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China's Proposed Revisions to Solid Waste Management Law References "Solid Waste" Imports

ISRI learned last week that China's Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) is seeking public comments on draft revisions to the Law of the People's Republic of China on the Prevention and Control of Environmental Pollution by Solid Wastes.

The majority of the document is unrelated to scrap trade, but you can read our analysis of the provisions that do relate to scrap trade.

The key takeaways are:

  • This is the central government's overarching law governing all solid waste management. It is not exclusive to "solid waste" trade though it does have some jurisdiction, such as the scrap import regulations implemented by MEE;
  • Article 29 translates as "The State forbids the import of solid wastes."  The Chinese word for "solid waste" is the word that is used to describe trash and/or scrap. ISRI has been working for over a year to advocate the use of alternative words that can more explicitly distinguish between trash and scrap, and its use here creates confusion.
  • There are also a couple of references to restrictions on equipment imports, but they are intended only to ensure that modern equipment is used in recycling and solid waste processing.

The MEE has opened the proposals for public comment due on August 18. ISRI will submit comments on behalf of the industry and we welcome input from members. Please contact Adina Renee Adler with comments and questions.

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