IPEP March 2006 Update
for January 2006
Joseph DiGangi, Environmental Health Fund
IPEP has completed or is currently conducting 282 activities in 61 countries: Albania, Argentina, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belarus, Benin, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Chile, China, Colombia, Congo, Czech Republic, Egypt, Estonia, Gambia, Ghana, Georgia, Guinea Bissau, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritania, Mexico, Moldova, Morocco, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Romania, Russia, Senegal, Slovakia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syria, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, and Yemen.
New projects this period include: country situation reports in Albania, Lebanon, Mali, and Slovakia; pesticide contamination investigations in Albania, sampling breast milk for POPs pesticides in Georgia, the impact of DDT and DDE in the Russian Arctic, and the effect of pesticide dumps in Uzbekistan; awareness-raising projects on zero waste in Bulgaria and Slovakia, POPs impacts in Congo, NIP stakeholders in Guinea Bissau, farmer communities in India, government and NGOs in Kyrgyzstan, focus on PCBs in Sri Lanka, and coastal areas in Syria; flame retardant sampling in Czech Republic; and burning dump and incinerator activities in the Czech Republic, Lebanon, Romania, and Thailand.
"For Civil Society" (Kirgizstan): Identification of Sources of Dioxins, Furans, PCBs and the Campaign against POPs Pollution in Central Asia
Armenian Women for Health and Healthy Environment: EMPOWERING THE ARMENIAN PUBLIC TO TAKE ACTIONS TOWARDS ENVIRONMENTALLY SOUND WASTE MANAGEMENT
Eco-SPES (Russia): Identification of Sources and Releases of Brominated Flame Retardants in Moscow
city, identification of alternatives and management strategies
Health Status of Residents, particular Children, of the Impact Zone of Karabash copper enterprise,
Cheliabinsk region, and Tobolsk oil and chemical enterprise, Tumen region - initiated by Iskorka NGO, Russia;
Empowering the Armenian public to take actions towards environmentally sound waste management
initiated by Armenian Women for Health and Healthy Environment
"Evaluation of POPs contamination of food products in four regions of Russia" - initiated by
Environment, Health, Risk NGP, Russia
PCBs Pollution of Nizhegorodskaya Oblast: Territory Monitoring and Inventories of PCBs Sources -
as the Option to Address the Problem
Efforts are being directed at finishing up project activities as IPEP comes to a close. Further developments in IPEP are described below.
Work in the Regions
Agenda for Environment and Responsible Development (Tanzania)
The Hub has been following up with the ongoing projects for timely completion and received progress reports from four projects in Nigeria. Final comments have been made on two reports, Uganda Situation Report; and Community and Workplace Monitoring as a Tool for the Identification of POPs Exposures in Tanzania. The reports will soon be submitted to the Global Coordinator. The Hub is also working on summaries of reports and dissemination of reports to different stakeholders.
Central and Eastern Europe
Arnika (Czech Republic)
Since the beginning of this year we have finalized several PAMs for the short period until the end of April. These PAMs are focused on promising areas of work: country situation reports (Albania, Slovakia, Estonia), PBDEs (Czech Republic), waste incineration (Romania, Czech Republic), POPs in wastes (Estonia, Albania and Slovakia) and some others.
Romanian NGO EEA finished their report focused on POPs pesticides. Two NGOs (Albanian and Estonian) delivered first drafts of the reports they promised to sent ASAP according to PAMs. These reports are focused on POPs in wastes. Slovakian Friends of the Earth were successful in their raising awareness campaign on risks of hazardous waste incineration and promotion of non-combustion alternatives.
Two members of our core team finished their plans for visit of Albania in cooperation with new promising participating NGO there called EDEN Center. We have also participated in European discussion about POPs levels in wastes at the meeting in Brussels held in February by European Commission.
Eastern Europe, Caucasus, and Central Asia Countries
Eco Accord (Russia)
Eco-Accord is currently working on the final reports for the following projects:
Eco-Accord has finalized reports for the following projects:
Living Earth - initiated by the Women Network in the Urals, Russia;
Chishinau Territorial Organisation of the Moldova Environmental Movement: Stop waste incineration
These reports have been submitted to IPEP International Coordinator.
Eco-Accord prepared the following new PAMs which have already been approved by IPEP international coordinator:
Azerbaijian Country Situation report initiated by Ruzgar NGO;
Georgia Country Situation report initiated by ECOVISION Union on Sustainable Development
Public awareness campaign on pesticide, including obsolete and banned pesticides, impact on human
health initiated by Georgian Environmental and Biological Monitoring Association (GEBMA)
Information and Awareness Raising Campaign to Lobby the Ratification Of the Stockholm Convention
in Kyrgyzstan initiated by Independent Ecological assessment NGO
Informing citizens of the Karakalpakstan on the danger of POPs dumping located in the vicinity of
their neighborhood initiated by Women for Sustainable Development NGO
Analyzing and Assessment of POPs situation in Kochkor region of Kyrgyz Republic initiated by
Identification of potential sources of dioxins and furans in Armenia and elaboration of
recommendations aimed at reducing their negative impact on human health and the environment initiated by Ecotox NGO;
Public awareness on POPs and the Stockholm Convention on POPs in Ukraine initiated by MAMA-86-Kharkov;
Organizing Public Hearings on Reorganisation and Sanitation of "Khimprom" Company in Ufa city, Republic of Bashkiria, Russia initiated by the Union of Environmentalists of Bashkiria
DDT and DDE in the Russian Arctic and reproductive health effects among natives initiated by the North-West Public Health Research Center
Eco-Accord works on the following new PAM:
Evaluation of potential risk of obsolete pesticide stockpiles for human health and the environment
initiated by the Women's Network in the Urals
PAN Africa (Senegal)
During these 2 month of january and February, the activities performed by the Francophone Africa Region hub consisted in finalizing and submitting to the global coordination center 4 PAMs :
(i) Raising awareness of the Stockholm Convention on POPs and POPs impacts in the localities of Brazzaville, Nkayi and Ouesso with the Congolese NGO ALPEPAB : the project aims to inform the Congolese public and government about problems related to POPS in areas of Nkayi and Ouesso and about the POPs hazards in general and the Stockholm Convention
(ii) Country Situation report on POPs in Mali with the Malian NGO ASDECOM : the project aims to evaluate the Malian whole situation in terms of POPs, to bring awareness- raising and decision elements to NGOs and actors involved in the Stockholm Convention implementation and raise awareness population about the Malian situation on POPs and hazards related to POPs
(iii) Guinea Bissau NGO and Civil Society Awareness-Raising and Information Project on the Stockholm Convention and POPs with the Guinea Bissau NGO ACOBES: this project is intended to convene an awareness-raising and information workshop on POPs and the Stockholm Convention for NGOs and other Civil Society Organisations (CSO) and key actors of the chemical management in Guinea Bissau.
We worked also on rewiewing projects reports from NGOs and we submit them our comments and suggestion in order to let them able to finalize their projects reports.
The work performed consisted also in arranging the transfer modalities for certain NGOs dealing with some difficulties to get funds for the starting of their project.
PAMs are expected to come from Cuba to do a video about POPs for public awareness-raising with the participation of the University. Another PAM is expected in the coming week to do a workshop in Costa Rica with the Regional Institute of Toxic Substances (IRET) and with the participation of the Environment Minister. Finally, PAMs are expected from Venezuela and Mexico for a POPS country situation report.
The PDF electronic version of "Estimating Dioxin Factors from Diffuse Sources in the Context of the Stockholm Convention" has been widely demanded by NGOs and distributed among delegate governments in SAICM.
The POPs report on the Isthmus of Mexico will be sent for printing next week and NGOs have already organized draft presentations to the national forum on the future of the state company, Pemex.
Day Hospital/WIT (Egypt)
Mohamed El Banna
This month we worked with NGOs in Syria & Lebanon & Yemen and Palestine to develop new PAMs and mentain continuity of on going PAMs. The following new PAMs developed & sent to Int. managment:
1-From Syria, Syrian coastal society for enviromental protection PAM for raising awareness about Stockholm Convention & POPs.
2-Two PAMS from Lebanon, One from AMWAJ environmental NGO , this is one of the main NGOs working in environment & have a network of other NGOs, its PAM for raising awareness about POPs & stockholm Convention & the other PAM from Lebanese Environmental Forum ( LEF) to write country situation report of Lebanon.
The month of February was an active month. We attended the ICCM in Dubai followed by Seventh Global Civil Society Forum and the Ninth Special Session of the UNEP Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environmental Forum. These were very exciting and important meetings and events but also it was a hard working period and a learning experience; meeting so many delegates, Arab NGOs, some Arab Ministers of Environment and others. We had an IPEN side event which was very successful from the Arab point of view as we had after it several Arab NGOs from Qatar, Oman, and U.A.E. who expressed their interest in joining the project. We have had many email communications after Dubai with Arab NGOs. We submitted PAMs from Lebanon, Syria and Egypt. We also informed all NGOs to subit all their reports by before end of March.
Toxics Link (India)
Hub continued to follow up on the interest generated during the regional workshop on POPs, which resulted in some new activities. PAMs submitted by Association for Community Development-ACD and Environment and Social Development Organization-ESDO (Bangladesh), Gramin Vikas Evam Paryavaran Sanstha (GVEPS), Eco Friends, Environment Centre, Action and Students Relief Society (India), CEPHED (Nepal) and Balangoda Environmental Forum (Sri Lanka) were approved. All PAMs but the one by ESDO, focus on creating awareness on POPs within their respective regions targeting varied stakeholder groups. ESDO had proposed a National level workshop in Bangladesh, organised on 19-20 February in Dhaka.
The National level workshop on POPs proposed by Centre for Environmental Justice (CEJ) was successfully organised on 20-21 January in Colombo. It was attended by over 60 participants from across the country. The Hub Coordinator also participated in the workshop. The India country status on POPs elicited special interest among the officials from the Environment Ministry since India is looked upon as a leader in the sub region. The workshop also resulted in increased interest among the participating NGOs. Over 10 groups have expressed interest in being a part of IPEN. The hub has already initiated a discussion with these groups and four of them have submitted concept notes/ PAMs. While one has been approved, three others are under discussion. CEJ has also identified some areas that they may like to take up. Another group Sewalanka is looking at providing training to farmers on POPs at their two training centres. The group has a wide reach in the country. Given the fact that the funds for activities would take over a month, most likely these activities will be dropped for the time being.
The response to the Bangladesh workshop organised by ESDO was equally encouraging with over 30 groups participating. The Minister for Environment also presided over the meeting. The huge amount of interest generated among the participating groups resulted in the launch of a national level network on POPs – Bangladesh POPs Elimination Network or BPEN. ESDO has been assigned the role of moderating the network. Hub shall now work with ESDO and explore the various opportunities with this network.
The Nepal workshop that was scheduled for 22 February has to be postponed till March since the funds did not arrive on time. While other countries somehow managed to find resources to organise the workshop in absence of the funds from IPEP, but Nepal found it difficult to do the same. Few other activities have not taken off since they are awaiting the arrival of funds.
In India, Toxics Link discussed the issue of POPs as part of the Regional workshop on waste management held on 10 January in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu and then on 24-25 February in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. The same was well received by the participants since many of them were not aware about POPs. Hub also participated in the GEF National Dialogue Initiative organised by UNDP and Ministry of Environment here in India from 15-17 February. Toxics Link’s interest was particularly on POPs focal area and it was the only NGO present and working on POPs issue. Toxics Link intends to proactively participate in the follow up actions. Hub is also trying to explore the avenues available with GEF Small Grants Program. Idea is to try and link some of the partners to SGP as well as directly take up some activity. These would further get firmed up in the coming months.
The feedback on UNITAR's material was compiled and shared with UNITAR. The final activity report has also been prepared and submitted.
As indicated earlier, Hub developed a year planner carrying messages on POPs as an awareness raising tool. It was widely distributed across the country. Hub is also exploring the idea of a short informative film on POPs. The work is on.
PAN Philippines has conducted a follow-up examination on some patients poisoned by pesticides used in a banana plantation and held discussions with LAKABA and CAUSE regarding the cases and issues related to the IPEP project of LAKABA. LAKABA has finished the collation of the results of their survey (household survey and key informants) on the status of POPs in watershed areas. They promised to forward the results as soon as possible. The community organizer involved in the project has follow-up the participants in the training workshop and they have indicated positive feedback on the usefulness of the workshop done. The participants reported that many of the members of the community are now more aware of the dangers of POPs pesticides and pesticides in general and have expressed the desire for training on alternatives. PAN Philippines has contacted MASIPAG, a sustainable agriculture group, and they also expressed willingness to provide training on alternatives to pesticides. Initial plans have been made to conduct a follow-up workshop sometime in April, 2006.
AGHAM has reported that they have now some results from the analytical laboratory on the monitoring they are conducting on the possible PCB contamination in a PCB waste disposal area in a populated neighborhood in Pasig, Metro-Manila. They promised to submit a written report very soon. PAN Philippines has scheduled a training workshop on Community Pesticide Action Monitoring Aptil 17-20 in Marbel, South Cotabato as part of its public awareness campaign. A national workshop on GHS and other issues is also being planned tentative scheduled for May, 2006.
We are still waiting for an updated report from RESIST and Fisherfolk Against Toxics.
CEDAC has not received anything yet for their approved PAM. PAN Asia Pacific has promised to send its report very soon and there is no word yet from FIELD Indonesia.
The NGO Forum on Cambodia organized a forum on POPs on 25 January 2006 and another workshop on 3 February 2006, mainly involving students and NGO workers. The draft report is being reviewed.
Work on the Zero Waste policy brief, a collaborative project
of IPEP partners in Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines is being fast tracked (e.g., relevant background materials compiled and assessed). GAIA is meeting in Manila a representative of BaliFokus in early March, the project coordinator.
The screening of "Alice Lives Here" continues. Two more screenings are being planned on 4 and 28 March to inform the public about the response of Broga residents upon learning that a monstrous waste incinerator was to be built near their village. The site for the said incinerator has been moved down the slope and now it lies right smack on Alice's mother's land. The translation of the documentary into Chinese is now complete. Log on to http://www.reelpower.blogspot.com/ for more information.
The results of a community health assessment in a POPs-contaminated site in the former US military bases in the country are now being analyzed by academic, NGO and Department of Health reviewers according the People’s Task Force for Bases Cleanup, the project implementer.
The Cavite Green Coalition, the Ecowaste Coalition and related groups welcomed as citizens’ victory the non-renewal of the permit to operate of the IWMI medical waste incinerator due to its failure to submit the required dioxin and furan test results despite the extension of deadline.
The ThaiPEN network submitted two new PAMs for 1) a hotspot report involving dioxin emissions from municipal waste incinerators in Samui and Phuket, and 2) a report on the illegal use of POPs pesticides, including endosulfan, in the province of Suphanburi.
Environment and consumer groups in Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand, including four IPEP partners, asked a British trade mission that visited the region on 11-22 February 2006 not to promote incineration, including waste-to-energy technologies. Instead of incinerators and landfills, they asked UK to support resource-conserving community enterprises and programs that will maximize recycling of resources, generate jobs, develop local economies and prevent harm to the environment and people's health.
The "Citizen’s Guide to the Stockholm Convention" has been posted and versions in English and Spanish are available on the front page of the IPEP website here: http://www.oztoxics.org/ipepweb/ The IPEP website can be reached through the IPEN website at http://www.ipen.org or directly at http://www.oztoxics.org/ipepweb/. A full project index with many reports available is available on the IPEP website and located here: http://www.oztoxics.org/ipepweb/projects/project%20index_5_1.html
The combined total of the NGO cash and in-kind co-financing in four IPEP regions now totals $467,388. Calculations of substantial in-kind co-finance contributions to IPEP are ongoing in the other regions.
Version: 2.0 (January 10, 2007)