William & Mary Environmental Law and Policy Review


Laura A. Pratt


Even though the phrase “toxic waste colonialism” has fallen out
of usage in the past ten years, the effective global management of transboundary
hazardous waste has yet to become an out-of-date topic. Starting
in the early 1980s, the international community sought to develop international
agreements governing the transboundary movement of hazardous
waste in order to protect developing countries from illegal “dirty dumping”
practices. Over twenty years have passed since the adoption of the Basel
Convention formed the foundation for other subsequent global protocols.
However, the ever-increasing global quantities of hazardous waste, including
the growing electronic waste issue, only exacerbate the disproportionate
risks faced by developing countries in current efforts of implementation
and policy of global hazardous waste management. The persistence of
these issues indicates that the transboundary movement of hazardous
waste and the international methods introduced to correct these problems
are ripe for reevaluation. Hopefully, by considering the loopholes in the
current international system and suggesting possible recommendations
for future global agreements, this area of international law can be more
effectively addressed.