The Hanoitimes - The Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has issued the National Implementation Plan (NIP) for the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) until 2025, and with vision to 2030.
The Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants was signed by the representatives of governments in Stockholm on 22 May 2001, and entered into force on 17 May 2004.
The objective of Stockholm Convention is to to protect the human health, biodiversity and the environment from the threats and risks of POPs. The Stockholm Convention requires to stop the production, restrict the use and finally eliminate the intentionally produced POPs, and carry out necessary measures to continuously reduce the emission of unintentionally produced POPs from industrial, living and waste treatment activities. POPs are chemical substances that possess toxic properties, resist degradation, bio accumulate and are transported, through air, water and migratory species, across international boundaries and deposited far from their place of release, where they accumulate in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, have significant impacts on human health and the environment.
Currently, the Convention is aiming at reducing and finally eliminating 12 POPs, including 9 pesticides: Aldrin, Chlordane, DDT, Dieldrin, Endrin, Heptachlor, Hexachlorobenzene, Mirex, Toxaphene; PCBs (Polychlorinated biphenyls, used in insulating fluid, heat conducting fluid); and Dioxins and Furans, which are unintentionally produced from production and living activities. Among these 12 POPs, Vietnam has banned the use of the 9 POP pesticides, and restricted the import and use of PCBs.
Currently, the world faces many risks related to POPs. Sensitive groups, such as children, the elderly, and those with suppressed immune systems, are typically more susceptible to many kinds of pollutants, including POPs. Because POPs have been linked to reproductive impairment, men and women of child-bearing age may also be at risk. The consequences of Dioxins in defoliant sprays used by the American Army in the war in Vietnam provides specific evidences of the harm to human health and the environment that can result from POPs.
POPs work their way through the food chain by accumulating in the body fat of living organisms and becoming more concentrated as they move from one creature to another. This process is known as "bioaccumulation". When contaminants found in small amounts at the bottom of the food chain accumulate in body fats, they can pose a significant hazard to predators that feed at the top of the food chain. This means that even small releases of POPs can have significant impacts.
Thus, to implement the commitments to the Stockholm Convention, Vietnam shall: Apply advanced technologies and measures to reduce the unintentional production and emission of Dioxins and Furans; Prevent the import and use of banned pesticides; eliminate the POP pesticides stockpiles, treat the pollution in former storage areas of pesticides, decontaminate the areas polluted by Dioxins from toxic chemicals used by the American Army during the war in Vietnam; Properly phase out and safely eliminate PCBs and PCB-containing equipments.
In order to implement Stockholm Convention, each Party should develop its NIP. The objective of Vietnam's NIP is to safely manage, reduce and finally eliminate POPs in Vietnam, thus fulfilling the obligations to the Stockholm Convention and to ward sustainable development in Vietnam in accordance with Article No.7 of the Stockholm Convention.
As such, The Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has issued the NIP for the Stockholm Convention on POPs until 2025, and with vision to 2030. The NIP consists of a synchronous system of actions and solutions, including those dealing with policies, institutions, management, technology, finance, awareness raising and international integration, aiming at fulfilling the obligations of Stockholm Convention step by step. In order for the NIP of the Stockholm Convention to be carried out effectively and synchronously, a roadmap is proposed, identifying clear priorities to be pursued in achieving the final goal of the NIP, namely to protect the environment and human health against POPs, consistent with the Convention's objective.