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22 September 2017

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PRESS RELEASE: 

New treaty effectiveness will depend on adequacy of data to be collected, say NGOs  

Geneva, Switzerland


Prior to the start of the first Conference of Parties (COP1), the Zero Mercury Working Group (ZMWG) welcomed the entry into force of the Minamata Convention. 

“While there are alternatives to mercury, there are no alternatives to global cooperation,” said Michael Bender, international ZMWG coordinator. “We applaud the world’s governments for committing to curtail this dangerous neurotoxin.”

The First Conference of the Parties will take place from 24 to 29 September 2017 in Geneva, Switzerland.  Over 1,000 delegates and around 50 ministers are expected to assemble in Geneva to celebrate and lay the groundwork for the treaty’s overall effectiveness.
 
During the prior negotiations, the Intergovernmental Negotiation Committee (INC) approved many of the forms and guidance that the Convention specifies must be adopted at COP 1, which are needed for the swift and smooth launch and running of the Convention.  These include guidance documents on identifying stocks, determining best available technologies and reducing mercury use in small scale gold mining; as well as forms for trade procedures and for exemptions from certain deadlines.

“These INC approvals were achieved by consensus after considerable deliberations, and are ready for approval without further debate,” said Satish Sinha, Toxics Link India.

Among the most critical open issues to be discussed at COP1 are the reporting requirements, which will provide critical information on both the global mercury situation and the effectiveness of the Convention in achieving mercury reductions.   Particularly critical to collect will be data on mercury production and trade, which can change significantly in a short period of time.

 “Countries will not have readily available information about production and trade in bordering countries or within their region, unless there is frequent reporting under the Convention,” said David Lennett, Senior Attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council “Many borders between countries are “porous,” and where a significant portion of mercury trade is informal/illegal.   Good data on legal trade flows will enable actions to address illegal trade, all of which has a huge impact on artisanal and small scale gold mining, the largest source of mercury pollution globally.

Mercury is a global pollutant that travels long distances. Its most toxic form – methylmercury - accumulates in large predatory fish and is taken up in our bodies through eating fish, with the worst impacts on babies in utero

For more information, see:

http://www.mercuryconvention.org

www.zeromercury.org

Contacts:


Elena Lymberidi-Settimo, Project Coordinator ‘Zero Mercury Campaign’, European Environmental Bureau, ZMWG International Coordinator
T: +32 2 2891301,  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it "> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Michael Bender, ZMWG International Coordinator, T: +1 802 917 8222,   This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it "> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

For information on reporting, please contact David Lennett, Natural Resources Defense Council, T:  +1 202 460 8517   This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it "> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

For further information, please contact:

*The Zero Mercury Working Group (ZMWG) is an international coalition of over 95 public interest environmental and health non-governmental organizations from more than 50 countries from around the world formed in 2005 by the European Environmental Bureau and the Mercury Policy Project.  ZMWG strives for zero supply, demand, and emissions of mercury from all anthropogenic sources, with the goal of reducing mercury in the global environment to a minimum.  Our mission is to advocate and support the adoption and implementation of a legally binding instrument which contains mandatory obligations to eliminate where feasible, and otherwise minimize, the global supply and trade of mercury, the global demand for mercury, anthropogenic releases of mercury to the environment, and human and wildlife exposure to mercury.



 

Home Press Releases European NGOs call on dentists to ban mercury use on children immediately
European NGOs call on dentists to ban mercury use on children immediately PDF Print
Wednesday, 26 April 2017 13:36

[EEB] - [HEAL]-[HCWH]-[WAMFD]

 

Brussels, 26 April 2017

European NGOs call on dentists to ban mercury use on children immediately

European NGOs are calling on dentists to implement immediately the upcoming ban on mercury dental fillings for children and pregnant women.

Yesterday, the EU Council adopted the revised mercury regulation, including a partial ban on mercury in dentistry on the back of huge support from the European Parliament who voted in favour of the proposals 663 to 8. The proposals, supported by the Parliament, included a partial ban on amalgam in dentistry as it is 50 per cent mercury.

However, the ban on use of amalgam in children under 15, pregnant and breastfeeding women does not come into effect until 1 July 2018.

We are now calling on this ban to be applied by dentists immediately.

“With the ban to protect Europe’s children coming in one year, we call on Europe’s dentists to start observing the ban now,” says Charlie Brown, president of the World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry.  “21st century dentistry is mercury-free dentistry and Europe’s children deserve nothing less.”

“The EU decision for a partial amalgam ban for vulnerable populations acknowledges clearly the environmental danger from the mercury use in dentistry” says Elena Lymberidi-Settimo of the European Environment Bureau.  “Dentists should apply it straight away also to protect children and other vulnerable people. It is positive that there is movement away from mercury in dentistry.  The requested 2020 review on the feasibility of a total ban on mercury by 2030, although quite late, it still sends a clear message that we are heading towards the end of dental mercury.”

“The new law is a wake-up call to the parents of Europe,” says Philippe Vandendaele of Health Care Without Harm Europe.  “Every parent of a child under 15 should, from this day forward, insist on mercury-free dentistry for their child, as should every pregnant and breast-feeding woman.”

“The Member State governments should instruct dentists to stop amalgam use on Europe’s children immediately rather than waiting until July next year. Dentistry is a major source of environmental mercury pollution, which is causing a child brain drain in Europe and elsewhere,” says Génon K. Jensen, Health and Environmental Alliance (HEAL).

For further information:

Elena Lymberidi-Settimo, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it "> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ;

Philippe Vandendaele, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it "> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ;  

Genon Jensen, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it "> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ;

Charlie Brown, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it "> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it