Chinese customs capture 72 suspected waste smugglersChristian Fernsby ▼ | December 22, 2019
Chinese customs have seized 72 people on suspicion of smuggling 79,100 tonnes of waste including plastic waste and slags during a special customs crackdown, according to the General Administration of Customs (GAC).
Crime and ecology in China Plastic waste
Topics: Chinese customs waste
This year, the country has launched three rounds of crackdowns on trash smuggling, investigating 354 cases of smuggling foreign trash and seizing 763,200 tonnes of illegal waste imports, down 21 percent and 48.64 percent respectively.
Chinese customs will enhance cooperation with international law enforcement agencies, and urged criminals to voluntarily surrender, said the official.
China began importing solid waste as a source of raw materials in the 1980s and for years has been the world's largest importer, despite its weak capacity in garbage disposal. Some companies have profited by illegally bringing foreign waste into the country, posing a threat to the environment and public health.
As part of its anti-pollution efforts, the government decided to phase out and halt such imports by the end of 2019. ■