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Quick Facts About the Plastic Waste Trade Crisis

January 27, 2020 2 min read

In 2016 the documentary “Plastic China” shook the world when it exposed the toll plastic waste importing was having on the health of the environment and people. Since then, China has banned the imports of plastic waste and many ASEAN countries have followed, introducing a variety of crises in plastic waste management in the Global North.


But with the crises come opportunities and the possibility that these countries will begin to look at reducing plastic consumption. Governments are now tasked to find new ways to manage their own waste, rather than dump them into the Global South.


Here are three more facts about the plastic waste trade crisis you should know, in no particular order.


  • The Thai government has announced a ban on foreign plastic waste imports by 2021. Effective September 2019, India enacted a complete ban on imported plastic. The Malaysian government announced a plan to completely ban plastic imports by 2021. 


  • 187 countries signed a treaty in May 2019, to restrict shipments of hard-to-recycle plastic waste to poorer countries. The United States did not sign.


  • Australia has released a timeline on waste export bans. Its environment ministers have agreed to a ban on the export of waste glass, paper in tires, which is slated to be fully enacted by June 30, 2022.


Meanwhile, everyone’s being encouraged on a community and an individual level to avoid single-use plastics and unnecessary plastic containers. You can help, too by reducing your own plastic waste and educating yourself about the plastic waste crisis.




    To help you get started on your sustainable lifestyle, here are some Eco-friendly products that can get you going :






    Remember, going green is not a trend that will go away in a few years. It’s a sustainable way of life that’s designed for the long term. It requires hard work, patience, and perseverance. But the rewards you get from living it will be more than worth it.