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Minamata Convention on Mercury

The Minamata Convention, in force since August 2017, was adopted at the 2013 Plenipotentiary Conference in Kumamoto, Japan. The aim of this global treaty is to protect human health and the environment from anthropogenic and other releases of mercury and mercury compounds. It includes provisions on public information, environmental education, promotion of participation and capacity building.



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Access to information and development of public registries. (articles 3, 4, 5, 6, 17 )

For the purposes of this Convention, information on the health and safety of humans and the environment shall not be regarded as confidential.

The  Secretariat shall maintain a public register of notifications received from Parties regarding the importation of mercury from another Party State or non-Party state or organization. It shall also maintain a public record of exemptions from compliance with the elimination dates agreed in the Convention. On the basis of information provided by Parties, the Secretariat may also make available to the public information on mercury-added products and their alternatives, processes using mercury or mercury compounds and their alternatives, as well as the number and types of facilities using mercury or mercury compounds and estimates of the quantity used annually and any other relevant information provided by the Parties.


Information, Public awareness and environmental education (article 18)

Each Party shall, within its capabilities, promote and facilitate the Provision to the public of available information on the health and environmental effects of mercury and mercury compounds; alternatives to mercury and mercury compounds The results of its research, development and monitoring activities; and activities to meet its obligations under this Convention.

Each party shall promote and facilitate education, training and public awareness related to the effects of exposure to mercury and mercury compounds on human health and the environment in collaboration with relevant intergovernmental and non‑governmental organizations and vulnerable populations, as appropriate.

Emission and transfer registries (article 18)

Each Party shall use existing mechanisms or give consideration to the development of mechanisms, such as pollutant release and transfer registers where applicable, for the collection and dissemination of information on estimates of its annual quantities of mercury and mercury compounds that are emitted, released or disposed of through human activities.

Participation in the elaboration of strategies to identify and evaluate contaminated sites (article 12)

The Conference of the Parties shall adopt guidance on managing contaminated sites that may include methods and approaches for Engaging the public.

Participation in implementation plans (article 20)

Parties should consult national stakeholders in the development, implementation, review and updating of their implementation plans to fulfill obligations acquired under this Convention.

Capacity building, cooperation and mining (article 7)

Parties may cooperate with each other, with relevant intergovernmental organizations and with other entities to reduce, and where feasible eliminate, the use of mercury and mercury compounds in artisanal and small-scale gold mining and processing. Such cooperation may include Education, outreach and capacity-building initiatives and the use of existing information exchange mechanisms to promote knowledge, best environmental practices and alternative technologies that are environmentally, technically, socially and economically viable.