WIT Press


E-waste Transboundary Movement Violating Environmental Justice

Price

Free (open access)

Paper DOI

10.2495/RAV060101

Volume

99

Pages

10

Published

2006

Size

577 kb

Author(s)

J.-h. Kim

Abstract

This study examined the problems in the transboundary movement of e-waste with respect to the process of the importation and treatment of e-waste (electronic waste), from the point of view of environmental justice. If the relationships between e-waste-exporting countries and -importing countries is considered in terms of their economic interests, various positive factors surface. If the problem is considered from the standpoint of environmental justice, however, both countries are guilty of complicity. In the short-term economic interests, if these are understood in terms of economic justice, e-waste importation is still not recommended; and if it is considered in the context of environmental justice, it is clearly an international criminal act. In this context, this study also suggested why this problem requires another policy, in response to the WTO system that controls international trade. Keywords: electronic waste, hazardous wastes, environmental justice, human right, global environmental governance, basel convention, WTO. 1 Introduction Recently, the UN Commission on Human Rights addressed the links between the environment and human rights, by concluding that everyone has the right to live in a world free from toxic pollution and environmental degradation. Due to economic reasons, however, many small and significant cases violating such primary human rights occur. Constructing or operating environmentally hazardous sources or facilities in economically poor areas is an environmental injustice and cannot simply depend on the market mechanism. This is because the act of discriminately violating man’s primary environmental right can never be accepted by reason of unequal economic status.

Keywords

electronic waste, hazardous wastes, environmental justice, human right, global environmental governance, basel convention, WTO.