14 Jul 2016 Press release Chemicals & waste

UNEP Assesses Sites Impacted by "Probo Koala" Toxic Waste Dumping in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire

Abidjan, 14 July 2016 - Following a request from the Government of Côte d'Ivoire, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is undertaking an independent environmental assessment of sites affected by the dumping of toxic waste from the ship known as the "Probo Koala" in August 2006.

The field work component of UNEP's assessment was undertaken by a multi-disciplinary team of international and Ivorian experts between 4 and 14 July 2016.

The team sampled soil, water, air, vegetation, shellfish and sediment from the dumping sites and their surroundings, as well as from locations where contaminated materials were stored or treated. The samples have been shipped to three independent internationally-accredited laboratories in Europe to be analysed.

Results from these analyses will be compared to national standards in Côte d'Ivoire as well as international guidelines.

UNEP will publish its findings in a comprehensive report, which is expected to be ready by December 2016. UNEP will also make all of the underlying data publicly available.

Notes to Editors

The final report will be published online and in hardcopy, and will be available in French and in English.

All published information relating to the assessment will be made available at http://www.unep.org/disastersandconflicts/Default.aspx?tabid=1060527%20.

Additional information about UNEP's work in Côte d'Ivoire is also available at this website, including UNEP's Post-Conflict Environmental Assessment of Côte d'Ivoire, published in 2015.

This project is entirely financed by the Government of Côte d'Ivoire.

Photographs of the recently conducted fieldwork are available at:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/unep_dc/sets/72157670266025892/. For more information, please contact: Sophie Brown, UNEP Communications Advisor, Post-Conflict and Disaster Management Branch, [email protected], +41 22 917 88 39 UNEP Newsdesk, [email protected], +254 725 939620