Malaysia is another country in Asia to reject plastic waste from the west. As a result of China’s decision to stop accepting plastic waste from the United States and others, 7 Million tons per year have been interrupted. In the midst of confusion and market failure, waste was illegally shipped to Malaysia. The Philippines and other countries in the region have experienced similar circumstances. Malaysia took a hard stance by sending 3,000 tons back to Canada, where it originated.
Alarms are sounding as more and more recycling piles up around the world. Cities around the world are reverting to old habits like burning or burying plastic which causes pollution or doesn’t break down for 450-1,000 years. This is not sustainable.
According to Bruce Lieberman, a science and environment contributor for Yale’s Climate Connection, Waste to Energy has the ability to play an important role in solving our trash problem while also reducing carbon and methane emissions. In addition, it can lessen our dependence on Coal and Natural gas.
Waste to Energy has the ability to have tremendous positive benefits for the planet. While Waste to Energy provides certain relief for our waste crisis overall, it in itself is not the ultimate solution for our recycling problem. The world needs to change its relationship with plastics, fast. Many potential solutions have been offered but one thing is certain. Less plastic needs to be produced to begin with. We have too much plastic to know what to do with, and it is piling up in extreme numbers.
Written By Justin Stanphill