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Call for comments on draft BAT/BEP guidance
Governments and other interested stakeholders are invited to provide comments on the developing draft guidance on BAT/BEP for controlling and where feasible reducing mercury emissions to the atmosphere. Comments are to be submitted no later than 1 August 2015.

Call for comments on draft BAT/BEP guidance

Call for comments on draft BAT/BEP guidance

Governments and other interested stakeholders are invited to provide comments on the developing draft guidance on BAT/BEP for controlling and where feasible reducing mercury emissions to the atmosphere. Comments are to be submitted no later than 1 August 2015.

Promoting science – policy collaboration on mercury in Jeju, Korea
Over 800 scientists, engineers, and policy makers from more than 60 countries gather in Jeju, Korea, from 14-19 June 2015 to discuss research on mercury and its impacts on human health and the environment at the 12th International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant.

Promoting science – policy collaboration on mercury in Jeju, Korea

Promoting science – policy collaboration on mercury in Jeju, Korea

The International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant (ICMGP) is a biennial event that brings together scientists, engineers, and policymakers from a wide variety of disciplines, from atmospheric chemistry to toxicology. At the 12th ICMGP over 800 participants from more than 60 countries gathered in Jeju, Korea, from 14-19 June, 2015, to discuss research on mercury and its impacts on human health and the environment. The contribution of science towards the ratification and implementation of the Minamata Convention also featured prominently in the programme for ICMGP, supported by a number of events organized by the Interim Secretariat of the Minamata Convention and the UNEP Chemicals Branch.

UNEP participated in the opening ceremony, together with members of the Government of the Republic of Korea, and recognized the key role of scientists in shaping both the Minamata Convention and the UNEP Global Mercury Partnership. UNEP’s opening remarks emphasized that the ICMGP community of scientists has already achieved great success in bridging the divide between research and global policy action, and called on conference participants to continue to strengthen the science-policy nexus.

On June 15, the Coordinator of the Interim Secretariat of the Minamata Convention addressed the opening plenary of the ICMGP with a talk about the importance of science to the Minamata Convention. He recognized the tremendous contribution of the scientific community in elaborating the risks that mercury poses to human health and the environment, making possible the international action that culminated in the adoption of the Minamata Convention in 2013. He also stressed that in many ways, the real work is just beginning, as countries move to ratify and implement the Convention, often with significant challenges. The scientific community has a critical role to play in the implementation of the Convention, from assisting governments identify and measure sources of mercury emissions and releases, to providing the framework for evaluating the agreement’s effectiveness.

UNEP also hosted a workshop at the ICMGP on the UNEP Mercury Inventory Toolkit, which assists countries in developing a standardized inventory of mercury emissions and releases. The Toolkit is a key element in Minamata Initial Assessments, enabling activities funded by the Global Environment Facility to help Governments ratify the Convention. In addition, a special session on the UNEP Global Mercury Partnership was held at the conference to explore how the Partnership is working to bridge the gap between science and policy to deliver solutions for effective implementation of the Convention.

The next ICMGP will take place in 2017 in Providence, Rhode Island, USA. By then, it is expected that the Minamata Convention will have entered into force, and the scientific community can again take stock of the efforts to assist in implementation and evaluation.

More information about the 12th ICMGP can be found here

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