New North Sea treaty signed after radioactive waste bust-up

A new Convention on the protection of the North Sea and north-east Atlantic was signed by 13 countries in Paris on 22 September after a row provoked by the UK's demand that it should be allowed the option of dumping radioactive waste at sea. Environmentalists were pleased to have secured a commitment to curb discharges of organohalogens in an accompanying action plan. Ministers also adopted a dozen new rules, most of which will apply best available technology to control releases from specific industrial sectors - and some which have displeased the UK's chemical, pharmaceutical and metal finishing industries.

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