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Documents

Plastic Waste Management Hazards

2021 | Prof. Hideshige Takada, Dept. of Environmental & Natural Resource Sciences, and
Lee Bell, IPEN Mercury and POPs Policy Advisor

Plastic waste has become an unprecedented pollution issue around the globe. From visible plastic litter on land and in oceans to invisible micro-plastics in lakes, mountains, and rain, the planet is increasingly blanketed in the petrochemical remnants of plastic production. With petrochemical companies avoiding fossil fuel carbon liabilities by massively increasing plastic production, the amount of plastic waste generated is set to climb dramatically.

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Waste Trade in Southeast Asia: Legal Justifications for Regional Action

EcoWaste Coalition - JULY 2021  

The COVID-19 pandemic has already had negative effects on waste management, significantly contributing to increases in medical waste and household waste, and a substantial slowdown in recycling efforts. This upsurge in hazardous waste particularly endangers developing countries that are destinations for waste exports via the global waste trade.

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Toxic Chemicals in Plastic Waste Poisoning People in Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe & Latin America.

IPEN & Arnika, June 2021

Plastics and food packaging contain chemical contaminants from manufacturing along with many additives to make them inflammable, more flexible, grease-resistant, or sterile, as well as other substances to create many other properties. Many of these additives are toxic and they leak from products during use and can be released during recycling and from recycled products.

This study focuses on persistent organic pollutants (POPs), whose releases are closely related to plastic wastes. The POPs include additives in the plastic as such, as well as unintentionally produced POPs (UPOPs) generated mostly by burning, incineration and/or other thermal treatment of plastics. 

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Aquatic Pollutants in Oceans and Fisheries

IPEN & NTN | April 2021

Chemicals are polluting oceans and waterways, not only endangering wildlife and those who rely on seafood for sustenance, but threatening the collapse of many fisheries. In combination with global warming, this is a catastrophe in the making. This report is the first to begin to detail the numerous ways and places in which chemical pollution and climate change is destabilizing this marine infrastructure and the world's fisheries. We still have time to stop the destruction, but as this report indicates, we will need to go beyond thinking only about how to control overfishing or manage pollutants in the fish we consume. Our survival, along with that of all other species, will depend on ensuring the health of the entire ocean, an objective we all must work on together to achieve.

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Plastic's Toxic Additives and the Circular Economy

IPEN | September 2020

Toxic chemicals of concern that are widespread in common plastic products can hinder the momentum for a circular economy. A new report, coordinated by the Barcelona-based(1) Regional Activity Centre for Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP/RAC), serving both the Stockholm Convention and the Barcelona Convention, has been produced in collaboration with the International Pollutants Elimination Network (IPEN) in order to shine a light on extensive evidence of toxic chemical components in plastics that can harm human and environmental health and impede a safe circular economy.

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Dealing with Industrial Contamination: Problems and solutions from Thailand and a call to action

March 2020

The condition of Thailand's natural and social environment entered a crisis in 1990s, which resulted in major amendments to national laws concerning environment and pollution control in 1992.
 

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Call for a global ban policy on and scientific management of asbestos to eliminate asbestos-related diseases

Journal of Public Health Policy, March 2020 | Achyut Aryal and Craig Morley

Asbestos is a primary cause of cancer worldwide. Global estimates indicate workplace exposure of 125 million people and about 255,000 deaths each year. Of the approximately 300 million metric tonnes of asbestos ever produced worldwide, most will become waste and disposed of in landfills. The recycling and transforming asbestos fibre into a non-harmful product offer a sustainable solution, but a global commitment remains elusive. Urgent action is needed. 

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Lead in Playground Equipment in Thailand

IPEN & EARTH, October 2019

On 30 September 2019, EARTH visited Benjakitti Park and Lumphini Park located in Bangkok City, Thailand, and screened the playground equipment for lead content. In each playground, painted play equipment and the condition of painted surface were documented.  This study shows that 20 out of 24 analyzed pieces of playground equipment contained total lead concentrations above 90 parts per million (ppm), dry weight. In addition, 14 analyzed pieces of playground equipment contained dangerously high lead levels above 10,000 ppm.; 15 out of 16 bright-colored painted surfaces contained lead concentra­tions above 90 ppm, dry weight; and the highest lead concentration detected was 72,300 ppm in a red monkey bar at a public playground in Benjakitti Park, Bangkok.

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Trading Away Health and the Environment: The Toxic Business of Waste Imports into Thailand

Co-Authors: Tanya Lee Roberts-Davis & Penchom Saetang

Ecological Alert and Recovery - Thailand (EARTH) | June 2019

Trading Away Health and the Environment provides an overview of the devastating impacts on the health and well-being of communities in Thailand where industrial waste processing facilities are being developed as part of an ongoing expansion of the transnational business of plastic and used electronics waste and scraps.

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Toxic Hot Spots in Thailand

Authors: Jindřich Petrlík, Alice Dvorská, Václav Mach, Marek Šír, Jitka Straková, Akarapon Teebthaisong, Jana Tremlová, Peter A. Behnisch, Martin Bystrianský, Autthaporn Ritthichat, Penchom Saetang

By Arnika Association and Ecological Alert and Recovery - Thailand (EARTH) | December 2018

The data presented in the studies were obtained during sampling campaigns in Thailand in February 2015, February and March 2016, and February 2017. The sampling campaigns represent an important part of the project “Increasing Transparency in Industrial Pollution Management through Citizen Science.”

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"We Fight to Protect Our Home:” Reprisals Against Environmental Defenders in Loei Province, Thailand

A report by Fortify Rights, October 2018

This report reveals that Thai authorities and Tungkum Ltd. committed and contributed to serious human rights violations and abuses against members of KRBKG and environmental defenders in Wang Sa Phung District, Loei Province. Violations and abuses include the arbitrary detention of human rights defenders and violations of the rights to freedom of expression, peaceful assembly, a healthy environment.

Local residents in affected communities surrounding the gold  mine largely rely on farming and the natural environment for their livelihoods and sustenance. Water and soil pollution has adversely impacted their daily lives and livelihoods. Residents have also complained about health conditions...

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News

EARTH begins initial probe at illegal dumping site in Lopburi

EARTH Report | 21 September 2021 

EARTH’s initial fieldwork at industrial waste covert dumping site in Lopburi found widespread chemical leakage with VOC level reaching the highest limit of portable air detector. More samples are being collected for further analysis.

Following last week’s reports of covert dumping of industrial wastes in Phatthana Nikhom District, Lopburi province, technical officers from Ecological Alert and Recovery – Thailand (EARTH) investigated the two dumping sites and collected environmental samples for analysis.

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Government must ban imports of plastic scrap

Bangkok Post 27 August 2021 | Punyathorn Jeungsmarn and Penchom Saetang*  

Last Monday, members of the Anti-Plastic Scrap Citizen's Network submitted a petition to the environmental minister. The petition demanded the government impose a ban on the import of plastic scrap by the end of this year.

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Anti-hazardous Waste Network Calls for an Immediate End of Plastic Waste Import

Bangkok Tribune 25 August 2021

The import of “plastic waste” would hamper the state’s efforts to tackle plastic waste in the country while jeopardizing the local recycling business, the group reasons.

The network, led by EARTH and the Saleng and Junk Shop Association, has submitted a letter to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment calling for an end of the plastic waste import by this year. Over 108 CSOs and 32,000 supporters have signed through an online campaign in support of their move.

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End the Import of Plastic Waste by 2021, Thai CSOs Urge

EARTH 23 August 2021 

The network of 108 CSOs and environmental groups led by EARTH and the Saleng and Junk Shop Association submitted a letter to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment calling for an end to plastic waste imports by 2021.

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Plastic waste imports are 'unwanted'

Bangkok Post 06 August 2021  

Don't postpone ban, green groups ask

More than 100 environmental groups have called on the government to prohibit the import of plastic waste and instead encourage the use of domestic plastic waste for recycling as a way to safeguard the environment and promote the circular economy.

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Report Proposes Stronger ASEAN Response to Fight Global Waste Dumping

Press Release 04 August 2021 | EARTH

While governments of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) have individually taken action to address incidents of illegal waste shipments from affluent and more developed countries, the 10-member bloc has yet to unify and boost up efforts to protect the region from the drawbacks and hazards of the global waste trade.

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Waste not, want not

Bangkok Post 02 August 2021 | Suwitcha Chaiyong

Environmental groups are urging the Thai government to stop importing other countries' toxic garbage

"E-waste contains heavy metals and plastic, which contain toxic components. If waste management is not controlled properly, hazardous components, which contain carcinogens, can be released into the environment," said Penchom Saetang, director of Ecological Alert and Recovery Thailand (EARTH).

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Probe urged for permit allowing for Ming Dih Chemical to increase production capacity

Thai PBS World 13 July 2021

Thailand’s Industry Minister Suriya Jungrungreangkit has been urged, by an environmental advocacy group known as Ecological Alert and Recovery – Thailand (EARTH), to investigate why Ming Dih Chemical, whose factory exploded last week, was allowed to increase its production capacity of Styrofoam pellets, despite the fact that it is surrounded by communities and is not far from Suvarnabhumi International Airport.

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PRESS CONFERENCE (in Thai): Ming Dih Factory Blaze & Aftermath

PRESS CONFERENCE (in Thai): 13 July 2021 | Organised by EARTH

You are invited for the press conference organised by EARTH. We will submit the demand to the Minister of Industry to prosecute the offenders in the case of the chemical explosion and a fire at the factory of #MingDih Chemical Co., Ltd. which caused death and more than 60 people injured. Moreover, it incident also caused toxic pollution in a large area and damaged houses and people's properties the nearby neighbourhood.

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Blast sends stiff message

Bangkok post 11 July 2021 | Pratch Rujivanarom

Hazardous substance laws have barely improved since last tragedy

Thirty years after the deadly blast at a chemical storage venue at Klong Toey Port, the recent explosion at a plastic pellets factory is a wakeup call that Thailand's laws to regulate hazardous substances have not improved much from three decades ago, academics say.

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Ratify the Basel Convention Ban Amendment, End Toxic Waste Imports

EARTH 25 June 2021

Representatives from environmental NGO Ecological Alert Recovery – Thailand (EARTH) submitted letters to the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment and the Minister of Industry, calling on the Thai government to ratify the Basel Convention Ban Amendment, which will end the imports of toxic plastic wastes and e-wastes into the country and for government agencies to strictly regulate dirty recycling industries that cause pollution.

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Rayong’s hazmat processing company demanded ฿1.3 billion for environmental damage

Thai PBS World 17 June 2021

Pollution Control Department is demanding that a hazardous waste processing and recycling company in Rayong province pay compensation of more than 1.3 billion baht for damage caused to the environment and a community near its factory within 15 days, or face litigation.

Founded in 2010, Win Process engages in the business of sorting and recycling hazardous waste. Its factory is located in Village 4, Bang But sub-district of Ban Khai district of Rayong province.

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Nong Phawa villagers sue Win Process company demanding environmental restoration and compensation for agricultural losses

PRESS RELEASE | EARTH  07 June 2021

The villagers of Nong Phawa sue Win Process company for releasing pollutants into local waterways, causing widespread damage to local environments and farmlands. The villagers demand polluters compensate for the damage they cause and be held responsible for restoring the environment to its original condition.

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Anti-hazardous waste campaigners call for an end to hazardous waste exports and “dirty recycling” worldwide

Bangkok Tribune 05 June 2021  

In recognition of World Environment Day, global anti-hazardous waste campaigners from EARTH and Czech based Arnika have called for an end to global hazardous waste exports and  recycling industries which they brand as “dirty” through the “universal” ratification of the Basel Ban Amendment

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Environmental NGOs call for hazardous waste exports and “dirty recycling” to end worldwide

4 June 2021 | Press release of Arnika and EARTH 

BANGKOK/PRAGUE – In recognition of World Environment Day 2021, the NGOs EARTH (1,3) and Arnika (2,3) have called for an end to hazardous waste exports and dirty recycling industries through the universal ratification of the Basel Ban Amendment (4). As the world enters the UN decade of ecosystem restoration, pollution from dirty recycling continues to devastate local environments and health around the world. Without universal ratification of the Basel Ban Amendment, this problem will continue.

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