Identification of oportunities to develop a regional program for the sound management of PTS. 

The DSD has begun the evaluation of the questionnaires sent by the member countries of the Caribbean region, for the preliminary determination of a strategy, to be agreed with regional organiations and national authorities represented by the National Coordinators for the project. As part of the work plan, it is planned to organize a workshop for the Caribbean region, where the countries expose their advances in the management of PTS and discuss the priorities, goals and challenges related to the theme, looking forward to an agreement towards a Regional Action Plan.

In Southamerica, the Organization of the Amazonic Cooperation Treaty (OTCA in Spanish) is promoting a proposal of a Regional Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Mercury Contamination in the Amazonic Ecosystems (PAM).

The proposal is focused in the problematic of mercury, derived of the gold mining activities. There is also agreement to have a more comprehensive Plan of Action, where all forms of chemical and human induced contamination are included. This towards a true regional chemical protection and at the same time guarantee the fulfillment of agreements and international initiatives of the countries of the Amazon Basin related to chemical protection.

This is why, the DSD identified OTCA’s proposal as an opportunity to develop SMOC in the amazonic region, and begun the coordination with the Secretariat of OTCA to support this initiative in order to strengthen capacities in the management of mercury contamination and to establish a base for interinstitutional cooperation in the amazonic countries in what concerns management of hazardous chemicals in general.

A workshop for the discussion of the proposal among the countries and its possible validation is being organized by the two institutions.

In Central America, the member countries of the Central American System of Integration (SICA in Spanish) are working to develop a Regional Policy on Chemical Safety, a Customs Union and the harmonization of the labeling procedures (CAUCA). The  Regional Policy on Chemical Safety is being worked out by the Central American Committee  for Environment and Development (CCAD), who has established a technical committee for this purpose.

Within the context of CCAD, the central American countries are also working in a 20-year Regional Plan for the management of PCB. Both for pesticides and for PCB, the DSD has identified the initiative of CCAD also as an opportunity to develop SMOC at the regional level.

At the national level there are also initiatives for SMOC. Among others, Nicaragua works in the approval of a legal reform of the Pesticides Law of 2000, as a first step towards a more comprehensive National Law of Chemical Security. Costa Rica has progressed significantly in the elimination of pesticides, and now is working in the completion of the PCB Inventory, as well as Honduras. Panama published the “National Profile to evaluate the infrastructure for the management of chemical substances” in 2005.


[1] Los Estados Miembros de la OTCA son Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Perú, Surinam y Venezuela

[2] Los Estados Miembros de SICA son Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua y Panamá

[3] Información obtenida en entrevistas personales conducidas por funcionarios del DDS/OEA  en misión oficial




This page was last updated on Wednesday September 29, 2010.