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The Ineffectiveness and Inadequacies of International Instruments in Combatting and Ending the Transboundary Movement of Hazardous Wastes and Environmental Degradation in Africa

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Despite the fact that international instruments prohibit such activities, recent recurrent incidents involving the transboundary movement of hazardous wastes on the African continent highlight their inadequacies and ineffectiveness of international law in solving this problem. Despite some noticeable milestones achieved by the Bamako Convention, its shortcomings are conspicuous. In addition, the ban on transboundary movement of hazardous wastes is simply one dimension of the bigger problem faced by (many poor) African countries: poor management of the environment that ranges from water and air pollution, poor disposal of wastes, improper and inadequate treatment of domestically generated hazardous wastes, congestion, noise, and dumping. These international instruments deal with only a dimension of the problem faced by African states. It is argued that additional measures must be taken to complement these efforts. Such measures include the enactment of strong laws and policies, education of the masses and a virile civil society.

Affiliations: 1: School of Postgraduate Studies and Research, Faculty of Law, North-West UniversitySouth Africa


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