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Global Meet On Environmental Hazards Begins In Bali

A global conference on environment seeking joint action to address chemical and waste management issues began in the Indonesian resort island of Bali Monday.

Ministers, officials and activists from more than 100 countries will discuss better coordination between the three international treaties on hazardous chemicals - the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions.

Delegates from countries bound by the three Conventions plan to consider adopting a sweeping set of decisions that would link their efforts together.

A three-day conclave of world environment ministers are scheduled to begin Wednesday to discuss ways to promote a green economy and protect biodiversity and ecosystems.

The event, organized by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), comes two months after the UN climate change conference concluded in Copenhagen without reaching a consensus on a global deal that replaces the Kyoto protocol to set more rigorous targets to limit and reduce carbon emissions.

The UNEP estimates that the world produces 50 million tons of electrical and electronic equipment waste - or e-waste - a year and at least 8.5 million tons of hazardous waste move from country to country annually.

It names China, India and Indonesia as main destinations for used electronic goods from developed countries, which is deemed illegal by the Basel Convention that came into force in 1992.

In a report published on the opening day, UNEP recommended developing countries take steps on e-waste handling so that it would sharply reduce harm to health and environment.

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