Temas Glossary

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complementary law: in Brazilian law, a law intended to supplement, explain or add to the constitution, by providing details on a subject only dealt with generically in the constitution. These laws do not change the constitution nor become an integral part of it. Complementary laws require an absolute, rather than simple, majority of each chamber of Congress in order to pass. They can only be amended, revised or revoked by another complementary law.

compost: the end-product of composting that has some fertilizing value.

composting: the facilitation of natural aerobic decomposition processes so that the organic portion of solid waste converts into stable humus.

Consumers International (CI): A London-based NGO started in 1960 as the International Organization of Consumers Unions (IOCU) by consumer associations in five industrialized countries to serve as a clearinghouse for product test methods. It now has some 235 members in 113 countries and bills itself as the voice of the global consumer movement. CI's LAC office is located in Santiago, Chile.

controlled landfill: a landfill whose operation is subject to a permit system and to technical control procedures in compliance with the national legislation in force. A controlled landfill is a step above a dump but a step below a sanitary landfill.

Convention on Biological Diversity: international treaty signed by 150 governments at the 1992 Rio Summit to protect biological diversity worldwide. Now ratified by 193 Parties, the Convention establishes three main goals: the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components, and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits from the use of genetic resources. The Convention's secretariat is located in Montreal.

Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES): international agreement between governments drawn up in 1973 to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival. CITES provides a framework to be respected by each Contracting Party, which has to adopt its own domestic legislation to ensure that the Convention is implemented at the national level. CITES, now with 178 Parties, has been in force since 1975.

Convention on Nature Protection and Wild Life Preservation in the Western Hemisphere: a 1940 treaty concluded under OAS auspices to provide basic protection to wildlife and their habitats.

corrosive: has a pH of less than 2 or more than 12.5.

deliberate release (of a GMO): the intentional introduction into the environmental of a GMO or combination of GMOs without provisions for containment such as physical, chemical or biological barriers used to limit their contact with the general population and the environment.

deposit-refund system: system in which an extra payment is made when product (such as a battery or beverage container) is bought, but then partially or fully reimbursed when the end-of-life product is returned by the consumer to the retailer or a specialized collection point.

design for environment (DfE): intentional design of a product (sometimes under requirements imposed by, and/or with incentives offered by, governments) to reduce the environmental impact of the product.

dioxins: 75 chemicals produced unintentionally due to incomplete combustion, as well during the manufacture of pesticides and other chlorinated substances. They are emitted mostly from the burning of hospital waste, municipal waste, and hazardous waste, and also from automobile emissions, peat, coal, and wood.

direct marketing: delivery of a promotional message directly to end-users/consumers, rather than through intermediates or mass media.

DR-Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA): free trade agreement concluded between the US, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. The trade accord is accompanied by an environmental cooperation agreement.
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' Recycling & Solid Waste Policy
in Latin America and the Caribbean '
by Keith E. Ripley

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