Garbage disposal only becomes a problem, they say, when people don’t know how to properly dispose of their garbage. However, the crisis in recycling is affecting not only the US, but it has reached the land down under. With India implementing a ban on importation of garbage into their country, Australia is now suffering from a recycling problem. They have too much trash in their country and they don’t have an idea of how to deal with it.
The recycling problem stems from the complete ban that India imposed on waste imports this month. The Australian Council of Recycling has warned that the recycling program of Australia is greatly under threat. The closure of the Asian markets on waste importations has caused the country to be left with trash they do not know how to dispose of. Last year, India imported more than 13% of the total trash in Australia.
“We are back to where we once were. China started this crisis, but it only got worse when the other Asian markets have closed the doors and left us with fewer alternatives,” said Peter Shmigel. The chief of the Australian Council told the Sydney Morning Herald during an interview.
Many countries around the world are suffering from unwanted waste build-up. After China stopped their importation of recyclable garbage last year, countries are now dealing with an industry overload. Recent statistical studies show that the exports of Australia to China have been down by as much as 41% in the last financial year. However, Australia’s exportable waste has increased by 5% since then.
Other Asian countries have made themselves available for Australia’s rubbish including Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia and yet there are still piles of hazardous recyclable materials that the government of Australia does not know how to get rid of. They are looking at other rubbish collectors to save them from their own trash. Alternative overseas markets are being studied.
Sadly, both Thailand and Malaysia have expressed their desire to also put a ban on plastic imports by 2021.
“If Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam implement a waste ban like that of China, Australia would have to look for an alternative market for the rubbish. The country has 1.29 million tons of waste each year and the amount only grows bigger each year,” according to the analysis of waste exports in Australia. The group was commissioned by the Department of Environment and Energy.
“Targets and actions have been discussed and the goal is to make milestones truly achievable. We need a national action plan to put an end to this recycling crisis,” said Melissa Price, Minister for Environment for Australia Federal Government.