China's final contamination standard for recyclables remains 0.5 percent
NWRA says short-term challenges will give way to new opportunities
The Chinese government has announced that its standard for certain recyclables is 0.5 percent, unchanged from its proposal last year.
"NWRA has always supported China's efforts to improve its environment," said NWRA President and CEO, Darrell Smith. "However, we believe there are better ways to achieve those goals than to tighten restrictions on imported recyclables. We have said before that the .5 percent standard would be nearly impossible for our members to meet and it could cause some short-term disruptions in the industry. However, it could also present opportunities as our members continue to adjust. As an association, we will continue to work with our industry partners and the federal government reduce the burden these stringent rules have placed on the waste and recycling industry."
NWRA filed comments in December related to what was then a proposed standard. In those comments NWRA urged the Chinese government to adopt international standards. NWRA also expressed concern that the environment would be the biggest loser when recycling programs fail and manufacturers resort using resource intensive virgin resources.