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Government Signs Treaty - Now Outlaw Dioxins

Auckland: May 23 2001: Greenpeace congratulates the Government on their commitment to sign the Stockholm Convention. The Convention requires nations to take action to eliminate the 12 dangerous chemicals known as the dirty dozen. Greenpeace now calls for real action to rid our environment of these deadly chemicals..

Hon. Phil Goff has stated that New Zealand will sign the Stockholm Convention (tonight NZ time) in Stockholm, Sweden.
“The signing of this treaty to the eliminate the dirty dozen, which include dioxin, is a great step forward in the battle against persistent organic pollutants (POPs). But the real work now begins.
“Most of the dirty dozen have been banned for use in New Zealand, however dioxins are still legally pumped into our environment daily from industry and contaminated sites. “ says Sue Connor, Greenpeace campaigner

Dioxins are known to cause cancer, birth defects and disrupt the hormone system of humans and animals and are one of the most dangerous chemicals known to humans.

“The time has come to take real action to prevent ongoing dioxin contamination in order to protect our health and environment.

The government must develop policy and law to outlaw dioxins. This means that production processes and products, which cause dioxins to be released, must be stopped. Clean production practices must be implemented. And contaminated sites must also be cleaned up”.

Dioxins are released in to the environment by such processes as the incineration of waste, chlorine bleaching pulp for the production of paper and also from dioxin contaminated sites.

“The government was due to release a public discussion document on what needs to be done about dioxins, however this process has been delayed according to Ministry for the Environment officials”, said Connor. “Greenpeace believes that the only way to protect New Zealanders from deadly dioxins is to stop the dirty processes and products which cause them in the first place”.

Ends

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