Recycling contracts in Australia are under threat and a crisis is looming after China implemented its National Sword Policy on January 1, 2018, which restricted the importation of 24 categories of solid waste and limits contamination of those materials to less than 0.5 per cent. The restrictions are already being felt in the sector, with stockpiling beginning and waste collectors across the country trying to find new markets to prevent a disruption of kerbside collection services.
With several councils being recently locked out of their Material Recovery Facilities (MRFs), leaving them with no option but to send waste to landfill, there is a fear within industry that this may be just the tip of the iceberg if government doesn’t stop the talk and instead start the actions needed to avoid further pain on these pressing issues.
The use of asbestos was banned in Australia in 2004 immediately after the industry recognition of the life-threatening dangers associated with the inhalation of asbestos fibers. Medical conditions resulting from exposure to asbestos can take as long as 10 to 20 years to reveal themselves. Despite this ban, Australians still suffer from the consequences of existing buildings containing asbestos.
Facing the danger of reaching landfill capacity within 12 years, Shoalhaven City Council undertook an extensive process of consultation to find an economically and environmentally sound solution to the region’s waste issues. This process led council to Poland-based Bioelektra and its RotoSTERIL technology for utilisation in its new facility.
Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) will be bringing its circular economy solutions to Australia for the first time to provide its customers with an overview of the value of their retired assets and quantify the environmental impacts and savings achieved from their IT asset lifecycle solutions, which can be incorporated into their corporate reporting.
It has now been over a year since China introduced its National Sword policy to restrict the importation of kerbside recyclable materials from the rest of the world. The purpose of the policy was to increase the recovery of domestically generated recyclables within China and further boost its own manufacturing. The new rule is a 0.5 per cent contamination rate in Australian exported material. Few Australian Materials Recovery Facilities (MRF) were built for that level of purity.
A newly released, in-depth global survey report is highlighting how large, global companies view the transition to a circular economy and how they would benefit from increased circularity.
SC Johnson, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of household cleaning and other consumer and professional products, has become a global partner of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.
Global consumer goods brands including PepsiCo, P&G, Nestle and Unilever have recently announced their partnership with TerraCycle, a global recycling leader, to launch a green service called Loop.
CEFLEX, the consortium of companies, associations and organisations collaborating to enhance the performance of flexible packaging in the circular economy in Europe, by designing and advancing better system solutions, has reached a new landmark with stakeholder numbers over 100.