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Greenpeace boards ship carrying PCB toxic waste.

Toxic trade

Greenpeace has documented hundreds of cases where developed countries have traded or transferred toxic waste problems to developing countries.

Instead of receiving clean technologies, too often developing countries receive toxic waste, products and technologies.

Currently the main focus of our work on toxic trade is stopping the dumping of dirty ships in Asia for shipbreaking.

This type of trade is immoral and environmentally destructive to the receiving countries and their people. It also prevents developed countries from investing in real solutions to pollution, and developing future markets in more appropriate technologies or products.

The most blatant offence has been the export of toxic wastes from developed to developing countries. Greenpeace has sought a ban on this type of toxic trade and achieved it through an international treaty called the Basel Convention.

The convention came into force in 1992 but it was a weak treaty. In 1994, a unique coalition of developing countries, and some from eastern and western Europe along with Greenpeace, managed to pass by consensus what has come to be known as the Basel Ban.

This became law in 1998 and banned waste transfer to developing countries. Greenpeace is now campaigning to:

· Prevent governments and companies circumventing the ban by practices such as ship breaking;

· Promote clean production;

· Halt the production and trade of toxic products such as the UN Environmental Programme list of the dirty dozen (the 12 most toxic persistent pollutants); and

· Stop toxic technologies such as incineration.

The latest updates

 

FSC Case Studies

Publication | April 15, 2014 at 12:00

To keep FSC certification as a credible tool to help protect forests, Greenpeace International is publishing a series of case studies exposing controversial operations that are posing the greatest risk to the FSC’s integrity. We will also be...

How long before the magnificent marine life of the Bering Sea canyons is given sanctuary?

Blog entry by Farah Obaidullah | April 14, 2014

I have just sat through four painstaking days of the North Pacific Fishery Management Council meeting in Anchorage, Alaska. It's an eight-day meeting but luckily for me - and my sanity - I only had to endure four. This government body...

Divert excessive weapon spending to achieve clean energy future

Blog entry by Jen Maman | April 14, 2014 1 comment

According to new figures released on Monday, last year a whopping US$1747 billion was spent on armies across the world. Modest decreases in spending in austerity hit Western Europe and reduced spending in the US, which is still the...

Protest At The Brandenburg Gate

Image | April 13, 2014 at 13:49

Greenpeace activists hold and display globe placards bearing messages in six different languages (Chinese, English, French, German, Japanese and Spanish) in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin. The messages read: "Clean Energy Now!” and...

Dear fossil fuel industry - it's over

Blog entry by Daniel Mittler and Kaisa Kosonen | April 13, 2014 4 comments

It's been a long week here in Berlin, with experts and government officials finalising urgently awaited conclusions from the United Nations climate change panel about the solutions to climate change . Now they’re done and the message...

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