Shenzhen Zero Waste fights against "invisible pollution" to eliminate the health impact of toxic chemicals on Chinese people. Shenzhen Zero Waste envisions a toxics-free China with no more victims of toxic chemical pollution.
As E-commerce platforms have become common ways of shopping in China and around the world, more toxic products are flooding the market and companies cannot guarantee the health and safety of consumers and their families.
Through a public campaign, the project will encourage E-commerce platforms to establish chemical management systems to fulfill their social and environmental responsibilities—and implement appropriate measures to ensure the safety of their products.
In 2018, the organization began independently testing the chemical safety of products sold on E-commerce platforms and campaigning for chemical management for E-commerce platforms. Through a grant from the UNDP, the organization initiated a national network on chemical safety in China.
The project will take a two-pronged approach, focusing on major E-commerce platforms across China, with a focus on Beijing, Shanghai and Hangzhou where most companies are based.
- Independently sample and test risky products with a focus on children’s and women’s products such as toys, students’ stationery and cosmetics.
- Assess and compare major E-commerce platforms’ chemical management performance through a report card to be shared with the public
- Conduct research on the legal liabilities of E-commerce platforms on product and chemical safety, and, as needed, pursue legal action against irresponsible E-commerce companies.
- Establish communication channels with E-commerce platforms and increase exchange on chemical safety issues, including to provide alerts about risky products.
- Based on the chemical management performance report card, produce a guideline for establishing chemical management systems within E-commerce businesses.
- Build a product chemical risk database and send alerts to E-commerce companies to better control specific products and chemicals.
- Sampled and tested swimming crabs sold on 4 E-commerce platforms, and identified serious cadmium pollution: pushed all platforms to remove the problematic products and one platform to conduct internal inspection and take further prevention measures.
- Sampled and tested rubber ducks sold on 1 E-commerce platform, and identified high levels of phthalate plasticizer: pushed the platform to remove the products along with 18,000 suspicious links of similar products, and require all toy sellers to provide legal documents for their products.
- Published the first multi-platform rubber duck report: pushed three major E-commerce platforms to remove problematic products and strengthen their internal monitoring.
- Sampled and tested lipsticks sold on two E-commerce platforms, and identified serious lead pollution: pushed for the removal of problematic products.
- Sampled and tested erasers sold from multiple platforms, and identified serious phthalate pollution: pushed companies to commit to stop selling problematic products and one platform to remove fake and toxic products.
- Published the second multi-platform rubber duck report which showed increase in compliance rate from about 25% in 2019 to 60% in 2020.
Your support will contribute to improved control of toxic chemicals in consumer products around the world and help improve people’s health and safety.
- US$ 50 will help identify chemical risks in 1 consumer product (particularly toys, students’ stationery, cosmetics, seafood and food contact materials).
- US $250 will enable 1 intern to participate in 1 campaign against 1 toxic product sold on E-commerce platforms.
- US $1,500 will support a professional researcher in producing a report for 1 toxic product.
History & Leadership
Shenzhen Zero Waste Environmental Public Welfare Undertakings Development Center focuses on chemicals management and rural municipal waste separation promotion and practice. Their main activities include pollution cases intervention, applying for information disclosure, online public education, policy advocating, practicing and studying rural municipal waste separation and preventing open burning and small furnaces, especially in rural areas.
• Shenzhen Zero Waste was established and registered in June 2016, by Mao Da, Tian Qian and Tian Zuning.
• In 2018, the organization began independently testing the chemical safety of products sold on E-commerce platforms and campaigning for chemical management for E-commerce platforms.
• In September 2018, through a grant from the UNDP, the organization initiated a national network on chemical safety in China. In June 2019, the Chemical Safety Network was formally established.
• Co-founder Mao Da assumed the position of Executive Director in February 2019.