The Global Environment Facility, which serves as the financial mechanism for the implementation of the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants, has announced a substantial increase in funding, which includes a welcomed increase for issues pertaining to chemicals and waste. With 15 percent of the total allocation of funding allocated to the chemicals and waste focal area, the GEF replenishment signals the key role that chemicals and waste management plays in resolving the triple environmental planetary crisis of climate change, biodiversity loss, and pollution.
Discussions for the eighth replenishment of resources for the Global Environment Facility Trust Fund (GEF-8) were held virtually among representatives of civil society, environmental financiers, and the GEF’s recipient countries and 18 implementing agency partners, over the course of six meetings from April 2021 to February 2022. On April 8, 2022, these deliberations brought about a joint pledge of more than $5 billion by 29 countries for the GEF to protect human health and the environment. As a result, GEF funding is now increased by nearly 30 percent, compared to its most recent four-year operating cycle.
“The Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions welcomes GEF’s robust replenishment, and in particular the heightened consideration paid to chemicals and wastes issues,” stated Rolph Payet, Executive Secretary of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions. He continued to underline that “The recent pledges will considerably boost the implementation of the Stockholm Convention, especially benefitting the Impact Programme on Supply Chains, as well as the management of both legacy and newly-listed Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs).”
Among others, the Stockholm Convention provides an important contribution to resolving the global plastics waste crisis by controlling various POPs used in plastics as additives, flame retardants, plasticizers, or in the manufacture of fluoropolymers. Of the 30 POPs listed under the Stockholm Convention, 15 are either plastic additives or by-products. Such actions by the Stockholm Convention will inform the upcoming negotiations towards a global legally binding instrument to end plastics pollution.
Ministers and other high-level representatives will discuss related issues at the High-level Segment of the conferences of the Parties to the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions (BRS COPs), which will be held in connection with the Stockholm+50 international meeting in Stockholm, Sweden, on June 1, 2022. The 2022 face-to-face segment of the Stockholm Convention COP will take place from June 6-17, 2022 in Geneva, Switzerland.
This article was originally published by the BRS Conventions.