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Wonk Warning: What follows is a long and detailed post wrapping up last week's POPRC6 meeting. Read at your own risk!

I recently spent a week in Switzerland attending the sixth meeting of the Stockholm Convention's Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee. As I reported on Friday, the Committee voted late in the day to recommend a global phaseout of endosulfan, an antiquated organochlorine insecticide.

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It's been a real nail-biter, but at about 5 pm today, the committee decided to recommend a global ban on endosulfan! As predicted, India would not agree, so the committee was forced to a vote. In the end, there were 24 votes for a ban, 5 abstentions, and no votes against.

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It's Friday morning Geneva; the last day of POPRC6. For the last four days, scientific experts, government delegates, and representatives from industry and NGOs like PAN have been discussing some of the most dangerous chemicals in the world: those which are not only highly toxic but also extremely persistent. Long after they fulfill their intended purposes, these "chemical zombies" continue wander the Earth inflicting indiscriminate damage, refusing to die.

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Industry's dirty defense of endosulfan

The POPRC meeting in Geneva continues, but there's not much news to report on endosulfan today. So I thought that today it would be interesting to give a run down of who is here to defend the insecticide.

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It's Tuesday morning in Geneva, and there's lots of good news to report from the first full day of negotiations of the expert committee of the Stockholm Convention. As the parties consider whether to recommend a worldwide ban on the antiquated insecticide endosulfan, yesterday saw two more countries announce domestic bans. Prof. Masaru Kitano of Meiji University told the committee that the Japanese registration for endosulfan expired on September 29 and was not renewed, and then Ms. Kyunghee Choi of South Korea announced that all uses would be phased out in that country by December 2011.