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Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products in the Canadian Environment: Research and Policy Directions

4.4 Developing an Inventory of Information and Activities

At the 2004 workshop “Towards a Monitoring Network” participants recommended that information on PPCPs and the environment should be available from some central location. Centralization of information could be accomplished by developing a specialized national database to capture:

  • Transport and fate data;
  • Research projects, participants, and results;
  • Links to other PPCPs groups and websites;
  • All predicted no-effect concentrations (PNECs), and
  • Publications.

An inventory would be useful to compile technical information (such as toxicological properties, compound fate, and Chemical Management Plan (CMP) and media specific information), assist in risk assessment, and identify gaps in knowledge. It could also be used as a tool to assist research collaboration and target resources. The inventory should cover national and international information.

Development of an inventory would require the participation of federal and provincial governments to provide the necessary start-up and maintenance resources. The estimated costs for the network were approximately $200,000 to set up and $75,000 per year to maintain. Cooperation from municipal governments, academia, and industry stakeholders would also be required to ensure a comprehensive product. Inventory entries would need to be filtered through peerreviewed QA/QC standards to provide a context for the reported results. Access to the information should be restricted to stakeholders and to those who entered data or provided resources. The impact of Access to Information legislation would also have to be considered in this area.

The next steps identified for this action item include:

  • Learn from the experience of others, such as the USEPA Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals program;
  • Establish a lead on this (Ontario Ministry of Environment provisionally) with a Technical Steering Committee; and
  • Commit resources.
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