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A Toxics-Free Future

Highlights Front Roll

Nepal's Standard on Toxic Substances in Children’s Products Should Be Enforced
Chlorpyrifos Pesticide Ban Reinstated in U.S.
New ACAT Report Addresses Effects of PFAS Chemicals on the Endocrine System
Working to Eliminate Harm to Human Health & the Environment from Toxic Chemicals
IPEN Regional Meeting for Southeast & East Asia

The IPEN MENA Regional Meeting convened from October 31st to November 2nd, 2017 in Hammamet, Tunisia

The IPEN Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Regional Meeting was hosted and organized by Association d'Education Environnementale pour la Future Génération (AEEFG), the IPEN Hub for the MENA region. Topics covered at the meeting focused on the Stockholm and Minamata Conventions, the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals
Management (SAICM), lead in paint, women and chemicals, building capacities, and the GEF Small Grants Program. Participating Organizations (POs) in attendance were also updated on the outcomes of the Minamata Convention’s 1
st Conference of the Parties (COP1) and the Stockholm Convention’s 8th Conference of the Parties (COP8).

IPEN's Asian Lead Paint Elimination Project has been selected as one of eight project success stories to be featured in the special issue of the SWITCH-Asia Magazine commemorating the program´s ten year anniversary. In addition, there is a special chapter about Nepal that also mentions the project. 

IPEN's project was selected out of the 95 project funded to date.

How to deal with toxic pollution: That was the main theme of the IPEN Central and Eastern Europe Regional Meeting that took place in Prague in October, 2017. The three-day conference of regional non-governmental organizations discussed a common future approach for Central and Eastern Europe. The meeting included an excursion to Spolana – a chlorine factory which is the biggest contemporary polluter of the Czech Republic. This trip showed how difficult, though not impossible, it may be to resolve historical environmental burdens.

Right in the historical centre of the Czech capital, environmental activists shared their experience regarding crucial issues of soil, water and air contamination from toxic waste. The conference brought together almost 30 participants representing fifteen European countries. The main goal of the meeting was to enhance the cooperation of environmental NGOs in the region, based on IPEN’s 2020 Global Plan and strategy. Maria Ekström Johansson, IPEN’s Operations and Finance Director, presented this strategy on the first day.

UN Expert Committee recommends global action on outdated DDT-Contaminated Pesticide

(Rome, Italy) A UN technical committee has determined that Dicofol, an outdated DDT-contaminated pesticide should be eliminated globally under the Stockholm Convention, an international treaty that bans the world’s most hazardous chemical pollutants. 

The week-long meeting of the Stockholm Convention’s expert committee was held from 17-20th October 2017 and attended by many industry associations and companies involved in the production and use of fluorinated chemicals.

In Rome, the expert committee tackled a recommendation for adding PFOA to the treaty, including possible exemptions for continued uses. PFOA is known as the ‘Teflon chemical’ or C8 and has widely polluted drinking water throughout the world. The Committee began evaluation of the industry’s fluorinated substitute, PFHxS, which has been widely used as an alternative for PFOS.

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(Gothenburg, Sweden) Decorative paint containing levels of lead dangerous to children is widely available in more than 50 low- and middle-income countries, according to a new report released today by IPEN, an international organization promoting safe and sustainable chemical use. Lead in Solvent-Based Paints for Home Use -Global Report is the world’s most comprehensive review of lead in paint sold around the world and brings together data from all paint studies conducted since 2009 in 55 countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. The report also includes never before released data from new studies conducted in 2017 in 19 countries.

“It is really quite shocking that manufacturers continue to produce lead paints for use in homes, schools and day care centers knowing that exposing children to lead can lead to permanent brain damage, especially since safer paint ingredients have been available and in use for decades,” said Dr. Sara Brosché, Campaign Manager, IPEN Global Lead Paint Elimination Campaign. “While some major producers have begun removing lead from their products, an alarming amount of lead paint containing lead levels dangerous to children continues to be sold in all regions of the world,” Brosché added.

IPEN joined the European Environmental Bureau (EEB) and 17 additional NGOs in a letter to the European Commission to express concerns about conflict of interest in the Stockholm Convention evaluation of PFOA (the “Teflon chemical”). PFOA is used in textiles and fire-fighting foams and to make coatings such as Teflon. 

In 2015, the EU nominated PFOA for listing in the Stockholm Convention and agreed to lead the evaluation drafting process. However, instead of carrying out the work in-house, the EU hired an industry consultancy (BiPRO). This resulted in proposals for a sweeping set of loopholes that undermine a global ban. BiPRO’s client list includes companies that make and/or use fluorinated chemicals, including PFOA.

In preparation for the 13th meeting of the Stockholm Convention's POPs Review Committee (POPRC), which will take place 17 - 20 October in Rome, IPEN has developed a Quick Guide to IPEN Views on POPRC 13. This document highlights IPEN's views on issues that the Committee will tackle at the meeting, including formal recommendations for listing two chemicals in the treaty: PFOA (the “Teflon chemical”) and dicofol (a pesticide linked to production of DDT).

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