Malaysia lets in US plastic waste after it passes new UN treaty test

Malaysia lets in US plastic waste after it passes new UN treaty test

Malaysia has allowed in a container of plastic waste from the United States after finding that it held only clean, recyclable material, and did not after all violate a brand-new United Nations treaty banning trade in contaminated plastics.

Plastic waste piled outside an illegal recycling factory in Jenjarom, Kuala Langat, Malaysia, October 14, 2018.
PHOTO: Reuters

Signatories to the Basel Convention, which came into force on Jan 1, may only trade plastic waste if it is clean, sorted and easy to recycle – unless the importing country has granted an exemption.

Malaysia became the leading destination for the world’s plastic trash after China banned imports in 2018, and has returned thousands of tonnes of plastic scrap since then.

Plastic waste piled outside an illegal recycling factory in Jenjarom, Kuala Langat, Malaysia, October 14, 2018.
PHOTO: Reuters

Its environment minister said on Tuesday (March 30) that the US shipment, which arrived on Saturday and had been thought to be hazardous, was found to be clean, homogenous polyethylene waste, as required under its import licence.

People clear trash by the sea at Tioman Island, Pahang, Malaysia, September 13, 2020, in this still image from video obtained via social media.
PHOTO: The Monkey Project via Reuters

“The Department of Environment confirms that the plastic waste is in compliance with the criteria of B3011 Basel Convention,” Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man said in a statement.

A woman clears trash by the sea at Tioman Island, Pahang, Malaysia, September 13, 2020, in this still image from video obtained via social media.
PHOTO: The Monkey Project via REUTERS

The United States, which produces more plastic waste per capita than any other country, is the only major nation not to have ratified the Basel Convention and is not bound by its rules. However, under the treaty, Malaysia cannot accept prohibited plastic waste from the United States.

Share this post

Comment (1)

  • Florencia Reply

    Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The text
    in your post seem to be running off the screen in Firefox.
    I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to do with browser compatibility but
    I thought I’d post to let you know. The style
    and design look great though! Hope you get the problem fixed soon. Cheers

    October 17, 2021 at 3:31 pm

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *