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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

 

Momentum builds for No Deforestation palm oil

Blog entry by Suzanne Kroger | 25 November, 2014 4 comments

By now you know the problem: a rapidly expanding palm oil industry, eating up forests, draining carbon-rich peatlands, and sparking conflict with local people and workers. But if you had to guess at what is turning out to be a key...

A global day of oceanic solidarity

Blog entry by Nina Thuellen | 22 November, 2014 3 comments

Exactly one year ago I had the privilege to attended the congress of European fishers using fishing gear with a low impact on marine life. At this congress, their brand new association L.I.F.E. (Low Impact Fishers of Europe) was...

Puma winning the race for toxic-free sportswear

Blog entry by Manfred Santen | 21 November, 2014 1 comment

Out of the four big sportswear brands urged to take the challenge and Detox, we can now name the leader of the pack: Puma. Today, the German sportswear brand has announced it really is “forever faster” with an updated commitment...

For oil companies, our rights are just another obstacle

Blog entry by Martin L., Joris T., Leon V. and Faiza O. | 21 November, 2014 3 comments

Once upon a time fossil fuel exploration took place far away, out of sight and out of mind. But as oil and gas giants become ever more desperate for new reserves they’re prepared to drill in places that were previously unthinkable.

The Arctic Sunrise, her journey continues

Blog entry by Arin de Hoog | 19 November, 2014 2 comments

Last Saturday, the ecologically pristine area around the Canary Islands was the watery stage of the next chapter in the story of the Arctic Sunrise. Last year, she carried Greenpeace activists across icy waters North of Russia, where...

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