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 Sustainability, Public Policy, Recycling

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

World Plastics Council takes on sustainbility for its initial priorities

November 25, 2014 9:51 am ET

The recently formed World Plastics Council (WPC) has set marine debris and post-consumer recycling and energy recover as its initial top priorities.    More

Image

AMA Plastics adds presses, changes management structure

November 24, 2014 3:57 pm ET

AMA Plastics Inc. has strengthened its management structure, received recognition for entrepreneurship, achieved quality improvements and added three ...    More

Image

Indian plastics group targets waste

November 24, 2014 12:46 pm ET

An Indian plastics environmental group and the country's largest brand for packaged water, Bisleri International Pvt. Ltd., have launched a trial...    More

Image

Can plastics return to the driver's seat?

November 24, 2014 6:00 am ET

When the June 1989 issue of Popular Science introduced three cutting-edge automotive technologies, including the latest Corvette and a powerful...    More

Image

Wilbur Ross steps down from IAC board

November 24, 2014 11:38 am ET

Financier Wilbur Ross Jr. has resigned from the boards of International Automotive Components Group SA and its subsidiaries due to new regulatory rest...    More

Market Reports

Plastics in Brazil - State of the Industry Report

This in-depth report examines the Brazilian plastics industry from a historical and geographical context. Our analysts provide insight on economic trends and forecasts, growing manufacturing sectors that utilize plastics, private investment opportunities, market environment challenges, and innovations in R&D.

Data tables and charts on producer prices, trade, plastics production and end market indicators is also included.

Learn more

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 Molders Market Report & Ranking 2014

This special package contains our 132-page 2014 Market Report on the Injection Molding segment and our exclusive 2014 RANKINGS database of 500+ Injection Molders for a discounted package price.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

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

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

October 27, 2015 - October 29, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - New York - 2015

More Events