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A Toxics-Free Future

Highlights Front Roll

New Catalyst Will Reduce Environmental Harm from PVC Plants
Contaminated Sites and Their Management
Groundbreaking Book Teaches Kids about Lead Hazards
Governments Agree to Set Legal Limits on Lead in Paint in Africa
International Anti-Fracking Summit – Not Here, Not Anywhere
International Right-to-Know Conference Held in Prague

中文 (Chinese)

(Beijing, China) A new study on lead in decorative paints sold in China released today by Insight Explorer and IPEN finds that more than half of the paints analyzed exceed Chinese lead regulations. Moreover, even when paint brands offer paint with lower levels of lead, consumers have no way of knowing it because very few of 141 paint cans analyzed in the study carried information about lead content on the label.

“The health impacts of lead exposure on young children’s brains are lifelong, irreversible and untreatable,” said Pan Qingan, Project Director of China Heavy Metal Pollution Map. “We are limiting our children and our nation’s future intellectual development even though safe and effective alternatives are already in use and widely available in China. We must reduce this critical source of lead exposure to young children.”

Environment & Public Health Groups Applaud as Sierra Leone Rejects Deal

Beirut, Lebanon. Seattle, USA. January 12, 2016. Sierra Leone just announced that they want no part of a reported deal that would send Lebanese household waste to the West African nation. Last month, the Government of Lebanon approved a plan to export many tons of household trash from Beirut and Mount Lebanon to an African or Middle-Eastern country. The global dumping plan has been denounced by local and international waste experts as not only likely illegal but also environmentally irresponsible.

Despite the opposition, Agriculture Minister Akram Chehayeb, chair of the ministerial committee in charge of the waste management plan, announced that the government has agreed to contract two international companies in accordance with local and international laws to export Lebanon's trash -- Howa BV from the Netherlands and Chinook Urban Mining International of the United Kingdom.

Former IPEN Co-Chair (and current Senior Advisor) is featured in this article from Verandah Magazine:

From a tiny village in the Northern Rivers to representing Civil Society at the UN, Dr Mariann Lloyd-Smith has been fighting against chemical pollution for decades – and now, she’s pleased to report, PFOA (Teflon) has been nominated for an international ban.

At the time, it seemed like a rural idyll. Move with your child from a polluted inner city to beautiful small acreage, build a home in the bush, and live a more natural lifestyle. “That’s what I thought, anyway,” says long-term environmental campaigner and now Ballina resident and global citizen Mariann Lloyd-Smith.

Dr. Geiser has been presented with the “Frank Hatch Environmental Health Leadership Award” from the Environmental Health Strategy Center (EHSC) in Maine, United States. The award marks his outstanding lifetime contributions to the field of environmental health regionally and nationally.

Participants of UNEP workshop agreed that African countries should adopt a lead limit for all paints of 90 parts per million.

en français

Addis Ababa, 4 December 2015 - Government officials and stakeholders from 15 African countries joined by their counterparts from around the world at a workshop jointly organized by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the International Persistent Organic Pollutants Elimination Network (IPEN) in Addis Ababa agreed to cooperate to phase out the use of lead in paint by 2020.

The release of lead into the environment poses significant risks to human health and the environment. World Health Organization lists lead exposure as one of the top ten environmental health threats globally. No level of lead exposure is safe for people, and children are especially vulnerable. Paints that contain lead additives pose a risk of lead poisoning, especially for young children.

On November 25th, Centre de Recherche et d’Education pour le Développement / Research and Education Centre for Development (CREPD), IPEN’s Regional Hub for Francophone Africa, held a stakeholders workshop in Yaoundé, Cameroon and publicly released their new paint analyses results. The paints had been tested for levels of lead content. Representatives from industry, government ministries, pediatricians, academia from the faculty of medicine, UNIDO (the United Nations Industrial Development Organization), NGOs, and the media attended the workshop.

Eco-Accord, IPEN Regional Hub for Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia (EECCA), prepared an overview of information from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and EECCA countries about the need to report emissions and releases from obsolete pesticide stockpiles through pollutant release and transfer register (PRTR) systems in EECCA countries.

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