World's largest operation to target waste crime deemed a success

Written by: Editorial staff | Published:
226 waste crimes and 413 administrative violations were reported during the 30 days of action

More than 1.5 million tonnes of illegal waste has been discovered during the largest ever global operation to target waste crime.

Coordinated by international police organisation INTERPOL, the ‘30 days of action’ plan (1-30 June) included the services of police, customs, border and environmental agencies from 43 countries to target all types of illegal waste.

It was initiated by INTERPOL’s Pollution Crime Working Group in response to calls from the global law enforcement community to gather more information about illegal waste streams between countries and regions.

The majority of the illegal waste discovered during the operation was metal or electronic waste, generally related to the car industry. In total, 226 waste crimes and 413 administrative violations were reported.

Joseph Poux, deputy chief of the Environmental Crimes section at the US Department of Justice and chair of the Pollution Crime Working Group, said: “The ‘30 days of action’ was a great success. Besides being the largest global anti-pollution operation ever, it shows what can be accomplished when countries work together to detect, disrupt and deter pollution crime.”

Results confirmed Asia and Africa were the main destinations for waste illegally exported from Europe and North America, with trafficking also occurring between countries within Europe.


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