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The Minamata Convention on Mercury was promulgated by Decree No. 9,470 of last August 14. With the enactment, the Minamata Convention enters into full force in the national territory. The main objective of the Convention is to protect human health and the environment from the adverse effects of emissions and releases of mercury and its compounds.

Brazil participated actively in the discussions at the seven sessions of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC) from 2010 through 2016, as well as of the 1st Conference of the Parties, held in 2017. It focused on the search for an ambitious instrument within the framework of the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development and the results of the Rio + 20 Conference.

The definition of international rules for the use and trade of mercury represents an important regulatory advance for the control of chemical substances. The Convention establishes obligations to control sources and trade in mercury. It also provides measures for the control and reduction of emissions and releases of mercury in the environment. The text of the Convention also provides for the elimination or reduction of the use of mercury in certain industrial products and processes (such as batteries, switches, fluorescent lamps, pesticides and cosmetics) as well as the environmentally sound management of their waste, the management of mercury contaminated areas, and artisanal and small-scale gold mining measures.

The second Conference of the Parties (COP-2) to the Minamata Convention will take place in Geneva from 19 to 23 November. More information is available on the Minamata Convention website: http://www.mercuryconvention.org/

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