BRS COP, Highlights of 2 May 2023

The Basel, Rotterdam, and Stockholm (BRS) treaties addressed a variety of topics pertinent to both these treaties on chemicals and wastes. The broad issues that nations face while implementing and adopting ambitious steps on chemicals and waste are strongly tied to these accords.

The BRS Conventions considered providing developing nations with technical support and financial resources to help them fulfill their responsibilities under the Conventions. By adding new substances or wastes to existing regulations, these accords continually update their rules. Therefore, following each COP, nations are faced with fresh problems. This increases the financial demands on emerging nations.

The Rotterdam Convention’s compliance mechanism was formed in 2019, although the Basel Convention has existed for a long time. The matter has been unresolved for the Stockholm Convention for 19 years. A number of nations mentioned the Stockholm Convention’s expanding requirements and the need for financial resources to support compliance. Others agreed, saying that a compliance committee may assist nations in situations when there may be possible non-compliance.

The listing of UV-328, a UV filter used in polymers, and Dechlorane Plus, a flame retardant, was still being discussed at the Stockholm Convention. Some nations called for allowing the continued production and use of these particular parts after learning that these chemicals were being used in medical equipment.

The Basel Convention addressed several technical guidelines. These included discussions on how to manage waste lead acid batteries and other waste batteries, including those containing lithium that are expected to be a growing waste management concern. Global demand for lithium-ion batteries is expected to increase elevenfold by 2030 as the world turns to electric vehicles and other clean energy technologies, creating future waste challenges.

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