The waste recycling landscape is changing rapidly in China. Imports of waste have been banned, but with growing amounts of domestic waste, the need to recycle is increasing. Consequently, more pre-treatment of waste is necessary for efficient sorting and recycling.
At the end of 2018, China had roughly 400 waste incineration plants. The number of facilities is estimated to increase to around 600 by the end of 2020. Most of the plants process metal, MSW and industrial waste.
The waste import ban will force China’s recycling companies to accelerate their transformation. In practice, this will mean an increased number of greenfield waste treatment plants and the upgrading of existing processes. The level of sorting technology will improve and the utilization rate of waste will increase. The industry is expected to shift from small and scattered activities to concentrated, large-scale operations.
Guangdong, Zhejiang and Jiangsu provinces have been the forerunners in recycling, and most of the recycling plants have located there. Now developed regions like Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou and Chongqing are becoming more active, too. The breadth and speed of implementation depends largely on local government policies and the way they promote and enforce waste sorting.
Metso has been supplying equipment and services to Chinese waste recycling plants for over 10 years – first via distributors and later complemented with its own team and agents. The distributor network has been enlarged and new resources to serve customers have been recruited.
In China, Metso is a well-known brand among recyclers processing municipal solid waste (MSW) for the needs of waste-to-energy and cement plants. Altogether, there are over 80 Metso recycling units in the country, and the installed base is growing rapidly. The premium solutions are credited with delivering high throughput, excellent grain size, long lifetime and high availability.