Document cabinet

Council Resolution: 06-12

Distribution: General

C/C.01/06/RES/12/Final

ORIGINAL: ENGLISH

 

30 November 2006

Adopting the North American Regional Action Plan (NARAP) on Lindane and Other Hexachlorocyclohexane Isomers

THE COUNCIL:

REAFFIRMING Council Resolution 95-05 on the Sound Management of Chemicals (SMOC),

RECALLING direction from Council Resolution 02-07 for the development of a North American Regional Action Plan (NARAP) on Lindane;

RECOGNIZING that scientific evidence indicates that other hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH) isomers which are generated in large quantities in the production of lindane also pose significant health and environmental risks, and that other HCH isomers should accordingly be included in the NARAP;

NOTING that this North American Regional Action Plan (NARAP) on Lindane and Other HCH Isomers contributes to the renewed North American Sound Management of Chemicals Strategy;

OBSERVING that lindane and other isomers of HCH are persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic organochlorines no longer produced in North America, but lindane continues to be used for varying applications and in different quantities in Canada, Mexico and the United States;

Further observing that lindane and all isomers of HCH may cause acute and chronic neurotoxic effects and can produce liver and kidney effects in humans, as well as growth problems and reproductive effects in birds, mammals, freshwater and estuarine species;

RECOGNIZING lindane and other HCH isomers’ potential for long-range atmospheric and oceanic transport;

NOTING that for every tonne of lindane that is produced, there are 6 – 10 metric tonnes of other HCH isomers that must be disposed of or otherwise managed, and that efforts to reduce or eliminate uses of lindane in North America should reduce global demands for and global production of lindane and other HCH isomers, thereby reducing risks of exposure to humans including specific sub-populations (i.e., workers who use lindane, northern aboriginal populations, pregnant women, and children), and will contribute to lower levels of lindane and other HCH isomers in the ambient environment;

FURTHER NOTING that coordinated North American stewardship of lindane will assist the three countries in promoting reductions or elimination of lindane and other HCH isomers from sources outside of North America that contribute to levels of lindane in the North American environment;

RECALLING that lindane and other HCH isomers are Level II substances scheduled for virtual elimination in the Canada-United States Strategy for the Virtual Elimination of Persistent Toxic Substances in the Great Lakes;

ACKNOWLEDGING national efforts to reduce risks posed by toxic chemicals, the recommendations contained in Chapter 19 of Agenda 21 on reducing these risks, and the 2005 proposal from Mexico to add lindane to Annex A of the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants negotiated under the auspices of the United Nations Environment Programme and;

RECALLING that lindane and other HCH isomers are included in the Annex II list of persistent organic pollutants identified in the Protocol to the 1979 Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution on Persistent Organic Pollutants adopted under the auspices of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe in Aarhus in 1998;

HEREBY:

  1. ADOPTS the North American Regional Action Plan on Lindane and Other Hexachlorocyclohexane Isomers;
  2. DIRECTS the Sound Management of Chemicals Working Group – taking into consideration capacity building needs, priorities and opportunities, as well as resources available and ability to enhance capacity through various funding sources – to work with  the Secretariat in undertaking, as soon as possible, the action plan;
  3. DIRECTS the Sound Management of Chemicals Working Group to establish and provide oversight of an Implementation Task Force.  This Task Force will be responsible for monitoring the progress and facilitating the implementation of the action plan.  Such an Implementation Task Force will consist of 2 members from each Party, one of whom will be expert in the environmental health risk management related to pesticides and the other expert in human health risk management related to pesticides, with an emphasis on persistent organochlorine pesticides. The Implementation Task Force will also invite participation and seek advice from other stakeholders such as indigenous peoples, industry, academia, and non-government environmental organizations;
  4. DIRECTS the Sound Management of Chemicals Working Group, through the Implementation Task Force, and in coordination with the Secretariat, to implement the monitoring activities of the NARAP, through the NARAP on Monitoring and Assessment;
  5. FURTHER DIRECTS the Sound Management of Chemicals Working Group, through the Implementation Task Force, to work with the Secretariat to prepare every two years a tri-national report, based on information provided by the Parties, including the following sections: 
    • a)  Status of Lindane in the three countries, in the format of sections 3.3.4., 3.3.5., and 3.3.6. of the NARAP;
    • b)  Available Alternatives to Pharmaceutical and Pesticide Uses of Lindane, in the format ofAnnexes C, D and E of the NARAP; and
  6. ENCOURAGES the Sound Management of Chemicals Working Group, through the Implementation Task Force, to continue soliciting meaningful participation from the public, technical and policy experts in implementation of the NARAP, and, in particular, give consideration to the public health sector, children’s health professionals, and aboriginal peoples in its activities under the NARAP.

 

APPROVED BY THE COUNCIL:

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David McGovern
Government of Canada

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José Manuel Bulás
Government of the United Mexican States

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Judith E. Ayres
Government of the United States of America

Adopting the North American Regional Action Plan (NARAP) on Lindane and Other Hexachlorocyclohexane Isomers