Research Papers


Environment and human exposure to persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in India: A systematic review of recent and historical data

Sharma Brij Mohan, Bharat Girija K, Tayal Shresth , Nizzettoc Luca, Cupr Pavel, Larssen Thorjørn , 2014

Environment International, Vol 66: 48-64p.


Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) have been used in a wide range of agricultural and industrial commodities,resulting in vigorous deterioration of environment and human health. A number of studies on the occurrence of POPs confirmtheir presence in various environmental compartments and human body. In order to dealwith this global concern, India has recently prepared the National Implementation Plan (NIP) of the Stockholm Convention. Common beliefs point at India as a hot spot of POP contamination and human exposure; however no systematic analysis was ever performed so far considering all available past data on POP occurrence. This review aims to examine the distribution pattern of POPs in multicompartment environment and human samples, meta-analysis of time trends in exposure levels to environment and humans, and cross country comparison of POP contamination with China. Based on this review, it can be concluded that the Indian environment and human population are highly contaminated by DDTs and HCHs; however scarcity of data on other POPs makes it challenging to assess their nationwide human and environmental exposure. No evidence of a general decline in DDT and HCH residues in the environment and human body come out from the meta-analysis of time trend. While comparing contamination levels between India and China, tendency towards decline in POP contamination is visible in China, unlike India.


Persistent organic pollutants; Bioaccumulation