PAN Asia Pacific (PANAP) Briefing: Rotterdam Convention Conference of Parties

PAN Asia Pacific (PANAP) Briefing
Rotterdam Convention Conference of Parties
Geneva, 24 April – 5 May, 2017

 

The 8th Conference of Parties will consider, amongst other things:

  1. the listing for 5 pesticides
  2. a proposal for an amendment to the Convention on listing
  3. the proposal for a compliance procedure
PANAP provides the following information on these considerations.

In summary:

  • all pesticides meet the requirements of the Convention and inclusion in Annex III should proceed
  • amending the convention to remove the need for consensus on listing of chemicals is appropriate. The Rotterdam Convention is for information sharing (not a global ban). Once a pesticide or chemical is listed in the Rotterdam Convention, developing countries can ask the Secretariat for support to build their capacity to review this pesticide in their countries.
  • the compliance procedure should be adopted (even if the bracketed texts are not included it should be adopted). A very useful procedure for ensuring the effectiveness of the Rotterdam Convention.

 

1. Fenthion Severely Hazardous Pesticide Formulation (SHPF) – ultra low volume (ULV) formulations at or above 640 g active ingredient/L
Documents: UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/8; UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/8/Add.1

  • The SHPF was proposed by Chad because of adverse occupation health impacts.
  • CRC 9 concluded, on the basis of information provided by Chad and additional information collected by the secretariat, that the criteria of the Convention were met.
  • CRC 9 recommended listing SHPF Fenthion > 640g/L.
  • The Decision Guidance Document (DGD) was provided in UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.7/8/Add.1.
  • COP 7 did not reach consensus – 1 country opposed listing for a reason not consistent with the Convention (e.g. they wanted to keep using it).
  • Listing would not stop any country using fenthion if they wish to.
  • Listing would enable the provision of technical assistance to those countries that wish to stop using it.
  • The criteria of the Convention are met and the COP 8 should agree to listing.

 
2. Trichlorfon
Documents: UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/9; UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/9Add.1

  • Final regulatory action was taken by Brazil and European Union for health (Brazil and EU) and environmental (EU) reasons.
  • CRC 8 concluded, on the basis of information provided by Brazil and EU that the criteria of the Convention were met.
  • CRC 8 recommended listing the active ingredient trichlorfon.
  • The Decision Guidance Document (DGD) was provided in UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.7/9/Add.1.
  • COP 7 did not reach consensus – 2 countries opposed listing.
  • The criteria of the Convention are met and the COP 8 should agree to listing.
  • Listing would not stop any country using trichlorfon if they wish to.
  • Listing would enable the provision of technical assistance to those countries that wish to stop using it.

 
3. Paraquat SHPF – liquid formulations (emulsifiable concentrate and soluble concentrate) containing paraquat dichloride at or above 276 g/L, corresponding to paraquat ion at or above 200 g/L
Documents: UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/10; UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/10Add.1

  • The SHPF was proposed by Burkina Faso because it was found to cause human health problems to the applicators under conditions of use in Burkina Faso, referring to 53 occupational incidences between 1996 and 2010.
  • CRC 7 concluded, on the basis of information provided by Burkina Faso and additional information collected by the secretariat, that the criteria of the Convention were met.
  • CRC 7 recommended listing the paraquat SHPF.
  • The Decision Guidance Document (DGD) was provided in UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.6/11/Add.1.
  • COP 6 did not reach consensus – 4 countries opposed listing for reasons not consistent with the Convention (e.g. they wanted to keep trading and/or using it)
  • COP 7 did not reach consensus – 3 countries opposed listing for reasons not consistent with the Convention (e.g. they wanted to keep trading and/or using it)
  • Listing would not stop any country using paraquat SHPF if they wish to.
  • Listing would enable the provision of technical assistance to those countries that wish to stop using it.
  • The criteria of the Convention are met and the COP should agree to listing.

 
4. Carbofuran
Documents: UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/14; UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/14Add.1
UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/INF/16; UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/INF/16

  • Final regulatory action was taken by European Union, Canada and seven African parties – Cabo Verde, Chad, the Gambia, Mauritania, the Niger, Senegal and Toga – for reasons of human health and the environment. These included:
  • EU – concern about the acute exposure of vulnerable groups of consumers, in particular children, risk of groundwater contamination and risks to birds and mammals, aquatic organisms, bees, non-target arthropods, earthworms, and soil non-target organisms;
  • Canada – unacceptable risk to workers conducting certain mixing, loading, applying or post-application activities, unacceptable risk from residues in food and drinking water, unacceptable risk to terrestrial and aquatic organisms, 33 environmental incident reports from US and Canada of avian, small wild mammal and bee mortality;
  • 8 African countries – fragile ecology of CILSS, non-compliance with recommended measures for a safe use of carbofuran by users in the context of CILSS countries; residues in harvested crops and the behaviour of local people make the risk unacceptable, high toxicity to birds and fish.
  • CRC 11 concluded, on the basis of information provided by the countries that the criteria of the Convention were met.
  • CRC 11 recommended listing the active ingredient carbofuran.
  • Listing would not stop any country using carbofuran if they wish to.
  • Listing would enable the provision of technical assistance to those countries that wish to stop using it.
  • The criteria of the Convention are met and the COP should agree to listing.

 
5. Carbosulfan
Documents: UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/15; UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/15Add.1;
UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/INF/18; UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/INF/19

  • Final regulatory action was taken by European Union and eight African parties – Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Chad, the Gambia, Mauritania, the Niger, Senegal and Togo – for reasons of human health and the environment. Concerns included:
  • EU – possible genotoxicity of metabolites, carcinogenicity of impurities, possible exceedance of the Acceptable Daily Intake by toddlers; risk to groundwater, and potential risks to birds and mammals, aquatic organisms, bees and earthworms; and an acute risk to children and adults from consumption of a number of crops;
  • African countries – risk to human health through water contamination and high toxicity to birds, bees, fish and aquatic organisms.
  • CRC 11 concluded, on the basis of information provided by the countries that the criteria of the Convention were met.
  • CRC 11 recommended listing the active ingredient carbosulfan.
  • Listing would not stop any country using carbosulfan if they wish to.
  • Listing would enable the provision of technical assistance to those countries that wish to stop using it.
  • The criteria of the Convention are met and the COP should agree to listing carbosulfan.

 
6. Amendment to Article xxii
Documents: UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/16; UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/16Add.1 and UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/INF/40

  • COP 7, decision RC-7/5, decided to undertake intersessional work on the process of listing chemicals in Annex III
  • As a result of that intersessional work a number of countries have proposed an amendment to Article 22, to delete sub-article 5 which requires consensus for listing. This would bring the Rotterdam Convention into line with the Stockholm and Basel Conventions, and limit the ability of 1 country or a small number, to prevent listing for spurious reasons, as is currently the case.
  • The amendments are brought by the African countries.

 
7. Compliance
Documents: UNEP/FAO/RC/COP.8/18

  • Article 17 provides for the development and approval of procedures and institutional mechanisms for determining non-compliance with the provisions of the Convention and for the treatment of Parties found to be in non-compliance.
  • All 7 COPs have considered this issue.
  • Text developed at COP 7 is provided.
  • A few square brackets remain to be agreed.

 

 

16 Days of Global Action on Rural Women Launched

MANILA, PHILIPPINES – At a farmers’ picket-protest against land grabbing in Rodriguez, Rizal, PANAP in coordination with AMIHAN Philippines (National Federation of Peasant Women) launched yesterday the 16 Days of Global Action on Rural Women (#16Days4RuralWMN).

“This is a global campaign to highlight rural women’s struggles, victories and leadership in their assertion to defend food sovereignty and their rights to land and resources. From October 1 to 16, various women’s groups in at least 15 countries will hold simultaneous activities which will culminate on October 15 and 16, International Rural Women’s Day and World Food (Less) Day respectively,” stated Marjo Busto, Coordinator of Women in Agriculture Programme of PANAP.

AMIHAN is a PANAP partner participating in the #16Days4RuralWMN campaign. At the picket-protest, women farmer leaders gave fiery speeches opposing quarrying and land grabbing in the municipality of Rodriguez in the province of Rizal.

Zenaida Soriano, AMIHAN Chairperson, said “We are firmly opposed to big landlords grabbing the lands we have been tilling for generations. We fight against quarrying which only benefits big business but is hazardous to the environment and our health. We demand decent housing, livelihoods, and genuine agrarian reform.” AMIHAN held a nation-wide protest activity yesterday, highlighting farmers’ local issues and demands such as the enactment of the Genuine Agrarian Reform Bill (GARB).

A woman farmer leader from Ilocos Norte (province in northern Philippines), Elizabeth Alfiler expressed solidarity with fellow women farmers in the picket-protest: “Like you I am a woman farmer, a wife, a mother, and an activist. To women farmers like us, land is life. Without land we cannot feed our families, we cannot send our children to school. I am one with you in opposing land grabbing and demanding for genuine agrarian reform.” Alfiler is also a journal writer in the Women’s Travelling Journal (WTJ) for Food Sovereignty, a collection of personal stories written by 50 rural women in 6 countries portraying the realities of their struggles on land and other resources. The WTJ was also launched yesterday as part of the campaign #16Days4RuralWMN.

“With this campaign we hope that rural women’s voices are heard by policymakers and governments and that rural women’s demands to stop land and resource grabbing and to uphold women’s rights are met,” emphasized Marjo Busto. “From now until October 1 to 16, we enjoin women’s groups and advocates to support us in this campaign,” she added.

The #16Days4RuralWMN is being done under PANAP’s banner campaign “No Land, No Life!”— a year-long campaign which aims to highlight land and resource grabbing as human rights issues, raise greater awareness on and generate broader support for ongoing local cases of land and resource grabbing at the international level, and coordinate and reinforce the various national campaigns against land and resource grabbing.

Reference: Marjo Busto, Programme Coordinator, PANAP (16daysofaction@panap.net)

For Land, Rights and Resources: Stories of Resistance

nlnl-stories-of-resistance

With the objectives of contributing to the campaign against land and resource grabbing and supporting grassroots action in Asia, PAN AP and its partners embarked on a three-year collaborative project (2011-2013) that included the documentation of case studies on land grabbing. This led to the publication of the book “Building Community Resistance against Land Grabbing: Documentation of Cases in Selected Communities in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Malaysia and the Philippines”. A useful reference material, the book is remarkable as it involved the direct participation of community-based organizations in documenting, investigating and writing their respective cases of land grabbing and the struggles they waged to defend their rights. It is also a part of our education and information efforts under the “No Land, No Life” campaign, which aims to highlight land and resource grabbing as a form of human rights violation.

Download Here (PDF | 500Kb)

Our Stories, One Journey: Empowering Rural Women in Asia on Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights

women-our-stories-one-journey-empowering-rural-women-on-srhr

This booklet documents 17 inspiring life-stories of rural women from 14 countries from the Global South who participated in the Women’s Travelling Journal on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (WTJ-SRHR). Following the success of the first women’s travelling journal in 2013; this second WTJ is a joint initiative of the Asian Rural Women’s Coalition (ARWC), the Asian-Pacific Resource and Research Centre for Women (ARROW), and our partner organisations in Asia and Africa. The WTJ-SRHR comes at a time when SRHR issues need much attention especially as policymakers and global leaders chart the new post-2015 development agenda. However, as witnessed in many global processes, the voices of rural women are often silenced. Their concerns around their rights, their autonomy, and their bodily integrity – as indicated in the hard-won language on SRHR evident in the ICPD Programme of Action and the Beijing Platform for Action – have been watered-down and traded-off. Today, rural women are more marginalised than ever – despite comprising the majority of the population in many countries in Asia and Africa. Rural women take care of the families and the communities they live in. They contribute significantly to production and reproduction as small food producers, workers, family members, and women. They feed the world; however, many of them carry out their daily roles amidst the onslaught of neoliberal policies, which have wreaked loss of livelihoods, destroyed ecosystems, increased hunger and malnutrition, and broadened social injustice. Rural women are battling these problems while burdened by sexual and reproductive ill-health and violations of their sexual and reproductive rights. Their SRHR issues include continuing limited access to quality health care services, especially sexual and reproductive health information, care and services. In employment, rural women face unequal opportunities and their SRHR goes unrecognized in the labour market. The use of pesticides among women food producers is affecting their overall health while gender based violence and harmful practices such as child, early and forced marriage, and female genital mutilation among others, also threaten their health and well-being.

Date Published:
September 30, 2014

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Illegal Pesticide Trade in the Mekong Countries: Case Studies from Cambodia and Lao PDR

illegal-pesticide-trade-in-lao-and-cambodia-cover

The two studies here – “Illegal pesticides in Cambodia” (2011) and “Illegal pesticide trade in Mekong countries: Case of Lao PDR” ( 2011 to 2013) focus on problems of pesticide regulation, trade in banned and illegal pesticides, use of inappropriate labels on products, health and environmental effects of these pesticides, etc. The studies share several broad similarities, which are also common to many other developing countries in South-East Asia. They were conducted in two areas in Cambodia, bordering Vietnam and Thailand, and three areas in Lao PDR, bordering Thailand, Myanmar, China and Vietnam from 2011 to 2013.

Date Published:
December 18, 2013

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Poisoning Our Future: Children and Pesticides

poc-poisoning-our-future-children-and-pesticides

This book pieces together just some of the research showing how children are being born pre-polluted, affected by pesticides in the home, in their food, in the rural environment, even in schools — and not forgetting those hundreds of thousands of children born into poverty that are forced to work with pesticides in order for their families to survive. It examines evidence that children thus exposed face significant risks of birth defects, childhood cancer, Autism Spectrum Disorders, neuro developmental delays, asthma, middle ear infections, and other diseases. It also examines some of the mounting evidence that child exposures to pesticides may be a factor contributing to the explosion of adult diseases such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, other metabolic diseases, and cardiovascular problems, as well as cancer, neurological diseases and immune disorders.

Date Published:
December 2, 2013

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