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Part I - Canada's Draft National Implementation Plan for the Stockholm Convention

Chapter 4: Register of Specific Exemptions and Chemicals Subject to Restricted Use

4.1 Overview

Article 4 of the Convention allows Parties to obtain specific exemptions, e.g., exemptions that are specific to a chemical, a country and a use. These exemptions were included in the Convention because they allow a phase-out period, during which time countries can eliminate production and use and introduce substitute substances and processes. The time period for an exemption is generally five or less years after the date of entry into force of the Convention for the particular chemical. Upon request and in special circumstances, the COP may choose to extend the expiry date of a specific exemption for a period of up to five years.

Parties wishing to use exemptions will be required to submit a report to the Secretariat, and the Conference of the Parties will review the report and make recommendations to the Party requesting the exemption. A public register of specific exemptions will be established and maintained by the Secretariat. In conformity with the requirements of article 4.2, it will include:

  1. A list of the types of specific exemptions reproduced from Annex A and Annex B;
  2. A list of the Parties that have a specific exemption listed under Annex A or Annex B; and
  3. A list of the expiry dates for each registered specific exemption

Parties may, at any time, withdraw an entry from the Register if and when the POP is no longer used or produced in that country.

4.2 Annex B Chemicals: DDT

As noted in Chapter 3, Annex B, Part II of the Stockholm Convention provides for specific provisions for restricted use of DDT (Annex B) in disease vector malaria control. Each Party that produces and/or uses DDT must do so in accordance with the World Health Organization (WHO) recommendations and guidelines, and only when locally safe, effective and affordable alternatives are not available. The Register of Specific Exemptions will be maintained by the Secretariat.

4 (1) A Register is hereby established for the purpose of identifying the Parties that have specific exemptions listed in Annex A or Annex B. It shall not identify Parties that make use of the provisions in Annex A or Annex B that may be exercised by all Parties. The Register shall be maintained by the Secretariat and shall be available to the public.

Parties using DDT will be required to:

  • report on quantities used, conditions of use, and relevance to the Party's disease management strategy.
  • develop and implement national action plans to :
    • confine use of DDT to disease vector management
    • implement alternatives to DDT, and
    • take measures to strengthen health care and reduce incidence of disease.
  • promote research and development of safe alternative chemical and non-chemical products methods and strategies for Parties using DDT. Factors to be promoted when considering alternatives or combinations of alternatives shall include their human health risks and environmental implications. Viable alternatives to DDT shall pose less risk to human health and the environment, be suitable for disease control based on conditions in countries requesting a specific exemption for DDT and be supported with monitoring data.
  • COP will evaluate at its first meeting and every three years thereafter, in consultation with the WHO, to see whether DDT continues to be needed for disease vector control.

The Convention also includes general exemptions for PCBs in existing use (with timelines for their phase-out and elimination), POPs in products, quantities of a chemical to be used in laboratory-scale research or as a reference standard, and unintentional trace contamination of final products where POPs are used as intermediate products.

4.3 Canada and Specific Use Exemptions

Canada does not produce or use any of the Annex A substances that will be listed in the Register, and therefore did not request any exemptions be added to it on its behalf. Canada does not produce or use any currently listed Annex B chemical (i.e., DDT) and therefore does not require an exemption.

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