Good job bringing this to light. People won't realise how huge the problem is and municipalities are woefully ill equipped to...
Agreed; mining can never be sustainable, but then how do you get the metals to make all the things you need in the course of...
Very good piece.
SEVERAL Indian voluntary organisations
held a demonstration in front of the
ministry of environment and forests
(MEF) on April 17, demanding that India
ratify the Basel convention and stop
all imports of hazardous wastes.
Greenpeace activists from at least seven
countries were present at the demonstration. They later met the minister,
Saifuddin Soz, who assured them that
India would accept the principles of the
Basel convention, and that "India would
not accept wastes that were hazardous
to its people".
According to Nityanand Jayaraman,
an Indian Greenpeace activist, the
minister had assured them that
they would be consulted when the
MEF drew up a list of what substances
constituted hazardous wastes. "The
MEF has a committee which is examining
the various waste imports. Based on
the recommendations of this committee, India will decide which wastes
are hazardous and which wastes
are recyclables. Being assured a
chance to be a part of the process, would
appear to be a good start for us," says
The Indian voluntary groups, which
organised the demonstration, have
formed a core group, the Basel Action
Network (BAN). This watchdog group
has been set up to monitor India's stand
in the Basel convention negotiations
and also the wastes India lists as
hazardous. There are several cases pending before the courts, with two Delhi
High Court orders banning the imports
of lead and zinc wastes.
The Basel ban, which was endorsed
by all parties in September 1995, stands
as an impressive legal landmark. For
long, unscrupulous business interests
in rich nations have exploited the
less stringent regulations and weak infrastructure in poor countries to
avoid the responsibility of minimising
their wastes at home. The Basel ban is
the developing world's answer to this