martes, 18 de diciembre de 2012

Program from OAS will support financially the Basel Convention Regional Center in El Salvador to promote an important Environmental strategy in Central America under the leadership of CCAD

Soyapango will be the pilot municipality

BCRC-CAM, San Salvador, December 12, 2012.

It was with great pleasure that the Basel Convention Regional Center for Central America and Mexico (BCRC-CAM), located in San Salvador, received the news of its selection as a recipient of the Sustainable Communities Program of the Organization of American States (OAS). This selection will confer the financial resources necessary to support the
Central American Commission on Environment Development (CCAD) project to formulate a Regional Electronic Waste Strategy during 2013. The program, which supports community efforts in Central America and the Caribbean Island States will be supporting 14 projects in 9 countries and will also receive funding from the government of the United States of America.

Waste from electrical and electronic equipment, known as WEEE, is the fastest growing waste stream in the world, as a result of rapid technological progress mainly in information and communication technologies.

If WEEE is recovered in an environmentally responsible manner, it can help to promote sustainable development, boost economic activity by creating a new sector of the "green economy" where the positive effect on the sound health and environmental practices is complemented by reducing the need to extract more non-renewable mined resources and may even permit their use as raw materials for new products.

Conversely, in the absence of national or regional strategies, WEEE will be dismantled in an informal manner with possible risks to the health of the workers and potentially threats to population health and the environment. This potential adverse impact is due to the fact that WEEE not only contains recoverable metals and plastics, but may also contain toxic components such as lead, cadmium and mercury. Certain computers also contain brominated fire retardants, which are persistent organic pollutant and will endure in the environment for 200 years or more with the potential to cause severe health effects, especially to the reproductive system and they are also considered to be a possible carcinogen.

The Secretary General of the OAS, Sr. José Miguel Insulza, said that the initiative comes at a time when "the cities of the Americas are experiencing dramatic and rapid changes that require the fostering of dynamic and more sustainable cities, thereby reducing water and energy consumption while improving the quality of life and community engagement "
Mr. Miguel Araujo, Director of BCRC-CAM stated that "the American strategy for WEEE becomes meaningless if we don’t ensure that it is adopted by a municipality, and accepted by the local community. Hence the significance of the selection of Soyapango as the pilot municipality which was in response to the Mayor's vision of making El Salvador’s second largest city (500,000 inhabitants), a sustainable city. So because of this, it is important to raise the awareness of the “Green Economy” and promotion activities developed in this municipality”.
The winning proposal was prepared jointly by the BCRC-CAM and the Executive Secretariat of the CCAD, and was supported by the Mayor of Soyapango, FUNDEMAS, ACEPESA, a Costa Rican NGO specializing in WEEE and the Consultative Committee of the Central American Integration System (SICA).

The formulation of this proposal is in response to the decision of the Council of Ministers of the CCAD taken in June 2012 in Roatan that recognized the need to prioritize the environmentally responsible recovery of WEEE.

The BCRC-CAM receives financial support from the government of El Salvador for its core operations and facilitates cooperation at national, regional and international levels to promote training programs and technology transfer for the environmentally sound management of materials, substances and wastes in Central America and Mexico by working closely with governments, the private sector, NGOs and academia. BCRC-CAM is located in the Executive Secretariat of the CCAD, within the General Secretariat SICA.

Relevant Links:

OAS Press Release:

The project “Sustainable Communities in Central America and the Caribbean”  ( ) is financed by the  Permanent Mission of the United States for OAS.

See list of the 14 countries selected as beneficiaries: (

Gallery of pictures of the event:

Video of the event:

Audio of the event:

Press release of the Department of State of the United States of America: 

BCRC-CAM sites:

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