Saturday, October 3, 2009

PoPs Project – Ministry of Enviroment Implements Stockholm Convention

By Miodrag Stosic

Belgrade, Sept. 28, 2009 (Serbia Today) - During the last several years, numerous project have been realized in Serbia, aiming to provide life in a healthy envornment to the citizens. Besides many NGOs’ projects, there are also those being implemented by Ministry of environment and space planning. Currently, this ministry works on implementing a plan to realize „PoPs project“, that is to be finished by the end of 2009.
The term „PoPs“ is used for long-lasting, organic, poluting substances, toxic for people and all living species. These substances can easily get into human organism, and they are resistent to every form of organic decomposition. Foetuses and babies are main victims of POPs, due to their weak immunity. All these details point to a global danger that threatens from spreading of these toxic substances, as well as to an urgent need to combat them. With a view to that, in 2004 in Stockholm, a convention was adopted to fight against PoPs chemicals.
Serbia is one of the states which received a donation in order to adopt Stockholm convention and to implement its measures. The project is called „Drawing up a plan for implementing Stockholm convention on long-lasting, organic and poluting substances – PoPs“. Realization of the project has been assigned to Ministry of environment. However, this ministry is only one of the partners in this project, in which several very important organizations participate.
Financial help for this project’s realization has been provided by Global environmental fund (GEF), as well as UN environmental program (UNEP). For supervision of this project’s realization, a body called Coordination committee has been established. It consists of state organs’ apointees, in whose authority is management of the chemicals. The fact that many different actors are included into realization of PoPs project speaks not only of its seriousness, but also of the importance of the problem that should be dealed with.
The first stage of the project’s realization is drawing up National profile for management of chemicals. This profile has been made of preliminary inventories which lays down where the wasted pesticides, as well as their equipment is. Specific problem is identifying toxic waste that has been disposed of without a plan. That is why analysing the presence of dangerous substances can not be completely finished.
After that, the Ministry started the second stage of the project – drawing up National implementation plan. This plan sets the task to make an adequate analysis of a current condition, the perspective, and the term for implementing Stockholm convention. This plan at its beginning contains a list of locations at which the presence of PoPs chemicals is recorded, as well as their inventory and classification. Besides this, National plan contains much more general elements, like geographic and demographic elements of Serbia, political profile, environmental conditions review, as well as an institutional and legislative framework. A particular chapter of the plan is dedicated to the description of history of regulating dangerous substances in Serbia, as well as to the appearance of new PoPs chemicals. The wideness of this plan speaks of seriousness with which solving this problem has been approached to. This plan envisages the strategies of implementation, as well as the means of their realization.
Activities of the state in this field up to date can be assessed as very serious and responsible. By implementing this plan, Serbia stands along with neighboring countries, who are also the signatories of Stockholm convention, and becomes a part of a global front for a healthier life.

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