eWASA News – 19 Nov 21


European Commission acknowledges the EU\’s plastic waste trade crisis with proposal

Today the European Commission tabled its long-anticipated proposal of the EU Waste Shipment Regulation, with an aim \”to ensure that the EU does not export its waste challenges to third countries\”. However, despite some interesting provisions, current suggestions fail to adequately address the scale and impact of waste trade.

The proposal follows a call for a plastic waste export ban from 36 MEPs and 89 organisations signatory to the BFFP EU Plastic Waste Trade Manifesto, and Commissioner Sinkevicius\’ citing the EU’s desire to enact ambitious rules on waste during a Rethink Plastic alliance waste trade event held in September. Long criticised for its practice regarding waste shipments, notably plastic, the EU has been urged many times to take ambitious action to end this crisis causing significant health, environmental and social harm for receiving countries.

\”The Basel Convention calls for all countries to be self-sufficient in waste management,\” said Jim Puckett, Executive Director of the Basel Action Network. \”Certainly, the EU, which is very well resourced compared to the rest of the world, should be among the first group of nations to achieve full waste self-sufficiency and stop playing the global waste trade shell game. They must adopt a no-exceptions ban on waste trade period.\” Read more on the BAN website and the RethinkPlasticsAlliance news release.

Experts Say We Need More Than Recycling to Solve the eWaste Crisis

Digital Trends reports \”53.6 million metric tons. That’s over 118 billion pounds. No, I’m not talking about the weight of the Great Wall China (which is 116 billion pounds, in case you’re wondering). I’m talking about the weighty problem of e-waste. The United Nations claims the world produced 118,167,773,000 pounds of e-waste — or 53.6 million metric tons — in 2019 alone.

The UN says only 17.4% of e-waste was collected and recycled in 2019. And the U.S. is one of the worst countries in the world when it comes to recycling.

Recycling is a positive step, one that consumers woefully underuse. But to address the increasing issues of e-waste and how electronics impact the environment, we need more sustainable device designs, more energy-efficient technology, and critically, the right to repair. Consumers play a role, but manufacturers do, too. And in this case, they need to lead the charge. Read the full article here.

Metals from Aluminum to Zinc Are All Flashing Tight Supply Right Now

For the first time in more than a decade, six of the world’s most vital industrial metals are flashing a rare synchronized warning over tight supply, as logistical turmoil and strong demand spark anxiety among buyers.

From aluminium to zinc, spot prices for base metals on the London Metal Exchange are all soaring above futures — a condition known as backwardation — for the first time since 2007. Buyers are paying a premium for access to metal against a backdrop of plunging exchange inventories, supply-chain delays, production hiccups and surging demand for industrial commodities in everything from construction to consumer electronics.

In copper and tin, the scale of the backwardations has reached record highs in recent months, exacerbating the sense of panic among industrial users who have been dealing with escalating supply turmoil since the pandemic began. The Daily Maverick has more.

Fix the economy to fix climate change: the role of the circular economy | #COP26
We cannot fix climate change unless we transform the whole economy. The circular economy is a key part of the solution to tackle climate change and to fulfil the objectives set out in the Paris Agreement.

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