, this decision will hit many European states, including Ireland.

“The changes made to household waste charges by government in June this year accounted in no way for waste reduction. We need to put an obligation on producers to reduce packaging instead of passing on the burden to the householder to pay for packaging disposal. We need a different approach.

“In the first instance, we must tackle waste at source and reduce the massive volumes of waste being produced by manufacturers and wholesalers. I introduced a Bill in July on the introduction of a deposit recycling scheme for plastic containers, similar schemes exist across many European countries.

“What is being ignored is the concept of ‘reduce and reuse’. Reduction at source is key as currently people are paying twice. They pay for a product and then pay for the disposal of its packaging. There is a conveyor belt of waste that will not stop unless the producer is forced to reduce the amount of excess packaging in the first instance.” 

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