Export-Import case study
Australia is not a big player in the waste trade, but a good percentage
of its exports are shipped all the way to Europe. In 2000 Australia reported
the export of 16 689 tonnes of waste (all classified as hazardous) to
New Zealand, Belgium, Great Britain, France and Austria. More than half
the waste consisted of used lead acid batteries, which were moved across
the Tasman Sea to New Zealand. Most of the rest of the waste (described
as lead dross) was exported to Belgium. During that same period Australia
imported 1600 tonnes of waste from New Zealand, Norway, French Antarctic
and South Africa. This included mostly copper and lead compounds from
New Zealand, selenium from Norway and household waste from the French
In 2000 Germany reported sending 317 528 tonnes of waste to 14 countries.
All countries appeared to receive a broad combination of hazardous waste
apart from China, which received nearly 50 tonnes of household waste.
During 2000 Germany was amongst the top importers, bringing in over 1
million tonnes of waste from 38 countries. Most of the waste came from
the Netherlands, Italy Luxemburg and Belgium and contained a combination
of waste streams.