Chemicals and Waste Management

Chemicals and Waste Management

Chemicals bring many benefits to societies and represent a vital element of human development. However, without good management and disposal practices, chemical substances as well as wastes have the potential to pose significant risks to human health and the environment, with the poorest members of the global community, particularly women and children, most vulnerable to their negative effects.

UNDP promotes the Sound Management of Chemicals (SMC) and Waste as an important aspect of our work to reduce global poverty and achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

UNDP’s targets unsustainable management approaches, as well as unsustainable consumption and production patterns, including poor design and material choices. These issues are the root causes for resource depletion, waste generation and pollution, impeding sustainable human development.

Within the framework of the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM), UNDP advocates for the integration of sound chemicals management priorities into national environmental and poverty reduction planning frameworks and helps countries access resources to improve their chemical and waste regimes.

UNDP assists developing countries and countries with economies in transition to:

  • Integrate the sound management of chemicals  into national development plans and policies
  • Manage chemicals of particular concern for pro-poor policies (POPs, ODS, heavy metals and others)
  • Strengthen national capacities on integrated waste management, including waste prevention, reuse and recycling, and disposing a range of waste streams.
  • Supporting national and local efforts towards a “Green economy” and sustainable materials management.

In addition UNDP assists developing countries and countries with economies in transition to set-up national financial mechanisms to access, integrate and sequence different sources of environmental financing.

Important cross-cutting elements of UNDP’s work in the area of chemicals- and waste- management are the Safeguarding of the Global Climate, Gender Mainstreaming, as well as the protection of International Waters.

UNDP’s chemicals and waste management work draws funding from UNDP’s Environment and Energy Thematic Trust Fund (TTF), the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the Multilateral Fund for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol (MLF), the SAICM Quick Start Programme Trust Fund (QSPTF), as well as various other bi-lateral donors and partners.

Our Projects in the News

Demonstrating best practices in handling medical waste

The global project (implemented in a partnership with GEF, UNDP, WHO, and the international non-governmental organization coalition Health Care Without Harm) is demonstrating and promoting the use of best practices and techniques for healthcare waste management in 7 countries. The goal is to protect public health and the global environment from the impacts of dioxin and mercury releases. Please read on about one of project's success stories in India.

Supporting Ghana to eliminate Polychlorinated Biphensyls (PCB)

Financed through a Global Environment Facility (GEF) the project (implemented in a partnership with UNITAR, and EPA Ghana) is building the capacity to eliminate the use of PCBs in environmentally sound manner.

 

In Focus
Integrating sound management of chemicals into national planning

In a piece for the new edition of Planet B Magazine, Senior Technical Advisor at the UNDP Montreal Protocol and Chemicals Unit, Klaus Tyrkko, explains how integrating sound management of chemicals into national planning is key to achieving an inclusive and sustainable future. Click here to read the piece and to access the full edition.

Demonstrating best practices in handling medical waste

The global project (implemented in a partnership with GEF, UNDP, WHO, and the international non-governmental organization coalition Health Care Without Harm) is demonstrating and promoting the use of best practices and techniques for healthcare waste management in 7 countries. The goal is to protect public health and the global environment from the impacts of dioxin and mercury releases.

Please read on about one of project's success stories in India.