Waste shipped to Brazil meant for landfill

The Environment Agency has revealed waste shipped to Brazil was meant for landfill and was therefore against international rules.

The agency said this morning (23 September) that the containers were described as mixed plastics when they left the UK, as reported last month.

A team of environmental crime investigators from the agency have opened 14 of the 81 containers sent back by Brazilian customs last month.

They’ve found waste including nappies, wellington boots, torn and dirty textiles, cat food pouches and rotting cardboard.

It’s legal to export waste, like plastics, to some countries for recycling but against the law to export waste to be dumped.

Head of the agency’s national environment crime unit, Andrew Higham, said: “Waste in this state is clearly not suitable for recycling and should never have been exported.

“This is completely unacceptable and we will not allow this type of waste to be sent to developing countries.”

Three men have been arrested.

Luke Walsh

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