10th Anniversary of the adoption of the Stockholm Convention

The Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants was adopted on 22 May 2001 in Stockholm, Sweden and entered into force on 17 May 2004.

Where it started

The Stockholm Convention protects human health and the environment from persistent organic pollutants through a range of measures aimed at reducing and ultimately eliminating their releases.


  • The Stockholm Convention has 173 Parties – 172 countries and one regional economic integration organization (as of 1 May 2011) 
  • 132 Parties have developed and transmitted their national implementation plans  
  • The POPs clearing-house mechanism has been established and used for exchange of information and networking, and Parties were provided with relevant guidance and capacity building in support of implementation of the Convention 
  • Specific exemptions for aldrin, chlordane, dieldrin, heptachlor, hexachlorobenzene and mirex have expired; no further registrations for these exemptions may be made 
  • Nine new POPs were listed in Annex A, B, and C to the Stockholm Convention in May 2009 and one new POP was listed in April 2011
  • The first regional and global monitoring reports on POPs were produced 
  • Regional centres for capacity-building and transfer of technology were established 
  • The PCBs Elimination Network was established
  • The DDT Global Alliance was established
  • Considerable synergy among the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions was achieved

Besides the ten major achievements highlighted above, there were many others paving the long way towards a POPs-free future. All the processes under the Stockholm Convention are country-driven; the treaty itself is the outcome of a long negotiation process. Countries from all regions had to agree on the main objective of the Convention, as well as the set of measures towards its achievement. The backbone of the Convention are the provisions for technical assistance and financial resources, designed to support the successful implementation of the Convention in developing countries and countries with economies in transition. The realization of the Convention’s objectives lies within its national implementation.

Laying down the base

Over the past decade, efforts have focused on laying down a solid base to facilitate the implementation of the Convention at the national, regional and global levels. Remarkable outcomes include the establishment of the Secretariat, the establishment and operationalisation of the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee, the endorsement of institutions to serve as regional and sub-regional centres for capacity-building and the transfer of technology, the adoption of the global monitoring plan as well as arrangements for evaluating the effectiveness of the Convention, and development of relevant guidelines and guidance called for by the Convention.

The transition towards the next stage of implementation has commenced.

Striving for a POPs-free future

Chapter 19 of Agenda 21 adopted at the 1992 Rio Summit and the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation agreed in 2002 both advocated for international efforts to address environmental and human health consequences of production and consumption of chemicals. The adoption of the Stockholm Convention is one of the most significant steps made towards achieving this goal. A compilation of success stories highlighting the impact of the Stockholm Convention at the national level will be presented at the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in June 2012.

“Renew the commitment, as advanced in Agenda 21, to sound management of chemicals throughout their life cycle and of hazardous wastes for sustainable development as well as for the protection of human health and the environment, inter alia, aiming to achieve, by 2020, that chemicals are used and produced in ways that lead to the minimization of significant adverse effects on human health and the environment, using transparent science-based risk assessment procedures and science-based risk management procedures, taking into account the precautionary approach, as set out in principle 15 of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development, and support developing countries in strengthening their capacity for the sound management of chemicals and hazardous wastes by providing technical and financial assistance”. 

Paragraph 23 from the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation (UN-DESA, 2002)


Success stories: Stockholm Convention 2001 – 2011

Parties, NGOs, IGOs and other stakeholders were invited to share success stories on how the Stockholm Convention triggered positive changes in chemical management and/or sustainable development in their country/community/organization/etc. Best stories were selected, compiled and presented at the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio, Brazil in June 2012.

Success stories publication

Global art contest for children and youth

The Secretariat of the Stockholm Convention organised a global art contest for children and youth around the theme Stockholm at 10: Chemical Challenges, Sustainable Solutions. One hundred and sixty submissions, mainly drawings and paintings, were received from 18 countries. An exhibition of the 13 winning entries as well as a selection of other entries was on display at the Palais des Nations for one month.

Winners of the global art contest

Launching national activities

Parties, NGOs, IGOs and other stakeholders were invited to use the Stockholm Convention 10th anniversary package to launch national or other activities, as appropriate. 

The package is composed of the information above, as well as templates which can be found on the CD inside the 10th anniversary leaflet:

Stockholm at 10 - CD

To help you develop your activities, the CD also contains: 

    • The booklet "Major achievements in 10 years" (in 6 languages)
  • A PowerPoint presentation on the same topic 
  • The amended Convention text 
  • The booklet "Ridding the world of POPs"
  • Some links to guidance documents available on our website (on NIP development/update and POPRC issues)
Customize your national posters and information
leaflets with the templates provided in the CD!

The 10th anniversary package