Global Chemical Outlook II

Global Chemical Outlook II- From Legacies to Innovative Solutions: Implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development was mandated by the UN Environment Assembly in 2016. The outlook report seeks to alert policymakers and other stakeholders to the critical role of the sound management of chemicals and waste in sustainable development.

Key Findings of the Report

  • The global goal to minimise adverse impacts of chemicals and waste set out in 2006 under the UN’s global non-binding chemicals programme, the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (Saicm) will not be achieved by 2020
  • The report notes that despite the international agreement, reached at the high-level UN conferences, and significant action already taken scientists continue to express concerns regarding the lack of progress made.
  • Despite significant progress made major implementation gaps remain. In particular, developing countries, and economies in transition, still lack basic chemicals and waste management systems.
  • The report notes that Globally Harmonised System (GHS) for classification and labelling has not been implemented in more than 120 countries, mostly developing nations and economies in transition.
  • The report notes that the countries still lack pollutant release transfer registers (PRTRs), poison centres and capacities for hazard and risk assessment and risk management.
  • The report highlights the example of regulations on lead in paint as a revealing indicator. The report notes that as of September 2018, only 37% of countries had confirmed the legally binding controls on lead in paint. Further, even if regulations on specific chemicals are in place, implementation and enforcement may pose challenges
  • The report notes that chemical production and consumption is shifting to emerging economies, in particular, China. The Asia-Pacific region is projected to account for more than two-thirds of global sales by 2030 and cross-border e-commerce is growing 25% annually.

The report says that Progress remains insufficient and there is an urgent need to take concerted action to develop basic chemicals management systems in all countries.

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