Cabinet approves updated national implementation plan 2018 for the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants

Trinidad and Tobago now has an Updated National Implementation Plan (NIP) 2018 for the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs). The document was presented by the Honourable Camille Robinson-Regis, Minister of Planning and Development, and was approved by the Cabinet.

The NIP is a blueprint for the environmentally sound management of POPs in Trinidad and Tobago, the development of which was guided by input from a series of multi-stakeholder public consultations and workshops. The Updated NIP, covers the period up until 2023 and outlines the national status of POPs based on inventories conducted, addresses legislative gaps and contains an action plan which specifies the priority POPs activities, responsible agencies and the budget needed for the main categories for national implementation of the Stockholm Convention.

Persistent Organic Pollutants, more commonly referred to as POPs, are a group of highly stable chemicals that remain in the environment for years and sometimes decades before breaking down.  These man-made compounds travel long distances and are highly toxic, causing an array of harmful effects on both humans and animals, including cancers, mutations, birth defects and disruptions to the reproductive and immune systems.

Trinidad and Tobago acceded to the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) on 13th December, 2002. , Trinidad and Tobago is required to submit, and periodically update a National Implementation Plan (NIP) to the Stockholm Convention Secretariat. In compliance with this requirement, the country submitted its first NIP to the Secretariat in January of 2015, for the period 2014 to 2018. The current updated NIP was completed as part of a Global Environment Facility (GEF)-funded regional project entitled “Development and Implementation of a Sustainable Management Mechanism for Persistent Organic Pollutants in the Caribbean”.

Minister Robinson-Regis has indicated that it is her view that the implementation of the Updated NIP will significantly advance the country’s capability in managing stockpiles and the use of these harmful chemicals. In light of this, the Ministry of Planning and Development has submitted the Updated National Implementation Plan to the Stockholm Convention Secretariat in its capacity as the Trinidad and Tobago National Focal Point for the Convention.

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