The British Plastics Federation (BPF), which represents the supply chain of the UK plastics industry, has published a position paper supporting the aims of the Norway proposal on plastic waste exports.
This proposal has been tabled under the United Nations’ Basel Convention to ensure plastic waste exports are treated in an environmentally-friendly manner once they reach their final destination.
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The BPF believes that low-grade, mixed plastic waste exports should be put under tighter controls, regardless of their destination.
It said that this will create a “strong driver” for an improvement in the quality of sorted plastics being produced in the primary sorting Material Recovery Facilities across the UK.
The Federation stated that the dependence on the export of plastic waste has “left the UK exposed to criticism” that it is adding to overseas sources of marine plastic pollution.
BPF director general Philip Law said: “Improving the quality of plastic waste exports has the highly important potential to boost the recycling industry and can contribute toward reducing the over-reliance on plastic waste exports and in developing a domestic recycling culture. The BPF has been vocal in the past about the need for the UK to reduce its reliance on plastic waste exports and, at the same time, drive investment to expand national recycling capacity.”