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Saint Lucia ratifies Minamata Convention, Parties prepare for COP3

The Government of Saint Lucia has deposited its instrument of accession, thereby becoming the most recent Party to the Minamata Convention.

The Eastern Caribbean island nation made the deposit on Wednesday, January 23, 2019, to bring to 102 the number of Parties to the mercury pact.

Rossana Silva Repetto
Rossana Silva Repetto, Executive Secretary, Minamata Convention on Mercury. Photo credit: IISD Reporting Services

Meanwhile, ahead of the Third Meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP3) to the Minamata Convention, submissions for the COP on releases, waste, contaminates sites and effectiveness evaluation were received on Friday, February 15, 2019, the Convention has disclosed. It added that other submissions are due by May 31, 2019.

At its second meeting, the Conference of the Parties agreed on several action items to effectively implement the Minamata Convention and prepare for COP3, to be held in Geneva, Switzerland from November 25 to 29, 2019. In some areas, submissions are invited by parties and other stakeholders, while in other areas submissions are expected through the members of the Bureau of the Conference of the Parties.

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Submissions have so far been made on topics such as “Mercury Releases to land and water”, “Mercury waste thresholds”, “Guidance on the management of contaminated sites”, and “Effectiveness evaluation”.

Submissions were received from governments of Argentina, Costa Rica, European Union and its Member States, Mauritius, Montenegro, Norway, Chile, Jamaica, Japan, Sweden, Uruguay and Switzerland.

Submission were received from organisations like the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC); Ms. Melissa Barbanell, International Council on Mining and Metals; Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC); International POPs Elimination Network (IPEN); Prof. Svetoslava Todorova, Syracuse University; and World Health Organisation (WHO).

Nigeria on Thursday, February 1, 2018 deposited its instrument of ratification, thereby becoming the 88th Party to the Minamata Convention.

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The Minamata Convention on Mercury (“Minamata Convention”) is an international environmental convention for global community to work collaboratively against mercury pollution. It aims at achieving environmentally sound mercury management throughout its life cycle. The Convention was adopted at the diplomatic conferences held in Minamata City and Kumamoto City in October 2013.

The 1st Conference of the Parties to the Minamata Convention (COP1), which gathered governments, intergovernmental and non-governmental organisations from around the world, held in Geneva, Switzerland from September 24 to 29, 2017.

The mercury accord entered into force on Thursday, May 18, 2017 after having garnered the required 50 ratifications.

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