Pops Can Kill People
Essay title: Pops Can Kill People
As a Parties of Stockholm Convention signed in May 2001, Governments are aware of the health concerns resulting from local exposure to persistent organic pollutants (POPs), in particular impacts upon women and through them, upon future generation. For the time being 12 substances are listed as POPs: aldrin, chlordane, DDT, dieldrin, dioxins, endrin, furans, hexachlorbenzene, heptachlor, mirex, PCBs and toxaphene. These substances possess toxic properties, resist degradation, bioaccumulate and are transported, through air, water and migratory species, across international boundaries and deposited for from their place of release, where they accumulate in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.
The overall objective of Stockholm Convention is to protect the human health and the environment from persistent organic pollutants.
According to this Convention, the Parties shall:
Take measures to reduce or eliminate releases from intentional production and use;
Take measures to reduce or eliminate releases from unintentional production;
Take measures to reduce or eliminate releases from stockpiles and wastes;
Develop plans for the implementation of its obligations under the Convention;
Promote and facilitate actions for public information, awareness, and education regarding POPs issues, as well as development of research activities and monitoring systems; financial support and incentives must be provided by the Parties in order to achieve the objectives of the Convention.
The Annexes A, B and C nominate 12 chemical substances identified as POPs taken into consideration by different articles of the Convention.
Measures to be taken:
The issue of effectiveness evaluation is addressed in Article 16 of the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants. Thus, paragraph 1 of that article states:
“Commencing four years after the date of entry into force of this Convention, and periodically thereafter at intervals to be decided by the Conference of the Parties, the Conference shall evaluate the effectiveness of this Convention.”
Paragraph 2 states:
“In order to facilitate such evaluation, the Conference of the Parties shall, at its first meeting, initiate the establishment of arrangements to provide itself with comparable monitoring data on the presence of the chemicals listed in Annexes A, B and C as well as their regional and global environmental transport.”
Further provisions related to effectiveness evaluation are stipulated elsewhere in the article.
At its sixth session, the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee for an International Legally Binding Instrument for Implementing International Action on Certain Persistent Organic Pollutants, in its decision INC-6/17, requested the Secretariat to begin to address the environmental monitoring and evaluation needs as described in Article 16 of the Convention and in doing so to:
Develop guidance on the nature of the effectiveness evaluation;
Identify the basic data needed to support the effectiveness evaluation;
Assess the capacity of existing monitoring programmes to make available necessary monitoring data and then begin making arrangements for the provision of comparable monitoring data for the effectiveness evaluation. Such assessment could be facilitated by continuing the work initiated by UNEP Chemicals for