EU seeks global ban on more
Published on 13-May-2005
The EU is pushing for international action to phase
out more persistent organic pollutants (POPs), which
cause long-term damage to people as well as the
Environment and industry non-governmental
organisations (NGOs) are also being encouraged to get
actively involved in the first global legally binding
agreement to protect human health, wildlife and the
environment from the toxic effects of these chemicals.
Toxic POPs can resist normal processes that break
down contaminates, can travel great distances in the
wind or water, and accumulate in the fatty tissue in
humans and other animals. So far, Norway has nominated
flame retardant pentabromodiphenyl ether and Mexico
has put hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH) forward, which
includes the pesticide
lindane. The EU has also nominated pesticide
chlordecone and brominated flame retardant
"Our prime aim is to ensure the necessary decisions
are made for the effective implementation and further
development of the Stockholm Convention (see < a href="http://www.edie.net/news/news_story.asp?id=9210&channel=0">related
story)," spokesman for the EU Colin Church stated.
"We have been seeking to work closely with
developing countries and countries with economies in
transition, as we are very aware of the particular
difficulties faced by countries that rely on POPs for
disease and pest control."
On the other hand, the biggest concerns expressed
by NGOs were connected with a perceived lack of
ambition in terms of the practical technical
implementation of the Convention's objectives.
Examples included the dioxin toolkit, designed to
help countries eliminated dioxin emissions, the
disposal of waste containing POPs, and guidelines on
best environmental practice to minimise the release of
unintentionally produced dioxins and furans.
Irish MEP Avril Doyle said it was vital to strike
the right balance between implementing the current
provisions of the Stockholm Convention and expanding
"We welcome the work that is now in progress to set
up a non-compliance mechanism, which will give teeth
to this Convention so that it is not just a paper
tiger," she commented.
By Jane Kettle
© Faversham House Group Ltd 2005. edie news
articles may be copied or forwarded for individual use
only. No other reproduction or distribution is
permitted without prior written consent.