Plastics export ban – The Recycling Association (RA) has warned banning the export of plastic waste would result in more landfilling and could then cause UK plastic recycling infrastructure to collapse.
Plastics export ban – Simon Ellin, Chief Executive of the Recycling Association (RA), responded to an early day motion (EDM) in Parliament, calling for a plastics exportation ban, which was also demanded by campaign group A Plastic Planet.
So far, 35 MPs have signed the EDM but is it not known if, and when, it will be debated in Parliament. Even though the EDM has no legal standing the RA is concerned it may influence the Government’s legislative direction.
Ellin argued that the Environment Agency and other agencies need to focus resources on catching the criminals who consistently export illegally, while companies exporting legitimately should have a “lighter touch focus”.
Ellin further stated: “We should definitely look to invest in our own UK plastic reprocessing infrastructure, but exports should have their place too as part of a global economy”
“By banning exports, there will be no incentive to collect these materials and the whole system will collapse. That will make it very hard to develop UK infrastructure.”
He also argues that the UK should assist developing countries in creating better collection infrastructure. Saying this is the “major problem” contributing to plastic pollution, rather than cutting off material supply to their manufacturing industries.
“A number of Asian countries have already banned plastic imports while others have placed together restrictions on plastic imports.”