Senior Researcher

Baskut Tuncak was appointed Special Rapporteur on the human rights implications of hazardous substances and wastes, also informally known as the Special Rapporteur on “toxics,” by the United Nations (U.N.) Human Rights Council in 2014.  He is the first mandate holder to explore in detail the full range of implications for human rights of hazardous substances throughout their lifecycle, following a groundbreaking expansion of the former “toxic waste” mandate in 2011.

Mr. Tuncak is an international attorney specializing in toxic chemical and pollution-related matters. His legal practice focuses on various national, regional and global laws and policies relevant to environmental pollution, contamination and the use of toxic chemicals in manufacturing.  He has worked on international trade, human rights, intellectual property, investment and environmental laws in relation to the regulation of toxic chemicals and pollution.

Mr. Tuncak is a visiting scholar at American University’s Washington College of Law in Washington, D.C. and was Senior Attorney at the Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL).  He has private sector experience with industrial chemicals, as a research and development chemist with U.S.-based pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.  Mr. Tuncak has served in advisory roles with the UN Environment Program (UNEP), the U.S. Government, and numerous non-governmental initiatives.