Indian Proposal to Halt Waste Dumping Defeated

A proposal moved by India to prevent developed countries from dumping their electronic and plastic waste onto developing countries was defeated at the meeting of the Basel Convention in Geneva.

The breakthrough was made through an amendment to the Convention to include plastic waste in a legally-binding framework. The amendment calls to make global trade in plastic waste more transparent and better regulated, whilst also ensuring that its management is safer for human health and the environment.

India insisted for a more stringent framework through a proposal which sought to prevent dumping of electronic and plastic waste since the text of the agreement in the current form allows countries to export various categories of plastic waste.

Current Guidelines in India

Indian laws don t allow electronic and plastic waste to be imported into the country. Even though Plastic and electronic waste recyclers in Special Economic Zones were permitted to import waste for recycling, they will not be allowed to do so after August 31 this year.

In spite of these restrictions, countries continued to ship different kinds of plastics and e-waste to Indian ports. Even though they may not make it to the mainland, they were ending up becoming India s problem since India was forced to spend money and recycle or dump it.

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