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IPEN

A Toxics-Free Future

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Industrial Chemicals and Processes

Health and Environmental Hazards of Mercury in Fish in Armenia

AWHHE researched the damage done to the Lake Sevan basin area from the Sotq gold mine. AWHHE found that catastrophic destruction of the watershed (Lake Sevan and numerous rivers), which is of vital importance to the approximately 250,000 people living in the basin, is likely if the polluting activities of themine aren't stopped. Additionally, the gold mine crush activities contaminate the atmosphere with trace heavy metals, among them the radioactive thorium. AWHHE also collected and sent hair samples to an accredited laboratory for mercury analysis.

Advancing the SAICM Mission: Convening Multi-Sectoral National Nepalese SAICM Implementation Forums

By hosting and facilitating a series of Round Table Meetings with relevant government ministries and stakeholders, Forum for Justice (FFJ) created a platform that provided opportunities to share and provide detailed information about the SAICM. Meetings were organized to address particular themes: POPs, Lead, Mercury, and E-waste. In each of the meetings, baseline information was shared about each problem area and specific action plans were laid out to meet the SAICM 2020 objectives.

Raising public awareness and generation of new data about HG pollution in Albania

Eden Centre identified two hot spots with high levels of mercury contamination. At one of these sites, a former Soda-PVC plant, fish and human hair samples were taken and analyzed for mercury content. Results of these samples are forthcoming. The other site was used as the basis for a short investigative film produced by Eden Centre that was shown to local residents in two public events. Success of this film in raising awareness has spurred other NGOs to use the film at their events.

Raising awareness on mercury

Eco-Sense conducted several activities as part of its continuing efforts to inform the public about the dangers of mercury pollution. These included translating five informative fact sheets about mercury (how toxic it is, how it is used by the health care industry, how one becomes exposed to it through fish consumption, how to manage small spills, and what alternatives exist) into Macedonian. Eco-Sense also contracted with the Chemistry Institute to test 33 hair samples for mercury.

Awareness raising in schools on SAICM and chemicals

The NGO Association du Reseau Mediterraneen Pour le Developpement Durable (AREMEDD) organized a series of SAICM-related awareness generating activities throughout Tunisia from February to October 2010. These activities, which included the active participation of local NGOs, involved educating students about the dangers of lead in paint and mercury in used batteries, farmers about the adapting alternatives to pesticides, and representatives from the iron and steel industries about the impact of heavy metals on biodiversity.

Mapping toxics in surrounding of Phuket as a contribution to global debate about POPs in wastes

As an international tourist destination, Phuket currently attracts around two million visitors each year who contribute nearly 120 tons of solid waste each day. The Thai government, in violation of several environmental laws, operates a massive waste incinerator to treat this waste. No alternative or recycling system has ever been discussed.

Civil Society Participation in CONASQ – National Commission on Chemical Safety

In an effort to improve participation and collaboration among organizations and individuals concerning the SAICM Global Plan of Action, Associação de Proteção ao Meio Ambiente de Cianorte (APROMAC) pushed an explicit chemical implementation agenda at three consecutive meetings of Brazil's National Committee on Chemical Safety (CONSAQ). Additionally, they created a special webpage on their website focused solely on SAICM, which also provides monthly bulletins on SAICM issues.

Childrens’ Neurotoxicity in communities exposed to cement and other industries in Apaxco-Atotonilco

Centro de Diagnostico y Alternativas para Afectados por Tóxicos (CEDAAT) conducted research and public awareness activities to help communities in their demands against pollution coming from the ECOLTEC plant (a waste facility that produced fuel for cement kilns) in Mexico. ECOLTEC declared in an Environmental Impact Assessment that they would produce Volatile Organic Compounds, and the standard for cement kilns includes a series of dangerous heavy metals.

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