Malaysia intends to return about 3,300 tons of plastic trash to U.S. and other developed countries, according to a government minister.
Malaysia rejects trash from developed countries
The Associated Press reported that Environment Minister Yeo Bee Yin said that Malaysia will be sending 60 containers of trash back to their countries of origin. These non-recyclable materials were found smuggled to non-registered processing facilities.
Malaysia is the latest Asian country to start refusing trash from foreign countries.
Malaysian officials said that at least 14 countries will get their waste back to them. The list includes U.S., U.K., Japan, Canada, China, France, Saudi Arabia, and Australia.
Yeo noted that the majority of citizens in developed countries are not aware that their waste is actually brought to developing countries. They are made to believe that they are being recycled.
Malaysia and other developing countries were became the targets for a lot of garbages in the world after China banned the import of plastic trash in 2018.
The environment minister said that US and other developed countries must review their plastic waste management and quit dumping them to developing countries.
She warned: “If you ship to Malaysia, we will return it back without mercy.”
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte was also reported saying he would ship 69 containers of trash back to Canada or would leave them in international waters in case the country refuse them. Philippine government officials said that items were illegally shipped to the country from Canada in 2013 to 2014.
World efforts to address waste problems
Many nations have vowed to address waste problem as the world grapples with what to do with its garbage.
Just recently, over 180 countries, excluding the U.S., pledged to adhere to control measures to curtail plastic pollution under the Basel Convention
Non-recyclable materials are normally dumped into landfills or burnt and thereby contaminating natural resources.