EU adopts stricter regulation on plastic waste exports

"The export of plastic waste will only be allowed under
very strict conditions," said Commisioner Sinkevičius .
23.12.2020 − 

The EU is tightening regulation on exports of plastic waste to non-OECD countries. New rules adopted by the European Commission on 22 December ban the export of plastic waste from the EU to non-OECD countries, except for clean plastic waste sent for recycling. Exporting plastic waste from the EU to OECD countries and imports in the EU will also be more strictly controlled, the Commission said in a statement issued on Tuesday. A Delegated Regulation (2020/2174) was published in the EU Official Journal. The amendments go into effect on 1 January 2021.

Commenting on the new regulations, EU Environment Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevičius said, "These new rules send a clear message that in the EU we are taking responsibility for the waste we generate. The export of plastic waste will only be allowed under very strict conditions. The export of unsorted plastic waste to non-OECD countries will be completely banned. This is an important milestone in fighting plastic pollution, transitioning shifting to a circular economy, and achieving the aims of the European Green Deal."

The new rules are designed to end the export of plastic waste to third countries that lack the capacity and standards to manage it sustainably. The new rules also implement the amendments to the Basel Convention adopted in May 2019, some of which were incorporated in the "OECD Decision" on transfrontier movement of waste in September of this year.

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