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ARCHIVED - Part II: Canada's National Action Plan on Unintentionally Produced Persistent Organic Pollutants (NAP)

2 Background

Under Article 5 of the Stockholm Convention, Parties are required to take certain measures, as summarized in Figure 2-1 below, to reduce total releases of by-product emissions of Annex C chemicals from anthropogenic sources "with the goal of their continuing minimization and, where feasible, ultimate elimination".

Figure 2-1: Schematic Summarizing Obligations of Article 5 of the Stockholm Convention on POPs.

Summary* of Measures for Unintentionally produced Presistent Organic Pollutants
(UPOPs: PCDD/F, HCB, PCBs)
*See Convention Legal text for definitive details

  • Develop Action Plan with implementation schedule, 2 years after entry into force for Party
  • Inventory current and projected releases.
  • Evaluate laws and policies.
  • Develop and promote strategies and review every 5 years.
  • Require BAT** for new sources identified in plan and Part II Annex C 4 years after entry into force for Party
  • Promote BAT for existing sources Part II and Part III, Annex C, and for new sources Part III, Annex C.
  • Promote BEP*** for new and existing sources Part II and Part III, Annex C.

** Best Available Techniques (BAT): most effective and advanced activities to limit, prevent or reduce releases (process description, available techniques, and achievable release levels).
*** Best Environmental Practices (BEP): environmental control measures and strategies.

Sources - Part II Annex C Require BAT for new Promote BEP
  • Incinerators (municipal, hazardous, medical, sewage sludge)
  • Cement kilns - Hazardous wastes
  • Pulp production using elemental chlorines
  • Thermal metallurgical process (iron sintering, secondary copper, aluminium and zinc


Sources - Part III Annex C Promote BAT/BEP
  • Open burning of waste, residential burning
  • Wood, other biomass firing
  • Fossil fuelled utility, industrial boilers
  • "other" thermal metallurgical process (secondary lead, secondary steel, primary aluminium, primary base metals (i.e. copper, lead, nickel,zinc), magnesium)
  • Smouldering copper cables
  • Specific chemical processes (chlorophenols, chloranil), textile and leather dyeing and finishing
  • Cremaatoria, destruction animal carcasses
  • Motor vehicules, waste oil refineries, vehicle shredder plants

Under Article 5 (a), the Convention provides further guidance on the content of an action plan:

  1. An evaluation of current and projected releases, including the development and maintenance of source inventories and release estimates, taking into consideration the source categories identified in Annex C;
  2. An evaluation of the efficacy of the laws and policies of the Party relating to the management of such releases;
  3. Strategies to meet the obligations of this paragraph [measures to reduce or eliminate releases from unintentional production], taking into consideration the evaluations in (i) and (ii);
  4. Steps to promote education and training with regard to, and awareness of, those strategies;
  5. A review every five years of the strategies and of their success in meeting the obligations of this paragraph [measures to reduce or eliminate releases from unintentional production]; such reviews shall be included in reports submitted pursuant to Article 15; and
  6. A schedule for implementation of the action plan, including for the strategies and measures identified therein.

Annex C of the Stockholm Convention lists 17 sectors or categories that are identified as sources of the four unintentionally produced POPs. These have been listed below for reference.

Part II Source Categories:

Polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans, hexachlorobenzene and polychlorinated biphenyls are unintentionally formed and released from thermal processes involving organic matter and chlorine as a result of incomplete combustion or chemical reactions. The following industrial source categories have the potential for comparatively high formation and release of these chemicals to the environment:

  1. Waste incinerators, including co-incinerators of municipal, hazardous or medical waste or of sewage sludge;
  2. Cement kilns firing hazardous waste;
  3. Production of pulp using elemental chlorine or chemicals generating elemental chlorine for bleaching;
  4. The following thermal processes in the metallurgical industry:
    (i) Secondary copper production;
    (ii) Sinter plants in the iron and steel industry;
    (iii) Secondary aluminium production;
    (iv) Secondary zinc production.

Part III: Source categories

Polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans, hexachlorobenzene and polychlorinated biphenyls may also be unintentionally formed and released from the following source categories, including:

  1. (a) Open burning of waste, including burning of landfill sites;
  2. Thermal processes in the metallurgical industry not mentioned in Part II;
  3. Residential combustion sources;
  4. Fossil fuel-fired utility and industrial boilers;
  5. Firing installations for wood and other biomass fuels;
  6. Specific chemical production processes releasing unintentionally formed persistent organic pollutants, especially production of chlorophenols and chloranil;
  7. Crematoria;
  8. Motor vehicles, particularly those burning leaded gasoline;
  9. Destruction of animal carcasses;
  10. Textile and leather dyeing (with chloranil) and finishing (with alkaline extraction);
  11. Shredder plants for the treatment of end of life vehicles;
  12. Smouldering of copper cables;
  13. Waste oil refineries.
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