Nautilus Solar Energy and ISM Solar Development open solar farm on remediated landfill – Waste Today Magazine
While recyclers’ main focus is on the movement of materials, legislation and regulations in the U.S. and abroad continue to affect commodity markets.
During the 2021 Paper & Plastics Recycling Conference Webinar Series, Adina Renee Adler, vice president of advocacy at the Washington-based Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI), outlined how international regulations as well as federal and state regulations are affecting commodity markets for paper and plastic scrap.
Regarding the international trade of paper and plastic scrap, Adler said ISRI has been looking closely at a few key markets.
Although China has closed its doors to recovered fiber imports, she said the association continues to keep close tabs on what is happening with trade regulations in China.
“China, as you know, over the last few years is in this drive toward some self-sufficiency in creating a domestic, insular circular economy, trying to improve their ability to secure raw materials for their manufacturers,” she said. “But, of course, as we all know so well how strong that economy is and how much construction continues … that [China] can’t fulfill all of that demand from domestic sources … so they do continue to need to import recycled commodities.”
Adler noted that China is implementing quality standards for importing scrap metals, adding that the association will be tracking whether anything similar plays out for paper scrap in the future.
Malaysia, another key market for paper and plastic scrap, has implemented scrap import requirements that are similar to those in China. Adler said Malaysia has been engaging in stakeholder outreach as it develops scrap import guidelines specifically for metal and paper scrap.
On the paper side, she said Malaysia is planning to continue to follow the European BS EN 643:2014 standard for recovered paper. Adler said Malaysia is expected to recognize that different grades of paper scrap will need to follow different standards based on quality. She added that the nation plans to have a zero-tolerance level for what it calls “scheduled waste,” including plastics and other waste.
Indonesia also is actively updating its regulations for paper scrap imports. In the summer, that nation confirmed it would accept up to 2 percent prohibitives in paper scrap imports. Adler said Indonesia is supposed to provide guidance on that update to preshipment inspection agencies, though as of late October that had not yet happened.
Within the United States, much activity is happening at the state level, and much of the regulation pertains to extended producer responsibility (EPR) and recycled-content mandates.
“States have been very active on a range of policy issues,” Adler said. “You can see a number of states have introduced or are considering EPR legislation, which is being driven by a need to increase recycling, finding ways to help pay for it as municipalities are being impacted by changes in the marketplace.”
Maine and Oregon …….