In the spotlight

Appointment of the new Executive Secretary

The Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions is pleased to announce that the United Nations Secretary-General, Mr. Ban Ki-moon, has recently appointed Dr. Rolph Payet, Minister for Environment and Energy, Seychelles, as its new Executive Secretary.

Dr. Payet has a Doctorate in Environmental Science, degrees at master level in Integrated Coastal Zone Management, Business Administration (MBA) and Applied Environmental Economics, and an honours degree in Biochemistry.

Appointment of the new Executive Secretary

Appointment of the new Executive Secretary

The Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions is pleased to announce that the United Nations Secretary-General, Mr. Ban Ki-moon, has recently appointed Dr. Rolph Payet, Minister for Environment and Energy, Seychelles, as its new Executive Secretary.

Dr. Payet has a Doctorate in Environmental Science, degrees at master level in Integrated Coastal Zone Management, Business Administration (MBA) and Applied Environmental Economics, and an honours degree in Biochemistry.

In addition to having been the Seychelles’ Chief Negotiator for the Basel Convention, the Montreal Protocol and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, Dr. Payet also established important multi-stakeholder platforms, such as the Global Island Partnership (GLISPA) and and co-chaired the International Coral Reef Initiative. He was Lead Author for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Third and Fourth Assessments and was elected as Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society (FRGS) in 2007, in recognition of his contributions to marine research. He established the first university in Seychelles in 2009, and is its present ProChancellor. He also holds an associate professorship at the University of Linnaeus in Sweden.

Dr. Payet will take up his new duties in Geneva on 6 October 2014.

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Announcements

Call for applications by 31 December 2014.

Download the communication and application form

Consultancy announcement: illegal traffic and trade

 

The Secretariat is pleased to announce the launch of a new online tool for finding its many joint technical and scientific publications. The use of an integrated search engine combines publications from the Basel, Rotterdam, and Stockholm Convention processes for the first time, and enables interested browsers to search by keyword, life cycle phase, or chemical/waste name under the Conventions.

The tool aims to better facilitate the sharing of key information about sustainable chemicals management amongst stakeholders, ease the work of Parties and Observers to the three Conventions, is the latest in the ongoing process of harmonisation and improvement of knowledge management within the Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam, and Stockholm Conventions.

New Tool Goes Live for Finding Technical and Scientific Publications

The Secretariat is pleased to announce the launch of a new online tool for finding its many joint technical and scientific publications. The use of an integrated search engine combines publications from the Basel, Rotterdam, and Stockholm Convention processes for the first time, and enables interested browsers to search by keyword, life cycle phase, or chemical/waste name under the Conventions.

The tool aims to better facilitate the sharing of key information about sustainable chemicals management amongst stakeholders, ease the work of Parties and Observers to the three Conventions, is the latest in the ongoing process of harmonisation and improvement of knowledge management within the Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam, and Stockholm Conventions.

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Highlights

Transmission of National Implementation Plans

New Parties to the Convention

Invitations sent for 2015 triple COPs

Invitations sent for 2015 triple COPs

Provisional agendas, information for delegates, registration information, and Science Fair details now available on the Synergies website.

Invitations sent for 2015 triple COPs

Invitations sent for 2015 triple COPs
 
Science Fair will accompany the COPs, Geneva, 7-9th May, 2015

Science Fair will accompany the COPs, Geneva, 7-9th May, 2015

The Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam, and Stockholm Conventions is pleased to announce it will stage a Science Fair, reflecting the COP Theme of “From Science to Action: Working for a Safer Tomorrow, from 7-9th May, 2015.

Science Fair will accompany the COPs, Geneva, 7-9th May, 2015

Science Fair will accompany the COPs, Geneva, 7-9th May, 2015
The Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam, and Stockholm Conventions is pleased to announce it will stage a Science Fair, reflecting the COP Theme of “From Science to Action: Working for a Safer Tomorrow, from  7-9th May, 2015.
Webinars to focus on 2015 COPs, Endosulfan, E-waste, National Reporting, and NIP updating

Webinars to focus on 2015 COPs, Endosulfan, E-waste, National Reporting, and NIP updating

Sign up now to take advantage of opportunities to learn more about these key subjects.

Webinars to focus on 2015 COPs, Endosulfan, E-waste, National Reporting, and NIP updating

Webinars to focus on 2015 COPs, Endosulfan, E-waste, National Reporting, and NIP updating
 

Amendment listing the flame retardant, hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD), in Annex A enters into force

On 26 November 2014, one year after notification, the amendment listing HBCD in Annex A to the Stockholm Convention entered into force for most parties.  

Amendment listing the flame retardant, hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD), in Annex A enters into force

The official notification of HBCD has been communicated, by the Depositary/Treaty Section of the Office of Legal Affairs in New York, to all Parties on 26 November 2013.

The notification is now available in English and in French

The HBCD amendment will enter into force for Parties on 26 November 2014, except for those Parties which might opt out, or for those Parties which had submitted the declaration for opting-in to any amendments, at the time they submitted their instruments of ratification of the Convention.

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Activities

Syndicate
Briefing on Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions COPs in 2015

The online briefings aim at providing parties, observers and other stakeholders with an overview of the issues that will be discussed during the meetings of the conferences of the parties to the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions, to be held in Geneva, from 4-15 May 2015.

Briefing on Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions COPs in 2015

Briefing on Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions COPs in 2015
 
Updating National Implementation Plans under the Stockholm Convention: priority setting for the Environmentally Sound Management of POPs

The objectives of these sessions are to provide an overview of the methodology for priority assessment and objective setting in the NIP updating process, share and exchange of information on the available guidance to develop and update NIPs and provide information on training and capacity building activities.

Updating National Implementation Plans under the Stockholm Convention: priority setting for the Environmentally Sound Management of POPs

Updating National Implementation Plans under the Stockholm Convention: priority setting for the Environmentally Sound Management of POPs
 
Growing Coffee without Endosulfan: experiences with cultural controls for Coffee Berry Borer (CBB)

This is the first of three webinars looking at Integrated Pest Management practices to control the important Coffee Berry Borer (CBB) pest, as an alternative to using the highly hazardous pesticide Endosulfan. This webinar aims to share practical experiences of coffee farmers, in managing CBB with field hygiene measures (often called cultural controls).

Growing Coffee without Endosulfan: experiences with cultural controls for Coffee Berry Borer (CBB)

Growing Coffee without Endosulfan: experiences with cultural controls for Coffee Berry Borer (CBB)
 
Regional Centres meet to enhance cooperation and coordination

The Annual joint meeting of Regional Centres under the Basel and Stockholm Conventions takes place in Geneva on 27-28 November 2014.

Regional Centres meet to enhance cooperation and coordination

Regional Centres meet to enhance cooperation and coordination
 
Bureaux approve the schedule of work for the 2015 COPs

At their joint meeting on 11-12 November, the bureaux successfully laid foundations for the forthcoming COPs. A draft version of the schedule is now available.

Bureaux approve the schedule of work for the 2015 COPs

Bureaux approve the schedule of work for the 2015 COPs
 
Joint meeting of the bureaux of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions COPs
The bureaux will meet from 11 to 12 November 2014 in Geneva, Switzerland to discuss preparations for the 2015 COPs.

Joint meeting of the bureaux of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions COPs

Joint meeting of the bureaux of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions COPs
The bureaux will meet from 11 to 12 November 2014 in Geneva, Switzerland to discuss preparations for the 2015 COPs.
The October  issue of the BRS Technical Assistance Newsletter is now available

The Technical Assistance Newsletter provides information on the past, current and upcoming technical assistance activities.

The October issue of the BRS Technical Assistance Newsletter is now available

The October  issue of the BRS Technical Assistance Newsletter is now available
 
Tenth meeting of the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee to be held in Rome in October 2014
The tenth meeting of the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee (POPRC-10) will be held from 27 to 30 October 2014 in Rome, Italy.

Tenth meeting of the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee to be held in Rome in October 2014

Tenth meeting of the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee to be held in Rome in October 2014
 
Kerstin Stendahl calls for increased awareness & safer alternatives to unsound chemicals

Collective global action agreed to in our multilateral environmental agreements coupled with implementation supported by the Global Environment Facility is helping to reduce threats posed by the use of chemicals.


Kerstin Stendahl calls for increased awareness & safer alternatives to unsound chemicals

Kerstin Stendahl calls for increased awareness & safer alternatives to unsound chemicals

Collective global action agreed to in our multilateral environmental agreements coupled with implementation supported by the Global Environment Facility is helping to reduce threats posed by the use of chemicals.

“The Month of Reporting” opens with special series of webinars on National Reporting
A series of webinars aim to provide in-depth guidance to Parties to the Stockholm Convention on how to submit their national reports.

“The Month of Reporting” opens with special series of webinars on National Reporting

“The Month of Reporting” opens with special series of webinars on National Reporting

A series of webinars aim to provide in-depth guidance to Parties to the Stockholm Convention on how to submit their national reports.

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Upcoming meetings

Ninth meeting of the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee (POPRC.9)
Rome, Italy, from 14 to 18 October 2013

Ninth meeting of the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee (POPRC.9)

Rome, Italy, from 14 to 18 October 2013


Venue: FAO Headquarters, Viale delle Terme di Caracalla, 00153 Rome, Italy.

Highlights: The ninth meeting of the POPs Review Committee (POPRC.9) will be held from 14 to 18 October 2013, with pre-meetings on Sunday, 13 October 2013, at FAO Headquarters in Rome, Italy. In addition, on Sunday, 20 October 2013, a joint meeting with the Rotterdam Convention’s Chemical Review Committee (CRC) will be held. This joint meeting was agreed to by the bureaux of the Committees and the conferences of the Parties to the Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions, at their sixth meetings held from 28 April to 10 May 2013. The purpose of the joint meeting is for scientific information exchange between the members of the Committees.

The Committee will have before it proposals for listing decabromodiphenyl ether (commercial mixture, c-decaBDE) and dicofol in Annexes A, B and/or C to the Stockholm Convention. The Committee will also review, among other things, the draft risk management evaluation on chlorinated naphthalenes and hexachlorobutadiene and the draft risk profile on pentachlorophenol and its salts and esters. We would like to remind you that if you are planning to provide new or additional data on any chemical at the meeting, you should also provide a copy of the full reference documentation to ensure data acceptability.

The Committee’s meetings are open to observers in accordance with the rules of procedure of the Conference of the Parties and the terms of reference of the POPs Review Committee. To participate as an observer, please read the information for admission of observers and submit the completed registration form before 30 August 2013 by fax or e-mail to the Secretariat.

First joint meeting of the Chemical Review Committee and the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee, 20 October 2013

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Recent meetings

December 2014
Sub-regional workshop on illegal traffic of hazardous wastes, including PCBs and other wastes
Barranquilla, Colombia, 10 - 12 December 2014

Sub-regional workshop on illegal traffic of hazardous wastes, including PCBs and other wastes

Barranquilla, Colombia, 10 - 12 December 2014


Background: Under the Basel Convention, each Party is required to take appropriate legal administrative and other measures to implement and enforce the provisions of the Convention, including appropriate national/domestic legislation to prevent and punish illegal traffic (art. 4.4 and 9.5). The Secretariat’s activities pertaining to national legislation, illegal traffic and enforcement support the effective implementation of these requirements and hence the achievement of fundamental objectives of the Convention.

COP-11 adopted two decisions of particular relevance to the objective of preventing and combating illegal traffic. By Decision BC-11/8: Committee for Administering the Mechanism for Promoting Implementation and Compliance of the Basel Convention, COP-11 established ENFORCE. By Decision BC-11/10: National legislation, notifications, enforcement of the Convention and efforts to combat illegal traffic, COP-11 invited Parties and requested the Secretariat to undertake a number of activities aimed at preventing and combating illegal traffic.

In their decisions on enhancing cooperation and coordination among the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions, the three COPs list “combating illegal traffic and trade in hazardous chemicals and wastes” as a specific area for enhanced cooperation and coordination among the conventions.

At the third and fourth meetings, in its decisions SC-3/7 and SC-4/8 respectively, the Conference of the Parties to the Stockholm Convention requested the Secretariat to undertake training and other capacity building activities to assist developing countries and countries with economies in transition in implementing the Basel Convention technical guidelines on POPs waste, including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). These as well as a number of documents and guidance on inventory of PCBs and environmentally sound management of PCBs, have been prepared by the Secretariat.

Over the years, the Secretariat carried out a number of training activities to support parties in preventing and combating illegal traffic in hazardous wastes and other wastes, including more recently two workshops that focused on the prosecution of illegal traffic. The first workshop for prosecutors took place in Bratislava, the Slovak Republic, on 26-27 June 2012 for countries of Central and Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia. The workshop for Central and South America took place on 28-29 August 2013 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Furthermore, the Secretariat also provided support to Parties on the environmentally sound management of PCBs and POPs waste in a series of regional workshops that took place in 2009 and 2010.

Sub-regional workshop on updating NIPs and POPs wastes under the Stockholm Convention
Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, 8 - 10 December 2014

Sub-regional workshop on updating NIPs and POPs wastes under the Stockholm Convention

Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, 8 - 10 December 2014


Background: The addition of chemicals to Annexes A, B or C of the Convention triggers the need for most parties to review and update the national implementation plans (NIPs) in accordance with decision SC-1/12. In 2009, nine new chemicals were added to the Annexes of the Convention and in 2011, endosulfan was added to Annex A of the Convention.

The process of reviewing and updating the NIPs can be challenging for parties that lack adequate resources and technical capacity. Parties have expressed the need for assistance in that regard and in particular in addressing newly listed POPs that are widely used for industrial purposes and are contained in products and articles. In accordance with decision SC-4/9 that requested the Secretariat to identify any additional guidance that might be required to assist parties in their development and implementation of the Convention, a set of guidance documents has been developed to assist parties in reviewing and updating their NIPs with information relating to newly listed POPs. These documents should assist parties in developing strategies to restrict and eliminate the newly listed POPs by providing guidance on establishing inventories, controlling the import of new POPs, monitoring the presence of products and articles containing new POPs, selecting best available techniques and best environmental practices for the management of new POPs.

While updating their NIPs, parties should also evaluate effectiveness of the action plans and strategies included in the original NIP. Review of the adopted strategies and measures to reduce or eliminate releases of Annex C POPs will require parties to elaborate updated release inventories in order to evaluate whether the unintentional releases actually decreased.

POPs wastes are listed as wastes in Annexes I and VIII of the Basel Convention. The updated general technical guidelines for the environmentally sound management of wastes consisting of, containing or contaminated with POPs was adopted by the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Basel Convention by its decision VIII/16. Further, the COP mandated by its decision BC-11/3, to update the general technical guidelines and the preparation or updating of specific technical guidelines with regard to the chemicals listed in Annexes A, B and C to the Stockholm Convention by its decisions SC-4/10, SC-4/11, SC-4/12, SC-4/13, SC-4/14, SC-4/15, SC-4/16, SC-4/17, SC-4/18, SC-5/3, and SC-6/13 of the Conference of the Parties to the Stockholm Convention.

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November 2014
Meeting of the Global Coordination Group for the Global Monitoring Plan for POPs - 2014
Geneva, Switzerland, 10 - 12 November 2014

Meeting of the Global Coordination Group for the Global Monitoring Plan for POPs - 2014

Geneva, Switzerland, 10 - 12 November 2014


Venue: International Environment House, Geneva, Switzerland.

Highlights: The members of the Global Coordination Group for the Global Monitoring Plan (GMP) for POPs met in Geneva, Switzerland from 10 to 12 November 2014. Among the issues under discussion in view of closing the second phase of the GMP, agreement on the final steps and timetable towards finalizing the five regional monitoring reports, developing conclusions and recommendations to be considered at COP-7, defining the approach, steps and timelines towards the development of the global monitoring report and identifying the GMP coordination group representative to the effectiveness evaluation committee were among the major highlights.

The five regional monitoring reports will be made available for consideration at COP-7. Monitoring data contained in the regional monitoring reports will, where possible and appropriate, be made available through the GMP data warehouse by March 2015. The global monitoring report will be developed on the base of the five regional monitoring reports by the coordination group for the global monitoring plan, with the assistance of the Secretariat and invited experts, by January 2016, and will be made available for consideration by the Effectiveness Evaluation Committee. While regional reports include data for PFOS in water and information on the regional transport where available, the assessment of PFOS water data and LRT considerations will be considered from a global perspective in the global monitoring report. A draft outline of the global monitoring report has been agreed by the coordination group as a basis for the future work.

New information has or will soon become available for inclusion in the GMP guidance document. The guidance will be updated to include up-to-date reference to HBCD, specification of the criteria for the selection of donors of human samples, and a revised water chapter to include more practical details on sampling for PFOS.

The conclusions and recommendations of the global coordination group are set out in the meeting report.

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Fifth Expert Group Meeting on DDT
Geneva, Switzerland, 10 - 12 November 2014

Fifth Expert Group Meeting on DDT

Geneva, Switzerland, 10 - 12 November 2014


Venue: International Environment House-1 (IEH-1), 11-13 chemin des Anémones, 1219 Châtelaine, Switzerland. 

Background: DDT is listed in Annex B of the Stockholm Convention with its uses in disease vector control as an acceptable purpose in accordance with Part II of Annex B of the Convention. 

The DDT expert group is established in consultation with the World Health Organization to assess, every two years, the available scientific, technical, environmental and economic information related to production and use of DDT.

The sixth meeting of the COP, concluded that countries that are relying on DDT for disease vector control may need to continue such use until locally safe, effective, affordable and environmentally sound alternatives are available for a sustainable transition away from DDT. It also decided to evaluate the continued need for DDT for disease vector control on the basis of available scientific, technical, environmental and economic information, including that provided by the DDT expert group at its seventh meeting, with the objective of accelerating the identification and development of locally appropriate, cost-effective and safe alternatives.

Meeting objectives: To facilitate the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Stockholm Convention in its evaluation of continued need for DDT for disease vector control.

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October 2014
Tenth meeting of the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee (POPRC.10)
Rome, Italy, 27 - 30 October 2014

Tenth meeting of the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee (POPRC.10)

Rome, Italy, 27 - 30 October 2014


Venue: FAO Headquarters, Viale delle Terme di Caracalla, 00153 Rome, Italy.

Highlights: The tenth meeting of the POPs Review Committee (POPRC.10) will be held from 27 to 30 October 2014, with pre-meetings on Sunday, 26 October 2014, at FAO Headquarters in Rome, Italy.

The Committee will review the draft risk management evaluation on pentachlorophenol and its salts and esters, draft risk profile on decabromodiphenyl ether, and the proposal for listing dicofol in Annex A, B, and/or C to the Stockholm Convention. The Committee will also consider the draft reports prepared for the evaluation of perfluorooctane sulfonic acid, its salts and perfluorooctane sulfonyl fluoride pursuant to paragraphs 5 and 6 of part III of Annex B to the Stockholm Convention.

The Committee’s meetings are open to observers in accordance with the rules of procedure of the Conference of the Parties and the terms of reference of the POPs Review Committee. To participate as an observer, please read the information for admission of observers and submit the completed registration form before 29 August 2014 by e-mail to the Secretariat.

The pre-meetings for the Committee members and intersessional working groups will be held on Sunday, 26 October 2014 at the same venue. Please download the tentative schedule of the pre-meetings.

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August 2014
Regional workshop on updating national implementation plans and reporting under Stockholm Convention
Montevideo, Uruguay, 5 - 8 August 2014

Regional workshop on updating national implementation plans and reporting under Stockholm Convention

Montevideo, Uruguay, 5 - 8 August 2014


Background: The addition of chemicals to Annexes A, B or C of the Convention triggers the need for most parties to review and update the national implementation plans (NIPs) in accordance with decision SC-1/12. In 2009, nine new chemicals were added to the Annexes of the Convention and in 2011, endosulfan was added to Annex A of the Convention.

The process of reviewing and updating the NIPs can be challenging for parties that lack adequate resources and technical capacity. Parties have expressed the need for assistance in that regard and in particular in addressing newly listed POPs that are widely used for industrial purposes and are contained in products and articles. In accordance with decision SC-4/9 that requested the Secretariat to identify any additional guidance that might be required to assist parties in their development and implementation of the Convention, a set of guidance documents has been developed to assist parties in reviewing and updating their NIPs with information relating to newly listed POPs. These documents should assist parties in developing strategies to restrict and eliminate the newly listed POPs by providing guidance on establishing inventories, controlling the import of new POPs, monitoring the presence of products and articles containing new POPs, selecting best available techniques and best environmental practices for the management of new POPs.

While updating their NIPs in order to address the newly listed POPs parties should also evaluate effectiveness of the action plans and strategies included in the original NIP. Reviewing of the adopted strategies and measures to reduce or eliminate releases of Annex C POPs, will require to elaborate updated release inventories in order to evaluate whether the unintentional releases actually decreased.

Parties to the Stockholm Convention are also required to transmit national reports every four years to the Secretariat of the Stockholm Convention. The reports contain qualitative information on the measures taken to implement the Convention and on the effectiveness of such measures. Additionally, Parties are required to report quantitative information which includes statistical data on the production, import and export of the chemicals listed in Annexes A and B, among others. Based on these obligations, the Secretariat has developed electronic reporting systems, one for each convention, where Parties can report directly online.

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July 2014
Sub-regional workshop on reporting obligations under the Basel and Stockholm Conventions
Dakar, Senegal, 6 - 8 July 2014

Sub-regional workshop on reporting obligations under the Basel and Stockholm Conventions

Dakar, Senegal, 6 - 8 July 2014


Background: Parties to the Basel Convention are required to transmit to the Secretariat, at the end of each calendar year, their respective national reports pursuant to Article 13, paragraph 3. The national report questionnaire contains qualitative and quantitative information. This is a mechanism that allows Parties to share information with each other and it also indicates the level of the implementation of the Basel Convention. The focal points of the Basel Convention, at the national level, are responsible for receiving and submitting information as provided for in Articles 13 and 16.

Parties to the Stockholm Convention are to transmit national reports to the Secretariat of the Stockholm Convention every four years. The reports contain qualitative information on the measures taken to implement the Convention and on the effectiveness of such measures. Additionally, Parties are required to report quantitative information which includes statistical data on the production, import and export of the chemicals listed in Annexes A and B, among others.

Based on these obligations, the Secretariat has developed electronic reporting systems, one for each convention, where Parties can report directly online.

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