Facility Management

HOW FMS CAN HELP CLEAN UP THE RECYCLING MESS

For decades, getting rid of Australia’s unwanted waste was a matter of ‘out of sight, out of mind’. In 2018, Australia exported close to 4.5 million tonnes of garbage overseas, much of it to China. And it wasn’t only Australia. The rest of the developed world was also exporting its plastics, paper and other waste to China.

This trade was a useful piece of business for all concerned. Developed nations had a dumping ground for excess waste and China paid reasonable prices for materials its inventive local manufacturers could turn into cheap goods for domestic consumers.

That changed when China implemented its National Sword policy at the start of 2018, plunging nations like Australia into a ‘recycling crisis’. The aim of National Sword, which evolved from the Chinese Government’s 2013 Operation Green Fence Policy, has been to tighten controls on waste imports and reduce China’s rubbish problems.

China restricted the importation of 24 streams of recyclable material and capped

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