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MAY 2022

Taiwan announces a ban on PVC food packaging in 2023. The manufacturing, import, and sale of food packaging containing polyvinylchloride (PVC) will be banned in Taiwan starting in July 2023, the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) announced. 

The Taiwan Watch Institute has been calling on the EPA to phase out all PVC products for nearly two decades now. It's not just the environmentalists campaigning against PVC but also the plastic recyclers because it is unstable in high temperatures and uses lots of plasticizers that make it more easily degradable and produces more pollutants during the melting process.

The Wonjin Institute for Occupational and Environmental Health (WIOEH) Korea meet with IPEN POs in South, Southeast, and East Asia on a new project, "Cosmetics without Harms." The project supported by the Beautiful Foundation aims to help eliminate mercury in cosmetics through data generation and use it in policy lobby.  Manny Calonzo shared the EcoWaste Coalition's plan for the project implementation and utilization of the study results. The seven (7) POs (5 from the SEA Region - IDIS, CAP, CGFED, Gita Pertiwi, and EWC) involved in the project will have to develop their organizational implementation plan and strategy and the project implementation will be from March - to October this year. 
EARTH Thailand, together with the Arnika Association (Czech Republic) and the International Pollutants Elimination Network (IPEN), call on the Thai government to enforce stricter limits for hazardous substances in waste at the upcoming Conference of the Parties (COPs) to the Basel, Rotterdam, and Stockholm Conventions in Geneva.
The amount of waste imported into Thailand has increased rapidly since the Chinese government imposed a ban on imports of plastic waste in 2017. As a result, Thai communities are suffering from the processing of imported waste, which constitutes a high environmental burden.
SHARPS, Korea conducted a book talk to launch “<Dying for an iPhone>”, a report on the labor conditions of Foxconn, the ‘electronics empire’ that produces Apple products last May 2, 2022. Stories of two workers, the realities of workers in the semiconductor and electronics industry, the responses by governments and corporations, and the struggles of workers were discussed in the online book talk.
Greeners Action Hongkong continues to campaign for the ban of single-use plastics. Recently, nearly 25 percent of Hongkongers support a total ban on umbrellas bags, a public engagement conducted by the Council for Sustainable Development found. The council launched a territory-wide public engagement last year on the control of single-use plastic, receiving over 9,400 views from organizations, companies, and individuals.
Selangor’s Tourism and Environment Exco Exco Hee Loy Sian, of Malaysia announced on May 19, 2022, five new policies in connection with the operation of a plastic waste recycling plant in the state including not allowing the import of plastic waste for recycling purposes or final disposal by a plant that operates the plastic waste recycling process. Non-governmental organizations (NGOs), including Sahabat Alam Malaysia and Consumers Association of Penang praised the government's steps to contain pollution and urge other countries to follow Selangor.
BAN Toxics calls on the Philippine government to ratify total ban on imported wastes. “We appeal to the Philippine government to ratify the Basel Ban Amendment immediately. Put the responsibility of policing hazardous waste exporters to the country of export, such as Canada, Hong Kong, and Australia. We need to be smart in addressing the problem, and the Basel Ban Amendment is a valuable tool towards protecting a significant portion of the population who are at risk by toxic waste dumping.” Reynaldo San Juan, executive director BAN Toxics.
EcoWaste Coalition: Break Illicit Trade of Toxic Beauty Creams with Mercury.
In spite of a public health warning issued by the Philippine government almost five years ago, local dealers of mercury-containing “beauty creams” from South Asia continue to ply their poison cosmetics. “Despite the explicit threats of regulatory actions and sanctions, beauty product stores and online vendors continue to sell with impunity the ‘made in Pakistan’ Goree Beauty Cream with Lycopene and Goree Day & Night Beauty Cream,” stated Aileen Lucero, National Coordinator, EcoWaste Coalition.
Across the region
Under the guise of “carbon neutral” energy, Japan and South Korea’s appetite for woody biomass for electricity generation has increased exponentially over the past decade and continues to grow. The two nations’ biomass subsidies are spurring an increase in the production of wood for burning in Southeast Asia and North America, putting pressure on forests in those regions.
Interfacing Development Interventions for Sustainability (IDIS) called on winners and losers in the May 9 polls to collect and dispose of their campaign paraphernalia properly. IDIS executive director Atty. Mark Peñalver said, that after the May 9, 2022 national and local elections in the Philippines, several campaign materials are uncollected, many of them left on sidewalks and open areas.
IPEN Global Webinar Updates
Sincere thanks to all IPEN SEA POs on your continued support in the promotion and your actual participation in the webinars last month.
Revealing Chemicals in Food Contact Materials, Health Threats, and Global Policy Opportunities
Co-organized with Endocrine Society, Food Packaging Forum and the Biomonitoring Resource Center, the webinar provided public access to the latest science on toxics in plastic food containers and overview of global policy regulations & opportunities to address chemicals of concern
𝗖𝗶𝘁𝗶𝘇𝗲𝗻 𝗦𝗰𝗶𝗲𝗻𝗰𝗲: 𝗔 𝘀𝘁𝗿𝗮𝘁𝗲𝗴𝗶𝗰 𝗮𝗽𝗽𝗿𝗼𝗮𝗰𝗵 𝘁𝗼 𝘀𝗼𝗹𝘃𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝘁𝗼𝘅𝗶𝗰 𝘄𝗮𝘀𝘁𝗲 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗰𝗵𝗲𝗺𝗶𝗰𝗮𝗹 𝗶𝘀𝘀𝘂𝗲𝘀 𝗶𝗻 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗦𝗘𝗔 𝗿𝗲𝗴𝗶𝗼𝗻.
In recognition of public participation in research by collecting data, analyzing results, and utilizing it in resolving the biggest problems in science.
This year's first IPEN SEA D-Tox session aimed at improving understanding on how citizen science works, challenges, and opportunities, providing opportunity for more IPEN POs in the region to share their citizen science initiatives, and fostering collaboration among POs in sharing related resource materials. This D-Tox session was co-organized with CitizenScience.Asia, EARTH Thailand and EcoWaste Coalition.
𝗖𝗵𝗲𝗺𝗶𝗰𝗮𝗹𝘀 (𝗣𝗙𝗔𝗦) 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗶𝗿 𝗙𝗼𝗿𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗿 𝗘𝗳𝗳𝗲𝗰𝘁𝘀 𝗼𝗻 𝗛𝘂𝗺𝗮𝗻 𝗛𝗲𝗮𝗹𝘁𝗵
The webinar discussed how perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances or PFAS, also known as the "forever chemicals," which are found in consumer and household items — from food packaging to cosmetics — are risk factors for the occurrence of breast cancer among Filipino women. The findings of a pioneering study by the University of the Philippines researchers led by Prof. Michael Velarde, in cooperation with the University of California San Francisco, will be presented at the event.
This webinar is organized by the EcoWaste Coalition, in partnership with the International Pollutants Elimination Network-Southeast and East Asia (IPEN SEA), Interfacing Development Interventions for Sustainability - IDIS看守台灣協會 Taiwan Watch Institute (TWI), and Consumers Association Penang - CAP
Like and share IPEN SEA Facebook page and visit IPEN SEA Hub Page. 
We are also posting on-going initiatives, related campaigns, webinar invitations and other important updates there so please visit our page.  
SNAPSHOTS is a monthly news brief featuring the latest work of IPEN Participating Organizations in the Southeast and East Asia region.

Do you want your latest stories and updates featured in SNAPSHOTS? Share them to our IPEN SEA regional list serve or email them to

IPEN SEA Regional Hub: Ecowaste Coalition Philippines
78-A Masigla Extension, Barangay Central, 1100 Quezon City, Philippines
(+632) 8294 4807 / /
Contact Point: Chinkie Peliño-Golle, IPEN SEA Regional Coordinator

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