First agreement draws close on persistent organic pollutants

Substantial agreement on a new UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) protocol designed to restrict or end the production and use of more than a dozen persistent organic pollutants (POPs) is expected at a meeting on 16 June. Many of the participating countries intend to use the protocol to influence negotiations on a global treaty on POPs which begin early in 1998 - but environmental groups are looking to expand the scope of the global treaty in ways which would force major changes on the chemical industry.

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