Portugal suspends foreign trash imports to cope with own increased waste

LISBON: Portugal, which usually attracts huge mounds of rubbish from other European states because of its low waste management fees, has suspended imports of trash until the end of 2020 to protect domestic landfill capacity, the government said on Saturday (May 16).

"This decision is intended to ensure we have sufficient national capacity in waste processing facilities," the government said in a statement.

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The country has already blocked 246,000 tonnes of trash from entering since the start of the year, the statement said, and no new imports will be accepted.

The country charges 11 euros to process a tonne of trash, considerably below the European average of 80 euros.

The coronavirus pandemic has seen an increase in plastic waste in many countries – ranging from medical workers' protective gear such as aprons and gloves to takeaway boxes, as people under lockdown order food to their homes.

The government is due to revise its laws on landfills and waste management this summer, as its waste reduction and recycling targets become harder to attain due to the pandemic.

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Portugal has already limited its recycling efforts for the duRead More – Source