Reports & Publication

Managing Pharmaceutical Waste: A 10 step Blueprint for Health Care Facilities in the United States

2006 | Hospitals for a Healthy Environment

The discovery of a variety of pharmaceuticals in surface, ground, and drinking waters around the country is raising concerns about the potentially adverse environmental consequences of these contaminants. Minute concentrations of chemicals known as endocrine disruptors, some of which are pharmaceuticals, are having detrimental effects on aquatic species and possibly on human health and development. The consistent increase in the use of potent pharmaceuticals, driven by both drug development and our aging population, is creating a corresponding increase in the amount of pharmaceutical waste generated. Pharmaceutical waste is not one single waste stream, but many distinct waste streams that reflect the complexity and diversity of the chemicals that comprise pharmaceuticals.

Understanding and simplifying bio-medical waste management

2005 | Health Care Without Harm

The issue of medical waste management was first taken up in India around 1995.A lot has changed since then in the way medical waste is handled, stored, treated and disposed. An important catalyst to this change have been the Bio-medical Waste (Management &Handling) Rules 1998. Framing the rules was one important aspect of waste management, but implementing the rules required that the medical fraternity understood the rules and adopted them into their professional environments. This was possible only through large-scale training of medical staff. Considering the geographical spread of India, and the size of its medical sec-tor, this has been, and continues to be, a challenging task. Srishti, a programme of Toxics Link, has played its part in training healthcare professionals regarding medical waste management and the implementation of management systems in hospitals and other medical institutions.

Strategic Plan on Management of Mercury in Artisanal and Small Scale Gold Mining in Combodia 2012-2016

2011 | UNEP

The Strategic Plan on Management of Mercury in Artisanal and Small Scale Gold Mining (SPASGM) was prepared by the Department of Environmental Pollution Control (DEPC), the Ministry of Environment (MOE), with support from the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP). This strategic plan was developed in response to various concerns on safe use and sound management regarding intentional mercury use in Artisanal and Small Scale Gold Mining (ASGM). This SPASGM is also developed and implemented to support existing legal frameworks, national strategies, action plans and many other relevant technical papers. Technical support for this development was administered by the UNEP Chemicals Branch through the Artisanal and Small Scale Gold Mining (ASGM) Project with in-kind contributions from the Royal Government of Cambodia.

Cambodia Mercury Inventory Report

2008 | Ministry of Environment, Cambodia

All over history, mercury has been known and used for gold and silver processing. In many parts of the world, mercury has been used in batteries, chlor-alkali production, dental amalgam, fluorescent lights, switches, and thermometers. Much of the mercury contained in these end-of-use products can be recycled; however, only a small amount of the mercury used is recycled. Mercury is a liquid metal, occurs naturally in a number of geologic environments, may be obtained as a by-product from precious metals mining, and is found in trace amounts in coal. Much of this mercury may be used and recycled; however, mercury used for gold production and mercury released from coal-fired power-plants, broken fluorescent lamps, battery production, and other sources is not recovered to any high degree and becomes a global environmental and human health concern. Minamata disease is an excellence example of mercury impact to the environment and human health in Japan, which brought a global concern of its release to the environment and seeking cooperation among countries for sound management of its release.

Mercury Contamination Along the Mekong River, Cambodia

2005 | Resource Development International

One of ten dolphins that died in the Mekong River had a presumed lethal concentration of mercury (67 ppm) in its liver. The mercury content of fish at Kratie was on average 102 ng/g (n=137) but in some species it was up to six fold higher. Hair in people collected in the drainage basin with gold mines (Ratanakirri) had significantly more mercury in their hair (4.4 ppm) than those living along the northern portion of the Mekong River (3.4 ppm). Males had significantly more mercury than woman (5.2 vs 3.1 ppm, respectively). Individuals had as much as 22 ppm of mercury in their hair. The concentration of mercury in a few percent of Khmers exceeds that in areas where mercury is associated with mercury poisoning. Gold mines in Cambodia are likely the major source of mercury but tree cores indicated a major flux of mercury associated with deforestation. Further analysis is required to determine what sources of mercury are manageable in Cambodia.

National Profile on Chemicals Management in Cambodia

2004 | Ministry of Envrionment, Cambodia

In order to promote social development Cambodia, as well as other developing countries, has significant sectoral economic improvement including agriculture, industry and health. These sectors development activities have demanded high volume of chemicals uses, particularly in the last 10 years. All chemical substances imported have been distributed to different places and different sectoral users. Therefore, the import of chemicals, and the data and information concerning its use, have been maintained at different institutions. Cambodia has no centralized source for chemicals data and information, and currently lacks a national document. The lack of information and data collection has created problems for chemical management in Cambodia, particularly in ensuring technical management to protect public health and maintain a safe environment.