WEBINAR: Waste Management During COVID-19 Pandemic

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WEBINAR: Waste Management During COVID-19 Pandemic
Location: Online
Organizer: UNEP
COVID-19 Response

Date: 16 July 2020  I   Time:  16:00 - 17:30 ICT    I   Register: bit.ly/2Zbg6g7


While COVID-19 is primarily a global health emergency, its impacts have been unprecedented on a wide spectrum of sectors. One of the most pronounced challenges to emerge from the COVID-19 crisis is waste management. The impact of both the health crisis and lockdown conditions has impacted waste management, from infectious and medical waste management to breakdowns in municipal waste systems, which has had both environmental and human health implications.

Over the last twenty years, United Nations Environment Programme has been involved in dealing with management of solid wastes during major disasters such as tsunamis and earthquakes. Many lessons from those experience are valid in dealing with the COVID-19 crisis. Hospitals handling COVID-19 cases generate waste which are potentially infectious, from materials used in patient care to the personal protective equipment used by the healthcare personnel. Even well-established medical facilities have been overwhelmed by COVID-19 waste. In areas without environmentally adequate waste management solutions that can responsibly handle medical, household and potentially disaster waste, locally appropriate solutions based on integrated waste management will need to be found.

In many countries, tens of thousands of people are involved in waste picking activities and the market for recycled goods has crashed. The COVID-19 situation has impacted livelihoods of waste pickers and increased stigma of their jobs. Therefore, this sector will also need special attention.

The UN Environment Programme and its experts will be delivering a webinar in order to increase awareness and provide guidance on the issue of waste management during the COVID-19 crisis. Participants of the webinar will also have access to additional reference materials and guidance.