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ICCM 4 Expands SAICM, Updates Regulations

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The ICCM recently held their fourth conference on their comprehensive implementation of their SAICM program. If you’ve kept up with the ICCM throughout its lifetime, you know that this conference is the fourth of five conferences ICCM expects to hold on a global approach to chemical management, with the last one scheduled for 2020. By that year, ICCM hopes to have successfully implemented basic regulations in chemical management risk reduction, knowledge dispersal, government interaction, global cooperation, and illegal chemical trafficking at both the political and economic levels.

This conference, ICCM 4, took place from September 28–October 2 in Geneva, Switzerland, and was attended by leaders from around the world. This was the last meeting during which committee members could alter aspects of the Strategic Approach. Attendees gave presentations on the thus-far implementation of the Strategic Approach and made suggestions for changes in methods. The 2020 conference (ICCM 5) will be part celebration of success, part critical analysis of the sustainability of the program.

Some of the issues addressed during this conference were the success of implementation of SAICM guidelines thus far, the cooperation of ICCM members at different levels, and different policy issues that needed to be addressed. During ICCM 4, special attention was given to pesticides and environmentally persistent pharmaceutical pollutants. While the general consensus on the chemical management of pharmaceutical pollutants was mixed, ICCM 4 members did draft a strategy to address highly hazardous pesticides through the promotion of agro-ecological alternatives. Over the course of the meeting, ICCM stakeholders also agreed to the adaptation of the guidelines for the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

In the decade since ICCM 1, when the initial outline of the SAICM was developed, ICCM members have encouraged actions on social and political levels that have led to better, more cost-efficient waste and chemical management; better food sustainability in developing countries; and more transparent exchange of information amongst business sectors, private groups, and governing bodies.

Throughout the week that ICCM 4 was held, leaders from several different sectors of chemical waste disposal spoke on the importance of proper management. With their support, others will help and drive policy changes and economic and environmental agenda changes in countries across the world. Over $110 million was generated and dispersed in more than 100 countries worldwide in an effort to raise awareness of and combat different chemical management issues.

By the year 2020, the implementation of the Strategic Approach aims to ensure that the international chemical industry is producing and regulating chemicals in a way that is safe for the environment, healthy for the public, and sustainable as a business practice.

In line with the global vision of SAICM, SafeTec provides our customers tools to manage chemicals safely and sustainably.

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