Since 2004, Arnika - Toxics and Waste Programme participated in the international negotiations about new treaty on mercury which is called Minamata Convention since October 2013 when it was signed in Kumamoto, Japan. We were originally active especially in the Czech Republic with the aim to make Czech chlor-alkali plants stop using mercury in chlorine production, which was partially achieved (see the web for hot spots of Spolana Neratovice and Spolchemie Ústí nad Labem).
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Since 2005, we have been active in negotiations of the European strategy for mercury reduction and later on we also participated actively in international talks on the grounds of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), which resulted in launch of talks on a new international agreement on mercury in February 2009. Between November 2008 and April 2009, we coordinated an international project focused on research of mercury presence in items of everyday life and medical devices in eight countries. We host the secretariat of the IPEN Toxic Metals Working Group. Jindřich Petrlík, an executive director of the Arnika - Toxics and Waste Programme is one of two co-chairs of the IPEN Toxic Metals Working Group.
Chemical Plants as a Significant Source of Mercury Contamination in the CEE Region
Implementing period: 2014 – 2015
Locations: Albania, Czech Republic, Kazakhstan, Romania, Slovakia
We evaluated level of contamination in surrounding of different chemical plants using mercury in their technologies, both past and current ones. This was one of IMEAP projects in CEE region. Its final outcome was a regional report.
Global monitoring of mercury in fish and hair
Implementing period: 2012 – 2013
Locations: Many countries in 4 continents
We helped to coordinate this project as IPEN's Toxic Metals Working Group Secretariat. Major leadin organizations of the project were IPEN and BRI (Biodiversity Research Institute). We have prepared also final national reports for each of participating countries, in coopeation with local NGOs in these countries. All reports are available under Reports on fish and hair mercury monitoring.