Technical guidelines for the environmentally sound management of wastes consisting of elemental mercury and wastes containing or contaminated with mercury

By decision BC-12/4, the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Basel Convention adopted the technical guidelines on the environmentally sound management of wastes consisting of, containing or contaminated with mercury or mercury compounds

At its fourteenth meeting by decision BC-14/8, the COP decided to update the technical guidelines on mercury wastes.

Work following COP-14

In the paragraph 2 of the decision BC-14/8, the COP invited Parties to consider serving as lead countries in the updating of the technical guidelines on mercury wastes and to inform the Secretariat of their willingness to do so by 31 August 2019.

In the paragraphs 3 and 4 of the same decision, the COP decided to establish a small intersessional working group (SIWG), operating by electronic means, to assist in the updating the technical guideline on mercury wastes and invited Parties and others to nominate experts to participate in the SIWG, and to inform the Secretariat of their nominations by 31 August 2019.

In the paragraphs 5 of the same decision, the COP requested the lead country or countries or, if there is no lead country, the Secretariat, subject to the availability of resources and in consultation with the SIWG, to prepare a draft of the updated technical guidelines on mercury wastes for consideration by the Open-ended Working Group of the Basel Convention at its twelfth meeting.

Comments or queries should be sent to Ms. Melisa Lim, Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions (Email: melisa.lim@brsmeas.org). 

Work before COP-14

By decision BC-IX/15, the COP established an SIWG to develop technical guidelines on the environmentally sound management of mercury wastes.

By decision BC-10/7, the COP adopted the first version of the technical guidelines for the environmentally sound management of wastes consisting of elemental mercury and wastes containing or contaminated with mercury. 

By decision BC-11/5, the COP, in recognition of the relationship between the Minamata Convention on Mercury and the Basel Convention, in particular regarding the environmentally sound management of mercury wastes, decided to update the technical guidelines adopted by decision BC-10/7. 

By decision BC-12/4, the COP adopted an updated version of the technical guidelines. In the same decision, the COP has also invited parties and others to use the document and to submit comments on their experience in so doing and on any developments regarding methods for the environmentally sound disposal of mercury wastes, including the long-term effectiveness of the stabilization and solidification of wastes consisting of mercury.