Mercury Coalition Urges World Governments to Negotiate Strong Treaty

Published In: Environmental, Kenya 
Monday, October 31, 2011 4:56 AM
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Mercury Coalition Urges World Governments to Negotiate Strong Treaty

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Mercury Coalition Urges World Governments to Negotiate Strong Treaty
PR Newswire
NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct. 31, 2011



NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct. 31, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, delegates from more than 100 countries began the third round of negotiations for a legally binding treaty on mercury. Environmental and health NGOs from the Zero Mercury Working Group are calling on governments to begin hammering out specific measures to curb the rising tide of mercury pollution worldwide.  
Delegates have proposed extensive draft text and are expected to begin using it as the starting point for negotiations.
"Too many options are on the table," said Elena Lymberidi- Settimo, ZMWG co-coordinator at EEB.   "It's time to weed out the weak options on the way to building a strong mercury treaty."
"Governments are halfway through the negotiation process, so it's time to start agreeing on meaningful actions," said Michael Bender, ZMWG co-coordinator at MPP. "Without coordinated action, mercury pollution will continue to threaten vulnerable populations worldwide."
Meaningful actions include strong treaty measures to:
Phase out the use of mercury in products and industrial processes;Reduce the global supply of mercury by phasing out mercury mining, and strictly limiting mercury trade to the few allowable uses under the treaty;Require best available control technologies to minimize mercury emissions from new and existing priority sources, such as coal-fired power plants and nonferrous smelters;Require governments to implement action plans to reduce mercury use and releases from artisanal small scale gold mining;Improve global capabilities to safely manage mercury waste and respond to contaminated sites, including addressing the risks to vulnerable populations; andProvide sufficient funding to assist countries within the developing world."The case for taking bold and decisive action is clear," said Richard Gutierrez, Ban Toxics!, "In the process, we need to build off from well established values such as the precautionary principle, polluter pays, and environmental justice, among others."
NGOs look forward to working with governments at INC 3 to achieve these objectives, so that by INC 4 the conceptual outlines of the treaty are clear.
More information:ZMWG Preliminary Views on the INC 3 Draft Treaty text - English version
UNEP INC 3 Negotiations: http://www.unep.org/hazardoussubstances/Mercury/tabid/434/Default.aspx
ZMWG is an international coalition of more than 94 public interest nongovernmental organizations from 52 countries from around the world that strives for zero supply, demand, and emissions of mercury from all anthropogenic sources.
www.zeromercury.org
SOURCE Zero Mercury Working Group








 
Monday, October 31, 2011 4:56 AM

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