Basel Convention agrees to restrict global plastic waste trade | Current Affairs, Current Affairs 2019

Basel Convention agrees to restrict global plastic waste trade

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Almost all the countries around 180 governments except United States, after 12 days of negotiations under the patronage of United Nations(UN) agreed on a deal to control the movement of plastic waste between national borders. About 1400 representatives from almost every country in the world participated for 12 days of discussions at the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) meeting in Geneva, Switzerland.

Except the United States, the participating Nations agreed on a deal to regulate movement of hazardous material from one country to another in order to control the dangerous affects of plastic pollution around the world.The pact was approved at the end of the two week meeting of UN-backed conventions in Geneva, Switzerland. It was agreed to the deal which essentially updates (or amended) the 1989 Basel Convention on the Control Of Hazardous Waste to include plastic waste in a legally-binding framework, in a move to quickly reduce amount of plastic being washed into world’s oceans.
The agreement and signing of the framework of reducing plastic waste means that countries will have to monitor and track thousands of types of plastic waste outside their borders.

This Agreement is of great significance as some of the main causes of concern is that 8 million tonnes of plastic waste is being dumped or exported to developing Asian countries and is being followed by developed countries like the US and Canada with claims that it would be recycled in receiving country. But since, much of this contaminated mixed waste cannot be recycled it is instead dumped or burned, or lastly ends up in the ocean.

According to IPEN umbrella group ((The International POPs Elimination Network, a global network of NGOs which seeks to eliminate hazardous and toxic chemicals and persistent organic pollutants)this new amendment to Basel Convention would entitle the developing countries to refuse plastic waste dumping.

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