An EU Ban on the Export of Non-recyclable Plastic Waste to Poor Nations (Non-OECD Countries)

Main Article Content

Pedithep Youyuenyong

Abstract

Plastics are one of the most affordable, versatile and durable materials in the world.
Majority of plastic waste is treated by disposal in landfill, incineration, and recycling.
However, million tons of abandoned plastic waste is still casted away through rivers and seas.
By this, many developed countries in the European Union export their recyclable and
non-recyclable waste overseas to minimise environmental impact of plastics and
micro-plastics use, waste and pollution. Large quantity of plastic waste from many European
countries was sent to least developed countries and developing countries. However,
poor management of plastic waste in developing countries causes serious negative impact
on environment and climate change, such as the problem on depositing of plastic and
micro-plastics on land and in rivers and oceans in such poor countries. In December 2020,
the EU announced a new policy to ban export of unsorted plastic waste to non-OECD
member countries including all non-recyclable plastic waste, starting in January 2021.
These new EU rules will only allow recyclable plastic waste sent for recycling to be
exported to non-OECD countries. The Polluter Pays Principle (PPP) is one of the main
principles that influence the shaping of these new EU rules at the European level.
The implementation of the concept of PPP responsibility is a strong instrument to reduce
plastic usage and encourage better sorting and recycling across the EU and non-OECD
countries.

Downloads

Download data is not yet available.

Article Details

Section
Academic Articles

References

Alessio D’Amato, Susanna Paleari, Maija Pohjakallio, Ive Vanderreydt, and Roberto Zoboli , Eionet Report - ETC/WMGE 2019/5 Plastics waste trade and the environment (Copenhagen: European Environment Agency, 2019), 3.
“A European Green Deal Striving to be the first climate-neutral continent,” European Commission, accessed January 8, 2021, https://ec.europa.eu/info/strategy/priorities-2019-2024/european-green-deal_en
Benedetta Cotta, “What goes around, comes around? Access and allocation problems in Global North–South waste trade,” International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics no. 20 (May 2020): 255–269.
BIO Intelligence Service, European Commission DG ENV. In association with. Plastic Waste in the Environment (Paris: BIO Intelligence Service, 2011), 19.
“Delegated Regulation to control transboundary plastic waste shipments published in Official Journal,” Thomson Reuters, Legal UK & Ireland, accessed January 8, 2021, https://uk.practicallaw.thomsonreuters.com/w-028-9565?transitionType=Default&contextData=(sc.Default)&firstPage=true
“EU Bans Exporting Unsorted Plastic Waste to Poorer Countries,” EcoWatch, accessed January 7, 2021, https://www.ecowatch.com/eu-bans-plastic-waste-exports-2649639389.html
“EU bans plastic waste exports to poor nations,” Deutsche Welle, accessed January 8, 2021, https://www.dw.com/en/eu-bans-plastic-waste-exports-to-poor-nations/a-56033900
“EU Circular Economy Action Plan,” European Commission, accessed January 8, 2021, https://ec.europa.eu/environment/circular-economy/index_en.htm
“EU rules on transboundary waste shipments – update concerning plastic wastes,” European Commission, accessed January 1, 2021, https://ec.europa.eu/info/law/better-regulation/have-your-say/initiatives/12256-EU-rules-on-transboundary-waste-shipments-update-concerning-plastic-wastes
European Commission, A European Strategy for Plastics in A Circular Economy (Brussels: European Commission, 2018), 21.
European Commission Directorate-General for Environment, Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Regulation (EC) 1013/2006 on shipments of waste (Brussels: European Commission, 2006), 11.
European Court of Auditors, EU action to tackle the issue of plastic waste (Luxembourg: European Court of Auditors, 2020), 57-59.
“Fourteenth Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Basel Convention,” Secretariat of the Basel Convention, accessed January 1, 2021, http://www.basel.int/TheConvention/ConferenceoftheParties/Meetings/COP14/tabid/7520/Default.aspx
Joan Marc Simon, Ferran Rosa, Cecilia Allen, Monica Wilson and Doun Moon, Changing trends in plastic waste trade Plastic Waste shipments report (Brussels: Zero Waste Europe, 2018), 25.
Keshav Parajuly & Colin Fitzpatrick, “Understanding the Impacts of Transboundary Waste Shipment Policies: The Case of Plastic and Electronic Waste,” Sustainability 6, no. 12 (March 2020): 2412.
Ieva Rucevska et al., Waste Crime - Waste Risks: Gaps in Meeting the Global Waste Challenge (Nairobi: UN Environment Programme, 2015), 23.
Pierre Condamine and Tim Grabiel, Waste Shipment Regulation revision How to fix Europe's plastic waste trade issues (Brussels: Rethink Plastic alliance, 2021), 1-3.
“Plastic waste shipments: new EU rules on importing and exporting plastic waste,” European Commission, accessed January 1, 2021, https://ec.europa.eu/environment/news/plastic-waste-shipments-new-eu-rules-importing-and-exporting-plastic-waste-2020-12-22_en
Stefan Sipka, From strategy to practice: Tough issues ahead for plastics (Brussels: European Policy Centre, 2018), 1-4.
“Studies on waste,” European Commission, accessed January 9, 2021, https://ec.europa.eu/environment/waste/studies/index.htm
“The plastic waste trade in the circular economy,” European Environment Agency, accessed January 6, 2021, file:///C:/Users/User/Downloads/Briefing-the-plastic-waste-trade-in-circular%20(2).pdf
“Waste shipments,” European Commission, accessed January 1, 2021, https://ec.europa.eu/environment/waste/shipments/
“Waste types and controls—plastics Practice notes,” LexisNexis, accessed January 3, 2021, https://www.lexisnexis.co.uk/legal/guidance/waste-types-controls-plastics
Zhe Liu, Michelle Adams, and Tony Robert Walker, “Are exports of recyclables from developed to developing countries waste pollution transfer or part of the global circular economy?,” Resources Conservation and Recycling 136, no. 2 (September 2018): 22-23.