**** LATEST NEWS! ****

22 September 2017

View this email in your browser

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 End mercury use in dentistry by 2022, civil society challenge European Union
End mercury use in dentistry by 2022, civil society challenge European Union PDF Print
Monday, 04 December 2017 10:51

4 December 2017

PRESS RELEASE: 

End mercury use in dentistry by 2022, civil society challenge European Union

A call to phase out mercury use in dentistry by 2022 in the European Union has been made by health and environmental NGOs.

Mercury is currently used in dental amalgam in fillings and is easily replaceable. Mercury is a dangerous neurotoxin which can damage the nervous, renal and cardiovascular systems.
 
Given that dental amalgam is 50 per cent mercury, the Minamata Convention on Mercury requires each participating nation to reduce its use.
 
In 2017, the European Union adopted an amalgam ban for children under the age of 15 and for pregnant and breastfeeding women from July 2018.  The new rule requires also each Member State to set out a national plan to phasing down amalgam use and requires the European Commission to make a recommendation in 2020 on whether to phase out amalgam entirely.
 
The call to set a date to end all use in dentistry in the European Union was made as part of the Berlin Declaration to End Amalgam Use in Europe by 2022 at a two day civil society summit on 21-22 November, in Berlin.
 
The two-day summit drew leadership from dental societies, academia, national, European and international environmental, health and women’s rights NGOs, as well as EU and German stakeholders and decision makers.  
           
Stefan Eck, German MEP, who shepherded the partial amalgam ban through the European Parliament, praised the Berlin Declaration:
"It was important to participate in this summit in Berlin. I will try my best to work with civil societies to accomplish the goal of an amalgam-free dentistry in Europe."
 
Charlie Brown of World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry, who organized the summit, said:
“The Berlin Declaration parallels similar civil society goals for Africa and Asia: the Abuja Declaration (2014) and the Dhaka Declaration (2015) respectively.” 
 
Elena Lymberidi-Settimo of the European Environmental Bureau (EEB), which hosted the first European conference to end amalgam a decade ago, said:
“The Berlin Declaration highlights a ten-year campaign by the EEB to bring mercury-free dentistry to this entire continent. It’s now time Member States roll up their sleeves and pave the way.”
 
Florian Schulze of IG Umwelt Zahn Medizin, which hosted the Summit and launched a national campaign, said:
“Germany can end amalgam sooner, in 2019.  Amalgam use is now very low, and dentists are ready for the switch. All we must do is make changes in the insurance system that are fair to dentists and fair to consumers.”
 
 
Philippe Vandendaele of Health Care Without Harm-Europe, said:
“We co-led the campaign to end mercury in the other two medical devices, thermometers and sphygmomanometers, and now Europe needs to tackle the job on the third one, dental amalgam.”
 
Dr Silvia Pleschka of Women Engage for a Common Future, said:
“The protection enshrined for children, pregnant women and breastfeeding women needs to be extended across the board, in the EU and beyond.”

ENDS

Notes for editors

Berlin Declaration, https://mercuryfreedentistry.files.wordpress.com/2017/11/berlin-declaration-to-end-amalgam-use-in-europe-by-2022.pdf
 
EU Mercury regulation 2017,  http://data.consilium.europa.eu/doc/document/PE-4-2017-REV-1/en/pdf
 
EEB-WAMFD-Memo on Technical advantages of mercury free dentistry, May 2016
 
Abuja Declaration, https://mercuryfreedentistry.files.wordpress.com/2015/04/abuja-declaration-for-mercury-free-dentistry-for-africa.pdf
 
Dhaka Declaration, http://cephed.org.np/pdf/31421052006.pdf

National German Campaign launched: #OpenYourMouthAgainstAmalgam http://ig-umwelt-zahnmedizin.de/mund-auf-gegen-amalgam/

For further information, please contact:
Elena Lymberidi-Settimo,
Project Manager ‘Zero Mercury Campaign’,
European Environmental Bureau,
0032 (0)2 289 1301
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
 
Ian Carey
Communications Manager
European Environmental Bureau
0032 (0)2 289 1309
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
Chemicals Policy Advisor
Health Care Without Harm (HCWH) Europe
 0032 (0) 2503 0481
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
 
Aidan Long
Press & Communications Officer
HCWH Europe
0032 (0) 2503 0481 / 0032 (0)465 100 940
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
 
Johanna Hausmann
Project Management Chemicals and Health
Women Engage for a Common Future
tel +49 173 8010040
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
 
Florian Schulze
Project Manager
IG Umwelt Zahn Medizin
0049(0)1781812729 or 0049(0)3055232755
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
World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry
Attorney and President
Washington, USA,
[1] 202 544 6333,
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
 

The European Environmental Bureau (EEB) is Europe's largest network of environmental citizens’ organisations, standing for environmental justice, sustainable development and participatory democracy. Our experts work on climate change, biodiversity, circular economy, air, water, soil, chemical pollution, as well as policies on industry, energy, agriculture, product design and waste prevention. We are also active on overarching issues as sustainable development, good governance, participatory democracy and the rule of law in Europe and beyond.

We have over 140 members in over 30 countries.

EC register for interest representatives: Identification number 06798511314-27

International non-profit association - Association internationale sans but lucratif (AISBL)