Resource Disposal of Obsolete Pesticides including POPs, Promotion of Alternatives and Strengthening Pesticides Management in the Caribbean
Type Working paper
Last update: 13/06/2018
Type: Working paper
Language English
Target countries: Suriname
Download: 1,880kb
Summary The Caribbean Region consists largely of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) in which tourism and agriculture are major revenue earners and important sources of employment. Shifts away from commercial production of commodities (sugarcane, bananas) have contributed to an estimated 200 tons of stockpiles of obsolete chemicals belonging to former commodity farms, which are beyond the capacity of the governments to dispose of in an environmentally sound manner. Of the 46 total stores already inventoried 14 present ‘High’ or ‘Higher’ hazard and environmental risk– these stores may be located near environmentally sensitive areas, near human settlements, or contain extremely toxic products. A number of these sites present contamination of soils in addition to the stocks of obsolete products, which governments have only recently begun to inventory and prioritize for remediation.
The use of pesticides in the region is characterized by use of older, hazardous products including many that are classified as “Highly Hazardous Pesticides” according to the FAO definition. Combined with the inappropriate conditions of use, including use of illegal or restricted products, pesticide application poses an important risk to the fragile island ecosystems, which are included in the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund listing of the world’s 35 diversity ‘hotspots’. The Global International Waters Assessment has noted that “the use of agro-chemicals within the agricultural sector is a source of significant damage to both surface and groundwater resources” and highlighted indiscriminate and improper disposal of agricultural wastes as a priority issue.
The legislation and regulations for the management of pesticides during their life-cycle in the Caribbean and participating countries are fragmented and at various stages of development and enactment. Some make provision for the implementation of requirements for international chemical management conventions. In some countries, legislation and regulations are non-existent. Pesticide regulatory authorities of Caribbean countries are coordinated through the CGPC, the main implementing partner for this project. The CGPC was established in 1987 to improve regional coordination, communication and action on pesticides management issues, and has repeatedly called for a harmonized legal framework for pesticides, including registration and inspection.