Tariffs and A Trade War Threaten U.S. Paper Recycling
China’s latest round of retaliatory tariffs against the U.S. includes something called “recovered fiber materials,” basically, recycled paper, the newspapers and cardboard that we put in the recycle bin. Recycling trucks collect paper, bundle it up at local centers, and sell it as bales, mostly to China, to be remanufactured into new products. It’s the cycle of recycling. And now there’s a potential tariff on those exports.
The tariff announcement hits an already weakened recycling industry after China announced it would no longer import most plastics and other recycled goods from the United States earlier this year.
China is the top importer of U.S. recycled paper. China imported 2.73 million tons of U.S. cardboard during the first half of 2018 and 1.4 million tons of all other U.S.-sourced recovered fiber. And without China as the buyer of American recycled paper, the future of U.S. recycling is in doubt.
Date: September 4, 2018
Image: Google Images
Coordinator: EnvGuide Team (Mengxi Tan, Yicheng Huang, Yuying Chen)