International agreements: chemicals and waste management

The chemical and waste management industries are significant economic contributors, providing benefits and employing millions of people around the world. Environmentally sound management of chemicals throughout their lifecycle is essential not only to avoid significant risks to human health and ecosystems, but also to maximize their social and economic benefits.

The trends in production, use and trade in chemicals and wastes are increasing the volume of chemical substances reaching Canada from abroad through imported products and long-range environmental transport. International action is required in addition to domestic measures to reduce risks to the health and environment of Canadians. Canada continues to be a world leader in the lifecycle management of chemical substances and products, and through our domestic Chemicals Management Plan contributes to the chemicals and waste themes currently under consideration by the United Nations Commission for Sustainable Development (CSD).  Environment Canada is engaged internationally to ensure chemicals and waste-related issues are effectively managed through international agreements, such as the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POP), Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade, and the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal; and through cooperation with key international organizations and initiatives, such as the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the North American Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC). 

For further information on Environment Canada's work on chemicals and waste management, please go to Pollutants in the Pollution and Waste section.

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