INTERPOL Urges Countries to Set Up Environmental Security Task Forces

The law enforcement agency said establishing National Environmental Security Task Forces is an effective way to fight environmental crime.

INTERPOL has launched an initiative to encourage countries around the world to set up National Environmental Security Task Forces, known as NESTs. The agency launched the initiative at the 21st INTERPOL Asian Regional Conference on Sept. 18 with representatives of 40 countries participating.

A NEST is a national multi-agency cooperative formed from police, customs, environmental agencies, other specialized agencies, prosecutors, non-governmental organizations, and intergovernmental partners. It pools their expertise toward a common goal such as curbing pollution, conserving a species, or protecting natural resources, including forests and fish stocks. A recommended model of a NEST's formation and structure has been outlined in a National Environmental Security Task Force manual.

The concept was first proposed during a meeting of the Environmental Crime Committee in 1995 and was presented to the INTERPOL General Assembly in 1996. The General Assembly then asked the INTERPOL National Central Bureaus to set up a national working party to collect information and statistics on environmental crimes, ensure that crime analysis of data is carried out in each country, and be attentive to the problems of the law enforcement agencies and administrative departments responsible for waste control and look for ways to solve the problems.

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