The European Commission issued a press release on July 11 announcing drastic measures against illegal waste shipments.
The Commission has proposed more restrictive legislation on national inspections of waste shipments to ensure that all Member States have similar levels of control. According to the statement, about 25% of waste shipments from the EU to developing countries in Africa and Asia violate international transport regulations. When waste reaches its intended destination, it is often disposed of or mismanaged, causing serious adverse effects on human health and the environment.
The legislative initiative proposes regular inspections by Member States, based on cooperation between authorities and better training of inspectors performing these controls. This will help authorities focus on routes, duration of voyages and ships frequently involved in illegal shipping. Also, the competent bodies will have to focus their attention on collection and storage points, the controls performed from an early stage being able to prevent disasters. The planning of inspections will also contribute to increasing the capacity of the authorities to carry out efficient inspections.
These efficient inspections can also translate into direct savings and economic benefits for Member States and industry, avoiding the loss of valuable raw materials contained in waste (eg precious metals, cobalt and indium in electronic waste). This will lead to the optimization of waste treatment processes, to a better sorting, materializing everything in an easy access to quality raw materials.
More details are available here: