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The use of mercury in the EU will be reduced to a minimum over the years to come. The new EU Mercury Regulation, which entered into force this year, places a ban on exports of certain mercury compounds, the import and export of certain mixtures of mercury and the production and marketing of new mercury-containing products. The Regulation only allow a very limited number of exceptions. more

The first meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Minamata Convention on mercury will start on September 24th. 76 countries, including Germany, have ratified the convention so far. The Convention places a ban on the operation of new mercury mines and limits the use of mercury in industrial processes. Furthermore, it introduces a medium-term restriction on the use of mercury in small-scale gold mining. more

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On 17 May, the Federal Environment Ministry and the Federal Environment Agency launched the new International Sustainable Chemistry Collaborative Centre (ISC3) located in the UN-city of Bonn. 200 experts came together in Berlin to discuss sustainable and innovative chemicals policy at the opening of the international conference Mainstreaming Sustainable Chemistry - Launch of ISC3. more

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The further drafting of international regulations on chemicals management will be discussed at the UN conference on chemicals management in Brasília. During his opening speech at the conference, State Secretary Jochen Flasbarth advocated greater ambition in chemicals policy. The UN conference aims to draw up proposals for shaping long-term international chemicals and waste policy by 2020. more

Detection of chemicals in everyday products, such as flame retardants and plasticisers, is being further improved. The Federal Environment Ministry and the Federal Environment Agency are working together with the German Chemical Industry Association (VCI) to develop the necessary methods. These three organisations have been cooperating together in this field since 2010. more