Report: Pollution Politics – power, accountability and toxic remnants of war

Report: Pollution Politics – power, accountability and toxic remnants of war

In the first of two major reports, Aneaka Kellay examines how the weakness of current international humanitarian law allows the generation of conflict pollution that can impact both civilian health and the environment for long after the cessation of hostilities. The report argues that a new mechanism is needed to prevent and remedy environmental damage, to increase accountability and improve post-conflict response and assistance.  The executive summary and recommendations are presented below, and the full text can be downloaded from here. Executive summary and recommendations Introduction Humanity’s dependency on the […]

View PDF

Assessing the toxic legacy of First World War battlefields

Assessing the toxic legacy of First World War battlefields

With the passing of the 99th anniversary of the start of World War One in July, Andy Garrity considers the  substantial environmental legacy in several WWI (1914-1918) battlefields a century since the guns fell silent. Soil and marine sediment contamination has been caused by unexploded ordinance (UXO) and other warfare remnants, in addition to the incorrect disposal of the vast stockpiles that remained after the end of the war. “Sustained and intense fighting” left a legacy of environmental contamination WWI is renowned for its high death toll and the stalemate […]

View PDF

TRW – Discussion paper – Toxic Harm: Humanitarian and Environmental Concerns From Military Origin Contamination by Dr Mohamed Ghalaieny

TRW – Discussion paper – Toxic  Harm: Humanitarian and Environmental Concerns From Military Origin Contamination by Dr Mohamed Ghalaieny

This paper is the outcome of research done by the TRW Project into the scope of the problem from military-origin contamination. The paper overviews current health and environmental problems resulting from conflict and military activities before presenting limitations on the study of such problems and discussing existing legal and practical measures for environmental protection. The work also presents a methodology developed to study military-origin contamination in the appendix, this includes examples of problematic substances.

View PDF

UNEP – Assessment of environmental hotspots in Iraq

UNEP – Assessment of environmental hotspots in Iraq

The report of the initial UNEP assessment of sites that pose environmental concern following the 2003 Iraq War. The report gives a detailed assessment of five industrial sites that are an environmental risk due to conflict related damage, looting and bad environmental management. Bad environmental management predates the war, but is exacerbated due to the power vacuum created by confict. The report makes some conclusions on the number of sites of environmental concern (20-100), recommendations for corrective action to be taken in addition to details of required capacity building and […]

View PDF

UNEP – The Kosovo conflict: consequences for the environment and human settlements, 1999.

UNEP – The Kosovo conflict: consequences for the environment and human settlements, 1999.

A UNEP report on the state of the environment in the Former Yugoslav Republics before and after the 1999 Kosovo conflict. Attention is drawn to the environmental impact of large releases of toxic chemicals (e.g. dioxins) and heavy metals (e.g. mercury) from the bombardment of industrial sites in Pancevo, Kragujevac, Novi Sad and Bor, an issue with particular relevance to the TRW project. A main finding of the Balkan Task Force (BTF) preparing the report was the hot spots of pollution in the areas surrounding the industrial sites above and […]

View PDF

UNEP – Environmental assessment of the Gaza Strip, September 2009

UNEP – Environmental assessment of the Gaza Strip, September 2009

As a post conflict environmental assessment (PCEA), this report by UNEP examines damage to the environment of the Gaza Strip that was either caused or exacerbated by Israel’s Operation Cast Lead between December 2008 and January 2009. Examples of conflict related environmental damage with relevance to the TRW project included the presence of asbestos in the rubble of destroyed buildings, water quality issues due to damage to sewage facilities and ‘pockets’ of hydrocarbon contamination due to damage to small industrial sites. Conclusions regarding environmental remediation revolve around protecting water quality, […]

View PDF

UNEP – Ground contamination assessment report, military waste storage site, Astana, Afghanistan

UNEP – Ground contamination assessment report, military waste storage site, Astana, Afghanistan

A UNEP investigation into a military waste storage site near Astana, a small village in north east Afghanistan. The Astana site was used to store missiles and warheads, rocket fuel, warhead casings, rocket fuel, nitric acid and aircraft instrument display panels. The fieldwork conducted found the substances of environmental concern to be hydrazine, nitric acid, unexploded ordinance and radioactivity from tritium and radium within the aircraft instrument display panels. The general conclusion was that while there was an environmental risk, this would be dependant on the nature of any prospective […]

View PDF