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JANUARY-MARCH 2022


 

Kenya Waste Pickers Association Chairperson Participated in UNEA

Centre for Environment Justice and Development (CEJAD) in partnership with SAGE Fund and Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternative (GAIA) has been assisting waste pickers in Kenya to self-organize and be formalized in order to collectively champion their rights to be included and be recognized as a vital part of waste management value chain internationally, regionally, and locally. To enhance their advocacy, the Chairperson of the Kenya National Waste Pickers Welfare Association, with the support of CEJAD and Women In Informal Employment Globalizing and Organizing WIEGO) support, joined other waste pickers globally at the United Nations Environment Assembly to speak about the challenges facing waste pickers, their contribution to the returning of materials back into the value chain, and the need for fair remuneration. They were also supporting the call for a legally binding treaty  to end plastic pollution.


 

Major court victory for communities fighting air pollution in Mpumalanga Highveld, South Africa

Environmental justice groups celebrate a landmark judgment in the #DeadlyAir case as a victory for environmental justice in South Africa with far-reaching consequences. In the judgment, the High Court has recognized the poor air quality in South Africa’s Mpumalanga Highveld region as a breach of residents’ Constitutional right to an environment that is not harmful to their health and well-being. The judgment, which recognizes air pollution as a violation of Constitutional rights, is a major victory for environmental justice groups groundWork and Mpumalanga community organization Vukani Environmental Justice Movement in Action (Vukani). The groups, represented by the Centre for Environmental Rights (CER) as attorneys, first launched the landmark #DeadlyAir litigation in 2019, demanding that the government clean up the toxic air in the Mpumalanga Highveld.


Advocacy to policymakers on ending toxic environment

  
Chidren's Environmental Health Foundation (CEHF) in Zambia conducted advocacy on ending toxic environment by visiting the Government Departments - Ministry of mines and minerals development, Ministry of Green Economy and Environment, Honorable Member of Parliament for Kabwe Central constituency, Civil Society organizations concerned with rights of the children, and visited the Statehouse for further negotiation.

Anti-Oil and Gas Exploration Strategy Planning Workshop - SDCEA

The South Durban Community Environmental Alliance (SDCEA) together with the fishers, key stakeholders, and organizations involved in the oil and gas struggle in South Africa held a meeting on the 2nd and 3rd of February 2022,  as part of an Anti-Oil and Gas Exploration Strategy Planning Workshop. This is in an effort to keep the momentum and pressure on Shell, other big corporates, and the government.  There was aslo a meeting with traditional leaders from Kwazulu Natal about the healthy oceans and rivers to say “No to oil and gas drilling in our water.”

Tanzanians call for prompt action on pesticides

A public debate on Pesticides Impact on Health and Environment held on 1 March 2022 at Alliance Francaise, with support from the French Embassy, prompted a lively debate among participants.  The discussion ranged from issues of pesticides in general, their health and environmental impacts, alternatives such as agroecological farming, and lobbying strategies. AGENDA, TAPOHE, Tanzania Organic Agriculture Movement (TOAM), Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS), and Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH) formed the list of co-organizers and panelists.
The public requested prompt action on individual, family, institutional, and national levels. They also asked for more debates to be organized to increase awareness to a wider public.

Presidential Climate Commission public consultations in Durban - SDCEA                                                                 

The corporations that have polluted South Durban cannot be allowed to just cut and run. In its first meeting with a community affected by the petrochemical industries, the Presidential Climate Commission (PCC) was told that the big refineries, Engen owned by Petronas and Sapref owned by BP and Shell, have both shut down. So South Durban is in transition but it is not a just transition.  
The refinery shut down has cut the air pollution but there remains a legacy of health impacts on the people of the community that stretches across four generations. These impacts start with the unborn child. Professor Rajen Naidoo at Occupational and Environmental Health at the University of KwaZulu Natal told the commission that when mothers are polluted, their unborn child is already affected as genetic changes take place in uterus. That child is then vulnerable for life and many do not develop as they should. And once they are born, they are immediately affected by the direct impact of the pollution. Children are frequently sick, frequently miss school and then cannot get work. So the cycle of poverty is reproduced.

Vermi-compost application-PAN Ethiopia                                                                

Pesticide Action Nexus Association (PAN- Ethiopia) has been working on Vermi-compost preparatio and application since 2019 in addition to Integrated Pest Management (IPM) methods of vegetable production in Adami Tulu Jido Kombolcha Batu area ( Central Ethiopia Rift Valley area). Vermicomposting is one of the organic fertilizers that play a great role in soil fertility enhancement. PAN Ethiopia has promoted vermi-compost use by small holder farmers of targeted villages by supplying vermi-compost shade constraction for Two Farmer Training Centres (FTCs) in the project area and for volunteer farmers who were willing, and technical support through Farmer Field Schools (FFS).

The African Youth SDGs Achievers Awards - AKO Foundation                                                          

The African Youth SDGs Achievers Awards led by Ako Foundation is designed to identify and honour individuals and institutions whose efforts are promoting youth inclusive governance and participation on the continent in the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
This year's Awards were held in UNECA Conference Center- Addis Ababa- Ethiopia on the 11th March 2022 and the theme for the Award was “Youth Resilience in Covid-19 era; Pathways to accelerate actions towards achieving the SDGs.”  33 Youth award winners were awarded across Africa (https://sdgachieversawards.org/winners-2022/).

UNEA5.2 Nairobi Kenya                                                         

The United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) in its fifth session convened from 28 February–2 March 2022 in Nairobi, Kenya, made historic decision by adopting a resolution setting up the path to a global treaty to end plastic pollution.  The resolution requests the convening of an intergovernmental negotiating committee to develop an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution, including in the marine environment, during the second half of 2022, with the ambition of completing its work by the end of 2024. IPEN AA was represented by Dr. Tadesse Amera, Mr. Griffins Ochieng, Dr. Leslie Adogame.

Free children from BPA's toxic legacy – IRTECO              

Irrigation Training and Economic Empowerment Organization (IRTECO), Tanzania on 3rd March 2022 released a report, How plastics poison the circular economy, showing the high content of Bisphel A in samples of hard and transparent plastic bottles and cups used in baby feeding in Tanzania (and other countries). The results necessitated for the national and international Call to Action to free Children from BPA’s Toxic Legacy.

Persistent and unregulated use of mercury in dental amalgam is slowly killing Ugandans                 

There are other better ways dentists can repair patients’ teeth without mercury – NESMAC-Kitara
Rose Kabagyenyi, the former Woman Member of Parliament for Kisoro District in western Uganda and former member of Natural Resource Committee in the 10th Parliament, said they are aware of the negative impacts of mercury on humans, especially the childbearing age group. Kabagyenyi, fancies the Natural Resource Committee to table a bill to institutionalize the ban on the use of dental amalgam. She acknowledged that the ministry of health and that of the environment supported the Natural Resource Committee in their efforts to move the bill into law during her time in parliament. She pleaded to say the population must be from mercury. Mary Atugonza, the head of Network on Sound Management Chemicals (NESMAC) Kitara, says the problem of dental amalgam is very common in the area especially among women and children, and they are creating awareness in schools and hospitals, that there are safer alternatives.

Stakeholders want expansion of plastic waste control, new regulations - Nigeria                 

Stakeholders in the environment sector have stressed the need to expand the plastic waste control to incorporate the global trend towards circular economy to ensure sustainability. Besides, they also called for domestication of Basel Convention as well as the Amendment by the Federal Ministry of Environment. The calls were made in a communique issued at the end of a day long first meeting of stakeholders on Strengthening National Advocacy for the Transposition and Domestication of the Basel Convention Amendment (Plastic Waste Regulations) in Nigeria, held in Abuja on Thursday, 27th January, 2022. The workshop was initiated by the Sustainable Research and Action for Environmental Development (SRADeV) in collaboration with the National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA) with the objective to strengthen the legal framework for environmental sound management of plastics from cradle to cradle and it was presided over by Prof. Aliyu Jauro, Director General/CEO, NESREA.

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