Minamata secretariat, others seek effective mechanism for chemicals management


 Photo caption-Claudia ten Have. Photo: IISD ENB

The secretariat of the Minamata Convention took part in the fourth meeting of the intersessional process considering the Strategic Approach and sound management of chemicals and waste beyond 2020, held in Bucharest from 29 August to 2 September 2022.

This event, the first in-person meeting of the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM) stakeholders since 2019, was the latest in a series of efforts to outline an effective mechanism for joint action on most chemicals that have yet to be covered or targeted by existing multilateral environment agreements such as the Minamata Convention.

With global chemicals sales projected to double by 2030, officials and experts intend to counterbalance the negative impacts on the environment and human health with a future framework on chemicals and waste to guide global efforts in the coming years.

Participants, including Minamata Convention’s COP-5 President Claudia Dumitru and Senior Policy and Coordination Officer Claudia ten Have, discussed and worked on the various components of the compilation of draft recommendations to the International Conference on Chemicals Management (ICCM5), with three thematic groups being created to continue deliberations.

ICCM5 President Anita Breyer highlighted that the Beyond 2020 agreement can be a “powerful international, cooperative, multi-sector, multi-stakeholder instrument that complements and supports” existing international initiatives, delivering ambitious and concrete action that is integrated across sectors and value chains.

The secretariat of the Minamata Convention, which took part in the discussions at the thematic working groups during the event, shared with the participants the latest progress made by the parties to the Convention, including the expansion of the list of products targeted for phase out as agreed at COP-4.

IP4 will reconvene in early 2023, further supporting participants in their elaboration of a future international framework on chemicals and waste, for consideration and adoption at the next session of ICCM5, to be held in Bonn, Germany, on 25-29 September 2023.