Doing so would not only requires stricter government enforcement, but investment in foreign technology and expertise to develop urban recycling facilities and modern treatment and reprocessing practices.
According to author Alexander Chipman Koty, recycling in China is a market-driven economic activity galvanized by securing cheap commodities for manufacturers. He claims that China’s recycling industry employs more people than any other industry except for agriculture. Most of the recycling is done in an informal market that on the one hand fills the gap left by public services, on the other hand a considerable amount of recyclables still end up in the dump.
The same goes for the reprocessing sector which according to Koty is dominated by small family-run enterprises that are highly specialised, but are a main factor of environmental pollution due to missing regulations.
Koty says that the Chinese government has been making efforts to gradually clamp down on the industry’s biggest polluters and to standardize the recycling process. With Operation Green Fence, China no longer accepts highly contaminated waste. Minimum output regulations and the suspension of licenses for importers of dirty recyclables have also caused the closing of some small workshops reliant on inefficient and polluting dirty recycling.
Read the whole story at China Briefing.