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IPEN

A Toxics-Free Future

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View Report, Executive Summary, Infographic and Video here.

(Göteborg, Sweden) A new study has found elevated levels of toxic mercury in women of child-bearing age in countries across the Pacific, Caribbean, and Indian Ocean. More than half of all women who were sampled measured above the US EPA level of concern, and three out of four women measured had mercury levels that have been associated with the onset of mercury-related impacts to fetal development. The study establishes that mercury pollution has accumulated across the worlds’ major oceans, contaminating the marine food chain and posing a threat to a sizable portion of the world’s island populations.

This project relates to Sustainable Development Goals 3, 6, 8, 14 and 15.

Special thanks to IPEN's Anglophone Africa Regional Coordinator Silvani Mng'anya and IPEN"s Anglophone Africa Regional Hub AGENDA for their important contributions to the development and finalization of the project.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=8&v=Y55OPHSEdWE

For tens of thousands of people in Western Kenya, gold mining is a way of making a living.

On informal mines across the region, women use mercury to bring out the gold. But a recent study conducted by a network of international charities has found that the chemical could be slowly killing them - and affecting the wider community.

NYATIKE, Kenya (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Scorching sun beats down on half a dozen women as they carry large sacks of crushed ore on their backs at the Osiri-Matanda gold mine near Kenya’s border with Tanzania.

On wooden tables, they sieve the powdered ore into metal pans, add mercury, and heat the mixture over a charcoal fire. The air fills with fumes as the liquid metal evaporates - leaving behind a lump of gold. 

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