All activities

Global agreements for a healthy planet: 9 MEAs work together to address illegal traffic
Representatives from the Barcelona Convention, CITES, Climate Change Convention, Convention on Biological Diversity, Minamata Convention, Montreal Protocol, and the Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions, join the Basel Convention’s Implementation and Compliance Committee online to discuss ways to better prevent and combat illegal traffic.

Global agreements for a healthy planet: 9 MEAs work together to address illegal traffic

Global agreements for a healthy planet: 9 MEAs work together to address illegal traffic
 
Plastic Waste: Your photo could make a difference
Back to school, back to university, back to the office? Snap the plastic waste you encounter and you could win the Plastic Waste Partnership’s photo contest, deadline 30 September.

Plastic Waste: Your photo could make a difference

Plastic Waste: Your photo could make a difference
 
Press Release: Basel Convention’s Open-ended Working Group meeting (online segment) concludes successfully
More than 600 experts from more than 100 countries participate at online segment of OEWG-12.

Press Release: Basel Convention’s Open-ended Working Group meeting (online segment) concludes successfully

Press Release: Basel Convention’s Open-ended Working Group meeting (online segment) concludes successfully

Geneva, 3 September 2020 - With the quantity of hazardous waste entering the environment very likely to be increasing due to the worldwide COVID19 pandemic, and an estimated 1000 million tonnes of plastic waste entering landfills or the environment by 2050, more than 600 participants from more than 120 countries came together online this week to discuss ways to minimise, and soundly manage, hazardous and other waste covered by the UN Basel Convention across the world.

The meeting, of a subsidiary body to the UN Basel Convention known as the Open-ended Working Group, was convened by the Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam, and Stockholm Conventions (BRS Secretariat) and took place online, with a follow-up face-to-face segment of the meeting also planned back-to-back with the next UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-5) meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, in March 2021*.

The Basel Convention, which has almost universal coverage with 188 Parties, is the most comprehensive legally-binding multilateral environment agreement governing transboundary movements of hazardous and other waste. Waste streams included in this legal framework include electronic waste, plastic waste, and medical waste.

Key outcomes from the meeting included updates and inputs from Parties and Observers into a range of technical, strategic and legal work including the various products of the intersessional processes (draft reports, manuals, technical guidelines, guidance & recommendations). Finalised intersessional products will be considered at the face-to-face segment of the meeting mentioned above, and the fifteenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Basel Convention scheduled for Geneva in July 2021.

“Despite the massive challenges society faces now not just from climate change but also from COVID-19, global environmental governance with respect to sound management of waste is alive and well. Perhaps never before has the importance of multilateral agreements and concerted, coordinated, globally agreed actions towards a healthy planet been so pressing and so visible. I’m proud of the steps the Basel Convention’s 188 Parties took this week and look forward to working with them to secure a healthier and safe environment for all” commented the Rolph Payet, Executive Secretary of the Basel Convention.

On plastic waste specifically, Payet went on to add “I applaud the efforts of countries that are tackling the challenge of plastic wastes heads on, for instance by legislating accordingly, I applaud also all stakeholders that support countries in their efforts, and I urge responsible behaviour by producers, traders and consumers alike. So I renew my call for all Parties to the Convention to uphold their commitment and continue to further strengthen efforts to reduce single use plastics, to ensure plastics enter into appropriate recycling systems and avoid dumping into the environment, in particular in developing country Parties.’

Notes editors:

The Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal is the most comprehensive international environment treaty on hazardous and other wastes and is almost universal, with 188 Parties. With an overarching objective of protecting human health and the environment against the adverse effects of hazardous wastes, its scope covers a wide range of wastes defined as hazardous based on their origin and/or composition and characteristics, as well as two types of waste defined as “other wastes”, namely household waste and residues arising from the incineration of household wastes ash. For more info see www.basel.int

The Basel Convention offers avenues for all States to take collective action towards minimising plastic waste generation at source and promoting environmentally sound management. The last meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP), 29 April to 10 May 2019 in Geneva, in addition to its decision to amend the Annexes to the Convention as they relate to plastic wastes[1] which become effective on 1 January 2021; decided upon a range of further actions to better address plastic wastes,[2] including the establishment of a new Partnership on Plastic Waste. More on plastic waste here:

http://www.basel.int/Implementation/MarinePlasticLitterandMicroplastics/Overview/tabid/6068/Default.aspx

The Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam, and Stockholm Conventions, or BRS Secretariat, supports Parties implement the three leading multilateral environment agreements governing chemicals and waste, in order to protect human health and the environment. See www.brsmeas.org for more info and follow the @brsmeas twitter feed for daily news.

Media enquiries, interviews, more information, contact:

Charlie Avis: Public Information Officer, BRS Secretariat

Charles.avis@brsmeas.org Tel: +41-79-7304495



* Subject to the availability of resources and a positive development of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) situation

The Basel Convention now has 188 Parties as Tuvalu accedes
Tuvalu has deposited its instrument of accession with the UN, entering into force on 19 November 2020.

The Basel Convention now has 188 Parties as Tuvalu accedes

The Basel Convention now has 188 Parties as Tuvalu accedes
 
All you need to know about the Basel Convention’s Open-ended Working Group meeting (OEWG-12) online segment, 1 to 3 September 2020
The OEWG-12 online segment takes place on 1 and 3 September 2020. For more details, including working documents in the 6 UN languages, see the tentative schedule of work.

All you need to know about the Basel Convention’s Open-ended Working Group meeting (OEWG-12) online segment, 1 to 3 September 2020

All you need to know about the Basel Convention’s Open-ended Working Group meeting (OEWG-12) online segment, 1 to 3 September 2020
 
Information sessions on the Basel Convention’s Plastic Waste Amendments
A series of information sessions will introduce participants to the Plastic Waste Amendments adopted at the fourteenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Basel Convention that will become effective on 1 January 2021.

Information sessions on the Basel Convention’s Plastic Waste Amendments

Information sessions on the Basel Convention’s Plastic Waste Amendments
 
 Impact of COVID-19 on BRS meetings <span class="attentionNote">(Updated 26 August 2020)</span>
 

Impact of COVID-19 on BRS meetings (Updated 26 August 2020)

 Impact of COVID-19 on BRS meetings <span class="attentionNote">(Updated 26 August 2020)</span>
 
Preparations for Basel Convention COP-15 underway: Bureau meeting report now available
The Bureau of the Conference of the Parties to the Basel Convention met online, 25-26 June 2020, to discuss preparations for COP-15 in 2021. The report of that meeting is now available online.

Preparations for Basel Convention COP-15 underway: Bureau meeting report now available

Preparations for Basel Convention COP-15 underway: Bureau meeting report now available
 
Amended Basel Convention text now available online in 6 UN languages
The new text includes the plastic waste amendments made at the 2019 Meeting of the Conference of Parties (COP-14).

Amended Basel Convention text now available online in 6 UN languages

Amended Basel Convention text now available online in 6 UN languages

 

Plastic Waste Partnership Briefing webinars organised to outline possibilities for funding actions on plastic waste
The new call for proposals will be presented and discussed during these Basel Convention online meetings.

Plastic Waste Partnership Briefing webinars organised to outline possibilities for funding actions on plastic waste

Plastic Waste Partnership Briefing webinars organised to outline possibilities for funding actions on plastic waste
 
Latest BRS Newsletter is out and available online
Click here for COVID-19 medical waste news and guidance, along with other developments related to the sound management of chemicals and waste.

Latest BRS Newsletter is out and available online

Latest BRS Newsletter is out and available online
 
Deadline approaching for applications to the new Small Grants Programme on plastic waste
Applications are invited from Basel and Stockholm convention Regional Centres until 15 July 2020.

Deadline approaching for applications to the new Small Grants Programme on plastic waste

Deadline approaching for applications to the new Small Grants Programme on plastic waste
 
Basel Convention’s COP Bureau meets online
Preparations for the 2021 Meeting of the Conference of Parties (COP-15) are discussed by the Basel Convention’s COP Bureau, during their online meeting on 25-26 June 2020.

Basel Convention’s COP Bureau meets online

Basel Convention’s COP Bureau meets online
 
Key waste management meeting goes ahead as international community focusses on implementation matters
The 14th meeting of the Basel Convention’s Implementation and Compliance Committee, online from 29 June to 3 July, will initiate its work with the consideration of 8 specific submissions from Parties.

Key waste management meeting goes ahead as international community focusses on implementation matters

Key waste management meeting goes ahead as international community focusses on implementation matters
 
Basel Convention’s Open-ended Working Group meeting (OEWG-12) postponed
Following feedback from regions, the OEWG meeting will not be held on 22 to 25 June 2020. Further consultations to take place on options for rescheduling.

Basel Convention’s Open-ended Working Group meeting (OEWG-12) postponed

Basel Convention’s Open-ended Working Group meeting (OEWG-12) postponed
 
Basel, Rotterdam & Stockholm conventions described as environmental governance “Hits of 2019” by IISD
Read the Earth Negotiations Bulletin’s review “State of Global Environmental Governance 2019” published recently by the International Institute for Sustainable Development.

Basel, Rotterdam & Stockholm conventions described as environmental governance “Hits of 2019” by IISD

Basel, Rotterdam & Stockholm conventions described as environmental governance “Hits of 2019” by IISD
 
Final call for Parties to submit their feedback to the Needs Assessment Questionnaires, responses still possible until 15 June 2020
Questionnaires have been distributed to Parties in order to gauge technical assistance needs and gather offers of technology transfer, to assist implementation of the three conventions.

Final call for Parties to submit their feedback to the Needs Assessment Questionnaires, responses still possible until 15 June 2020

Final call for Parties to submit their feedback to the Needs Assessment Questionnaires, responses still possible until 15 June 2020
 
Now online: Frequently-Asked-Questions on the Basel Convention Plastic Waste Amendments
Adopted by Parties one year ago in May 2019, the Amendments become effective on 1 January 2021. Learn all you need to know by consulting the Secretariat’s FAQ, newly online.

Now online: Frequently-Asked-Questions on the Basel Convention Plastic Waste Amendments

Now online: Frequently-Asked-Questions on the Basel Convention Plastic Waste Amendments
 
Children! Parents! Join Earth School for a different take on home-schooling!
The UNEP/TED-ed initiative has attracted millions of children worldwide since launching in April. Join the Plastics Quest, live from Monday 18 May, brought into your home by the BRS Secretariat and partners.

Children! Parents! Join Earth School for a different take on home-schooling!

Children! Parents! Join Earth School for a different take on home-schooling!
 
Sustainability after COVID-19: The medical waste response
BRS Executive Secretary joins UNEP, WHO, UNEP and others in a webinar on 19 May to discuss necessary responses to increased medical waste in light of the COVID-19 emergency.

Sustainability after COVID-19: The medical waste response

Sustainability after COVID-19: The medical waste response
 
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