A Case Study of Muoroto Slum in Mombasa, Kenya, by Eco Ethics Kenya provides a valuable insight into the management of plastic waste and its adverse impacts on the environment and health of those vulnerable communities, especially artisanal recyclers, who carry a disproportionate burden. This case study underpins the recommendations made by Eco Ethics Kenya for urgent action to protect the informal waste sector through better training, support and worker safety protections.
As with many countries around the world, during the COVID-19 lockdown periods in Bangladesh, there was an increase in hazardous medical waste production. The increase in waste volume pressured the waste management infrastructures, which have proven insufficient to accommodate the unexpected increase. Furthermore,resurgence of single use plastic posed a serious threat for health and the environment. In the suburban areas, personal protection equipment (PPE), caps, and gloves were discarded into household bins, putting waste collectors' health and life at risk.
In January 2020, a ban on single-use plastics came into force in the territory of Morelos, Mexico, leaving 90 days for the development of the regulations of the Morelos Waste Law. This Law would establish the rules to materialize said ban, which, among other things, also established the obligation for commercial establishments to submit a single-use plastics substitution program to the environmental authority.
Gothenburg, Sweden Major investments in chemical recycling, plastic-to-fuel, and incineration to manage plastic waste is generating high volumes of highly hazardous waste and toxic emissions, according to a new report released today.
The report Plastic Waste Management Hazards is the first study providing a detailed account of how current investments in recycling schemes, both mechanical and chemical, will have very little impact on a growing, worldwide plastic pollution problem and will increase exposure to toxic chemicals in the communities where they are located.
Report co-author and IPEN POPs Policy Advisor, Lee Bell said, “No current management method for plastic waste is capable of alleviating the world’s expanding plastic pollution crisis. All methods generate significant toxic hazards because of the toxic additives that are a component of most plastic products. Industry’s championing of various recycling schemes is a marketing ploy designed to fend off plastic regulation and efforts to curb an escalating plastic pollution problem. The only solution to the plastic waste piling up in our communities and oceans is to limit plastic production to essential uses and eliminate the use of toxic chemicals in plastics.”
Plastic waste has become an unprecedented pollution issue, blanketing our planet in the petrochemical remnants of plastic production. This report examines current and emerging methods by which plastic waste is managed globally and questions whether any of them present a solution to the rapidly accelerating generation of plastic waste. In short, they don't and the only long-term answer is to produce less plastic.
Gothenburg, Sweden Toxic chemicals in plastic waste exports from wealthy countries are contaminating food in developing/transition countries around the world, according to a new study released today by the International Pollutants Elimination Network (IPEN).
Virtually all plastics contain hazardous chemical additives. Most of the plastic waste exported from wealthy countries to countries with developing economies or economies in transition is landfilled, burned, or dumped into waterways. All of these disposal methods result in highly toxic emissions that remain in the environment for decades and build up in the food chain.
For this study, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in fourteen countries which in many cases receive plastic waste from abroad collected free-range chicken eggs in the vicinity of various plastic waste disposal sites and facilities. The egg collection sites included plastic and electronic waste yards; waste dumpsites with significant amounts of plastic wastes; recycling and shredder plants which deal with significant amounts of plastic waste; and waste incineration and waste-to-energy operations.
Places like the US, EU, or Australia create vast amount of waste, including plastic waste, exporting much of it to countries lacking the resources or infrastructure to manage them safely. This study looked at levels of toxic chemicals samples of eggs in and around places where the waste is often burned openly to obtain metals or as a fuel source. The study found some of the highest levels of certain toxics, such as chlorinated dioxins ever measured in the environment.
Waste generated from the use of plastics is a challenge for the whole of human society. Plastics are everywhere around us, and we can find tiny parts of plastics in even the most pristine places. Most plastics were invented by chemical scientists, and in order to make the plastic suitable for many different uses or to make them meet legislative requirements for fire safety, for example, they need chemical additives that make the plastic resistant, flexible, durable or less flammable.