Chinese group voices concerns with draft recycling policy

By Nina Ying Sun
Assistant Managing Editor

Published: September 25, 2012 6:00 am ET

Related to this story

Topics Public Policy Sustainability Recycling
Companies & Associations

BEIJING (Sept. 25, 4:35 p.m. ET) — China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection is drafting another policy that could have direct impact on the global market for recycled plastics.

The China Plastics Processing Industry Association’s Plastics Recycling Committee — a group that represents recyclers in China — has sent an official response to the ministry summarizing two main points in opposition to the new draft regulations on imported plastic waste.

The key point in the official letter, which PRC-CPPIA shared with Plastics News, said a regulation that lists import of unwashed post-consumer plastics as an illegal activity “lacks rationality.”

From a technical point of view, post-consumer plastics need to go through sorting, washing and grinding, which should take place in the same stage. Imported waste plastics that are prewashed frequently have a mix of materials, which affects the quality.

The letter added that some types of waste plastics are difficult to dry after washing and will retain 25 percent of water, inflating the import cost. Water could also cause quality issues for engineering plastics such as nylon.

“If [the government] bans the import of unwashed plastics, it in fact will hurt the operation of many waste importers and recyclers with the exception of PET bottle flakes” the letter said.

Second, the letter argues that it is unreasonable to require recyclers to granulate materials before they are sold. The purpose of granulation is to facilitate uniform feeding of the materials. If regrind meets the feeding standards, it is wasteful to go through an additional procedure of granulation.

For example, the group said, clean PET flake is used to make polyester fiber, without having to be granulated first.

“We believe the current regulatory and control measures of waste plastics import are very strict. The double-check mechanism of offshore inspection and arrival inspection at the customs effectively prevents the import of banned materials and pollution. Most importers and recyclers are law-abiding operations. [If the government] elevates the control measures simply because of individual cases of management oversight or malicious behavior, [it] could limit the normal operation of law-abiding businesses and will not be conducive to the healthy growth of the industry,” the statement concluded.

The ministry’s draft policy stipulates the criteria for receiving import licenses and details on facility inspections.

Companies that are eligible to apply for the import and processing of waste plastics include:

• Polyester fiber manufacturers.

• Processors of plastics products and other manufacturers that use waste plastics in the raw materials.

• Companies that make granulated materials from waste plastics.

• Companies that make recycled PET flake with existing annual capacity of no less than 30,000 metric tons can apply to import recycled PET grinds and industrial scrap.

Ineligible companies include firms that make ultrathin shipping bags, food-contact products, medical products and construction supplies (with the exception of decorative products).


Comments

Chinese group voices concerns with draft recycling policy

By Nina Ying Sun
Assistant Managing Editor

Published: September 25, 2012 6:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

California may require more recycled content in bottles

April 24, 2015 11:16 am ET

California lawmakers are considering a pair of bills that would bump up the required recycled content in plastic bottles for beverage companies to...    More

Image

Study suggests infants at lower risk from BPA exposure than expected

April 23, 2015 4:58 pm ET

A new study shows that newborn babies may have less risk from bisphenol A exposure than originally thought.    More

Image

Michigan OSHA fines injection molder

April 23, 2015 4:09 pm ET

Michigan-based injection molder Grand Rapids Plastics Inc. faces $558,000 of fines following inspections from state regulators investigating the June ...    More

Image

Clopay Plastics suing Berry over breathable film trade secrets

April 23, 2015 2:08 pm ET

Clopay Plastics Products Co. is alleging Berry Plastics Group Inc. stole trade secrets involving its breathable film technology used for baby and...    More

Image

Jeco adds Ferry rotational molder to handle increase in business

April 23, 2015 12:27 pm ET

Jeco Plastics Products LLC is ramping up for more work, adding a new Ferry 2600 rotational molder that will provide more capabilities.    More

Market Reports

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Injection Molding Market Analysis & Processor Rankings

Plastics News BUNDLED package contains our in-depth Market Analysis of the Injection Molding segment. You will gain keen insight on current trends and our economic outlook.

As a BONUS this includes PN's updated 2014 database of North American Injection Molders RANKED by sales volume. Sort, merge, mail & prospect by end market, materials processed, region, # of plants and more.

Learn more

Plastics Caps & Closures Market Report

The annual recap of top trends and future outlook for the plastics caps & closures market features interviews with industry thought leaders and Bill Wood’s economic forecast of trends in growing end markets. You will also gain insight on trends in caps design, materials, machinery, molds & tooling and reviews of mergers & acquisitions.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 15, 2015 - September 17, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events