global treaty to protect human health and the environment from chemicals that remain intact in the environment for long periods. They he Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants is a become widely distributed geographically, accumulate in the fatty tissue of humans and wildlife, and have harmful impacts on human health or on the environment.
More About Stockholm Convention
- Exposure to Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) can lead to serious health effects including certain cancers, birth defects, dysfunctional immune and reproductive systems, greater susceptibility to disease and damages to the central and peripheral nervous systems.
- Given their long range transport, no one government acting alone can protect its citizens or its environment from POPs.
- In response to this global problem, the Stockholm Convention, which was adopted in 2001 and entered into force in 2004, requires its parties to take measures to eliminate or reduce the release of POPs into the environment.
Provisions of the Convention
- Prohibit and/or eliminate the production and use, as well as the import and export, of the intentionally produced POPs (Annex A) and reduce or eliminate releases from unintentionally produced POPs (Annex B).
- Ensure that stockpiles and wastes consisting of, containing or contaminated with POPs are managed safely and in an environmentally sound manner (Annex C).
- The Convention also requires that wastes containing POPs are transported across international boundaries taking into account relevant international rules, standards and guidelines.
- The Convention provides for detailed procedures for the listing of new POPs in Annexes A, B and/or C.
List of POPs in the Stockholm Convention
- Aldrin-The main adverse effect of Aldrin and Dieldrin is in relationship to the central nervous system. The accumulated levels of Dieldrin in the body were believed to lead to convulsions. Besides that other symptoms were also reported like headaches, nausea and vomiting, anorexia, muscle twitching and myoclonic jerking and EEG distortions.
- Chlordane– The lethal effects of chlordane on fish and birds vary according to the species, but tests have shown that it can kill mallard ducks, bobwhite quail, and pink shrimp. Chlordane may affect the human immune system and is classified as a possible human carcinogen.
- Chlordecone– Chlordecone is highly persistent in the environment, has a high potential for bioaccumulation and biomagnification. It is classified as a possible human carcinogen and is very toxic to aquatic organisms.
- Dicofol– Prolonged or repeated exposure to dicofol can cause skin irritation, hyperstimulation of nerve transmissions along nerve axons. Dicofol is highly toxic in fish, aquatic invertebrates, algae and in birds is tied to eggshell thinning and reduced fertility.
- Heptachlor– Laboratory tests have also shown high doses of heptachlor to be fatal to mink, rats, and rabbits, with lower doses causing adverse behavioral changes and reduced reproductive success.