Published Date: Sep 16, 2012
IUCN GCC 2012 CALLS FOR A LEGALLY BINDING AGREEMENT FOR MERCURY (HG) USE & RELEASES CONTROL (SDPI PRESS RELEASE)
World leaders at IUCNs “Global Conservation Congress (GCC) 2012”, have adopted SDPI Motion and called upon government representatives of intergovernmental negotiating committee (INC) to support a legally binding treaty on Mercury with an objective to protect human health and the environment from hazardous and toxic Mercury.
The IUCN member’s assembly, the highest decision-making body of the IUCN, is a unique global environmental parliament of governments and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). This year over 10, 000 people, including 5000 conservative experts from 153 countries participated in GCC 2012 which concluded on September 15, 2012 at Jeju, Republic of Korea.
Dr. Mahmood. A. Khwaja, Senior Advisor, chemicals and sustainable industrial development, SDPI addressed the IUCN members assembly and presented motion on behalf of Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI). He agreed to the comments proposed on the submitted draft motion, by ministry of environment, Japan & Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Japan and the amendments proposed by Department of environment, food and rural affairs, UK. The resolution was adopted with an overwhelming support of 88% vote in favor whereas only 02% votes were casted against with about 10% abstentions.
The resolution calls for effective measures to reduce and where feasible eliminate mercury use and releases to the air, water and land and asks for a National Implementation Plan (NIP) to ensure effective development and implementation of treaty. The resolution also asks for adaptation of guidance for the identification and characterization of the contaminated sites and adherence to the agreed time table of the treaty with effective and enforceable treaty compliance provisions. The draft resolution also requests Director General IUCN to work with the IUCN Commissions and membership networks for the promotion of enhanced awareness regarding adverse health effects of mercury exposure and protection.
The adopted motion is part of SDPI’s efforts and support for global efforts to phase out toxic chemicals leading to their elimination with special attention given to mercury. Mercury is an extremely toxic substance which is a major threat to wildlife, ecosystem and human health at a global scale. It is also a major threat to fish which constitute an all-important nutritious component of human diet. Children are more at risk from mercury poisoning which affects their neurological development and brain. Mercury poisoning diminishes memory, attention, thinking and sight.