Rubbish piles up in Australia as China bans waste imports

Firefighters attending to a blaze at a waste recycling centre in Melbourne yesterday. Australia has long relied on China as the chief importer of its recyclable materials, including paper, plastics and metals.
Firefighters attending to a blaze at a waste recycling centre in Melbourne yesterday. Australia has long relied on China as the chief importer of its recyclable materials, including paper, plastics and metals.PHOTO: EPA-EFE

Aussie ministers set to discuss crisis even as some see a chance to expand recycling sector

China's ban on waste imports has left Australia with mounting piles of rubbish but raised hopes of boosting the local recycling sector and creating a "circular economy".

Australia is one of the world's biggest producers of waste and has long relied on China as the chief importer of its recyclable materials, including paper, plastics and metals.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 14, 2018, with the headline 'Rubbish piles up in Australia as China bans waste imports'. Print Edition | Subscribe