Advertisement
JIS News

Some 40 stakeholders in the pesticides industry are expected to converge on the Knutsford Court Hotel in Kingston on May 31 to participate in a National Consultation on the Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure on Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade.
These stakeholders will include representatives from the Ministries of Agriculture and Land, Local Government and Environment, Health and Labour and Social Security, Jamaica Customs, the pesticide industry, Petrojam, the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), the bauxite industry and non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
Organized by the Pesticides Control Authority (PCA), which is the designated national authority on the convention, the consultation will provide an opportunity to build public awareness among stakeholders as well to as encourage their involvement in the decision-making process in Jamaica.
“The PCA responds to the Secretariat for the Rotterdam Convention on behalf of Jamaica, but we are trying to get everybody involved and knowledgeable about what we are doing as far as the Convention is concerned,” Registrar of the PCA, Hyacinth Chin Sue Walters, told JIS News in an interview.
As a party to the Convention and a developing country, Jamaica gains access to assistance for risk assessment and to information on chemicals that have been banned and severely restricted in other countries.
The Convention aims to promote shared responsibility and cooperative efforts among countries in the international trade of certain hazardous chemicals in order to protect human health and the environment.
Elaborating further on the consultation, the Registrar said it would go a long way in helping stakeholders to discern what sections of the Convention would impact on their activities and how they could possibly make a contribution to its implementation.
“We also expect that persons will see why it is important to be aware of some of the dangers posed by chemicals and the importance for them to practice safety measures to ensure they do not expose themselves,” she told JIS News.
“Once persons are aware, then those who are exposing themselves to chemicals will not only be on the lookout, but they will be more willing to wear the recommended protective gear among other suggested responses,” she continued. Speaking of other outcomes from the consultation, Mrs. Chin Sue Walters said that she expected that the participants would inform the PCA about any problems they might be having with particular chemicals. “They need to report it so that we can take decisions whether or not to use that chemical in Jamaica,” she noted. The consultation will coincide with Poison Prevention Week, which is being observed from May 28 to June 3. The Registrar told JIS News that the observance was to support the efforts of the Caribbean Poison Information Network (CARPIN), which is a key stakeholder in chemical management, in that it monitors cases of poisoning, among other things.
The proceedings will get underway at 9:00 a.m. For those persons who are interested in attending, Ms. Chin Sue Walters said that they should contact the PCA at 967-1101/3. “We will definitely try to accommodate persons who express an interest,” she said.