SA teams up with Interpol to curb waste dumping

Business

SA teams up with Interpol to curb waste dumping

Big firms prowl for illicit disposal sites as more African states say no to the developed world’s rubbish

Pieter van der Merwe

European and North American companies have dumped waste in developing nations for years, often illegally. Now, with many pushing back, SA has no intention of becoming a replacement rubbish dump.

Since the 1980s, China has had an open-door policy for waste, taking in millions of tons for recycling every year. That is until 2018, when Beijing decided to restrict imports of paper, plastic, metals and e-waste, reportedly aiming for zero waste imports by 2020. So transnational companies found other places to dump  waste cheaply. 

But a string of south-east Asian countries announced recently that they plan to stop accepting the developed world’s rubbish. As more countries join in, regulating the waste industry will require increased cooperation between law-enforcement agencies and organisations...

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