Buried in waste? Developed nations live in shadow of looming garbage crisis

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26-05-19 09:42:00,

An ongoing spat between developing and developed nations over garbage imports has drawn attention to an issue that ‘advanced’ countries seemed to have put on the back burner – waste management.

A bitter feud between the Philippines and Canada over a shipment of garbage made world headlines when President Rodrigo Duterte threatened to dump the waste in the North American country’s territorial waters, but this situation is in fact only the tip of the iceberg, or the garbage pile.

Major producers of waste

The developed nations that are among the biggest garbage producers have turned out to be unable to safely process it. They also produce the biggest volume of plastic waste, which was recently added to the Basel convention as a hazardous substance in need of special treatment.

The US and Germany, in particular, topped the list of advanced nations which produced the most plastic waste back in 2010. America generated 38 million tons of plastic trash at that time, followed by Germany at 14.5 million and Brazil at 12 million tons, according to a study published in September 2018.

In terms of plastic waste generation per person, Germany and the US were again at the top, this time joined by Ireland. Some other developed nations also did not trail far behind but this fact apparently stayed unnoticed for many years – all because the advanced nations found a “perfect” solution to this issue: exporting their waste.

No more outsourcing

But when China – arguably the world’s biggest waste importer and producer – refused to take in any more garbage from other nations in 2017, the US and other developed countries soon found themselves “drowning” in their own waste. Washington rushed to blame Beijing while urging it to reconsider its “catastrophic” ban on foreign garbage imports.

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Japan’s survey of 102 local governments found that a quarter of them accumulated plastic waste since the Chinese ban came in force, in some cases overreaching sanitary norms. The authorities admitted that they simply could not find new destinations to outsource their plastic after domestic costs of processing waste shot up.

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Why Does Russia Waste Time on Diplomatic Outreach to the US? – Stephen Lendman

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02-04-19 12:46:00,

Why Does Russia Waste Time on Diplomatic Outreach to the US?

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.orgHome – Stephen Lendman)

Days of when the US negotiated fairly with Russia (and other countries) ended during the Clinton co-presidency, never revived, reaching a perilous low under Trump.

Washington demands other nations bend to its will – pressuring, bullying, and threatening them to get its way, waging political, economic, financial, and sanctions war to assert its authority – attacking them belligerently if other tactics fail.

US promises when made are hollow, breached time and again, most recently against Iran, North Korea, and Russia, pressuring China to subordinate its rights to US interests on trade and other issues – unsuccessfully after months of trying.

US policymakers consistently say one thing, then do something entirely different – demanding everything, giving nothing in return, why they can never be trusted. 

Diplomacy with Washington’s political class is an exercise in futility, especially for Russia, US enemy No. 1, wanting Kremlin governance replaced by puppet rule it controls, wanting the country’s vast resources looted, its people exploited.

Most importantly, US dark forces want the world’s leading super-power eliminated – together with China the only nations able to challenge Washington’s aim for global dominance effectively.

The only language US policymakers understand is toughness. A spoonful of sugar may help the medicine go down. It accomplishes nothing in dealing with Washington.

When will Moscow stop calling the US its partner? When will its  ruling authorities no longer tolerate hostile US actions?

When will they stop pretending diplomatic outreach to Washington can work? When will they give its hardliners a strong dose of their own medicine – short of nuclear war?

It’s where things are heading if Moscow doesn’t challenge their imperial agenda with toughness. Why did Russia’s Foreign Ministry waste time informing the Trump regime why its military personnel are in Venezuela?

Unlike US contempt for rule of law principles, Russia observes them to the letter in geopolitical dealings with other countries – no explanations needed to anyone about its legal relations with Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela’s legitimate president, not imposter Guaido.

Calling on Washington to respect Russia’s right to cooperate with Venezuela falls on deaf ears at the White House,

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Vast fracking waste dumps are destroying Patagonia’s indigenous land (VIDEO)

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11-01-19 08:28:00,

Illegal fracking waste dumps are wreaking havoc on Argentina’s Patagonia region. Indigenous groups are suing some of the world’s biggest oil and gas companies for harming the environment in their ancestral lands.

The Mapuche Confederation of Neuquen filed a lawsuit against Exxon, Total, Pan American Energy (partially owned by BP) and Treater Neuquen in December. 

READ MORE: US oil production is set to soar past 12 million barrels per day

Members of the Mapuche community spoke about their concerns near Anelo in Neuquen Province on Thursday. Drone footage taken in the area shows a fracking waste treatment plant owned by Treater Neuquen, which treats waste for these energy companies.

“Nearby we have a landfill that is completely polluted,” resident Mariela Mancilla told Ruptly. “The companies discard everything in the land and then cover it once it’s there.”

An illegal open-air dump the size of 15 football fields, owned by Treater, is only 5km (3 miles) away from Anelo and close to water supplies.

“All the soil they cover is soaked in oil, all that goes to the rivers, when it rains, so we fear the water is contaminated 500 times more than what is allowed,” she added.

Jorge Nahuel, co-ordinator for the Mapuche Confederation of Neuquen, told Ruptly that the garbage dump installed just last year is already “saturated,” and that local residents can’t get guarantee it will be able to hold all of the waste produced by fracking.

Locals are well aware of the problem, he said, “because we suffer when we turn on the water tap.”

“There are skin problems, there are problems in the nervous system, cancer tumours that are growing in the population,” Nahuel explained.

Greenpeace has accused the corporations of flaunting regulations and of conducting “environmental vandalism.”

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Is Diplomacy A Waste Of Time With Washington?

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09-12-18 09:17:00,

Authored by Stephen Lendman,

The US is a serial lawbreaker, operating by its own rules, no others.

Time and again, it flagrantly breaches international treaties, Security Council resolutions, and other rule of law principles, including its own Constitution.

Diplomacy with Republicans and undemocratic Dems is an exercise in futility.

Trump’s JCPOA pullout and threatened INF Treaty withdrawal show Washington can never be trusted.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova’s proposed US outreach to discuss INF Treaty bilateral differences is well intended – despite knowing nothing is accomplished when talks with Washington are held, so why bother.

It’s just a matter of time before the US breaches another promise. They’re hollow when made. Kremlin good intentions aren’t enough to overcome US duplicity and implacable hostility toward Russia.

“We are ready to continue the dialogue in appropriate formats on the entire range of problems related to this document on the basis of professionalism and mutual respect, without putting forward unsubstantiated accusations and ultimatums. Our proposals are well known and remain on the negotiating table,” said Zakharova, adding:

“We have admitted (US) documents for further consideration. This text again includes accusations in the form of unfounded and unsubstantiated information about Russia’s alleged violations of this deal.”

Comments to Washington like the above and similar remarks are like talking to a wall. The US demands all countries bend to its will, offering nothing in return but betrayal – especially in dealings with Russia, China, Iran, and other sovereign independent governments it seeks to replace with pro-Western puppet ones.

Not a shred of evidence suggests Russia violated its INF Treaty obligations. The accusation is baseless like all others against the Kremlin.

“No one has officially or by any other means handed over to Russia any files or facts, confirming that Russia breaches or does not comply with this deal,” Zakharova stressed, adding:

“We again confirm our consistent position that the INF Treaty is one of the key pillars of strategic stability and international security.”

It’s why the Trump regime intends abolishing it by pulling out. Strategic stability and international security defeat its agenda. Endless wars and chaos serve it.

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Raqqa: A City Laid Waste, The Law Laid Low | New Eastern Outlook

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02-11-18 11:06:00,

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“We must demonstrate that those who have committed the most serious crimes of international concern can have no place to hide. There must be no impunity for the horrendous acts taking place on a daily basis in Syria. There must be justice for the victims. It may take a long time. Sadly, I fear it will take a long time but there must be justice.”

So said the UK Permanent Representative to the UN General Assembly at the debate on the role of the International, Impartial, Independent Mechanism to Assist in the Investigation and Prosecution of Persons Responsible for the Most Serious Crimes under International Law Committed in the Syrian Arab Republic since March 2011, on April 18, 2018, citing the very long title for a very dubious organ of the United Nations that gets its funding primarily from NATO countries and their allies.

In her speech to the General Assembly the UK representative set out the real objective of this organ, to build propaganda against the Syrian government for crimes alleged by the US and its allies. The only Syrians referred to in her speech are what the western aggressors like to term the Syrian “civil society” and all their disparate NGO’s that are funded in one way or another by the very governments attacking Syria.

The mandate of this new UN organ, founded by a UN General Assembly resolution on December 21, 2016, which organ they term “the Mechanism” is stated on its website to be to assist in the prosecution of those responsible for war crimes in Syria since 2011, to collect and share evidence, prepare files for prosecution in national or international tribunals and to bring about justice for the victims of war crimes.

Yet nowhere on its website will you find any mention of the crimes committed by the very powers that organized the creation and funding of this Mechanism nor the crimes of the various forces attacking the Syrian government and civilians whether mercenaries or ISIS or their supporters. You will find nothing on American war crimes. You will find nothing on the laying waste of an entire country to achieve western imperial and colonial ambitions, nothing on what they have done to the city of Raqqa.

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