Page 1 - Policy brief on persistent organic pollutants in Indian environment: A wake-up call for concerted action
P. 1
POLICY BRIEFP o l i c y B r i e f January 2018

The Energy and Resources Institute

Persistent organic
pollutants in Indian
environment: a wake-up
call for concerted action


Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are a class of toxic pollutants that can

persist in the environment for a long time; migrate to air, water, soil, or

CONTENTS to the sediment, and accumulate to levels harmful to the environment,

 Introduction wildlife, and human health. There is enough scientific evidence today to
 Current status of persistent organic
show the ill-effects of chemicals such as dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane,
pollutants in India
 Research study on persistent organic popularly known as DDT. The promising invention of DDT as an insecticide

pollutants in India revolutionized the agriculture sector; however those gains came at a
 How are the other countries managing
price, as DDT proved toxic to many more organisms other than those it
persistent organic pollutants?
 India and the Stockholm Convention was intended to kill.
 Critical action points
 Policy recommendations The initial public warning about possible dangers of POPs came
 Conclusion
 References from their effects on the local environment in the early 1960s and grew

Author stronger in the 1970s. Yet, compounds such as hexachlorobenzene
Dr Girija K Bharat
Sr Consultant, TERI (HCB), hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH), and DDT were among the

Advisor most widely used pesticides in the world during 1970–80. India, being
Dr S K Sarkar
Sr Director and Distinguished Fellow, TERI an agrarian and emerging
economy, is one of Box 1: The ‘Dirty Dozen’
Dr Luca Nizzetto, NIVA, Norway the leading pesticide ƒƒ Aldrin
Dr Thorjørn Larssen, NIVA, Norway manufacturers in Asia. A
Dr Asha A Juwarkar, Formerly of NEERI, India number of studies have ƒƒ Chlordane
pointed to high levels of
The Energy and Resources Institute POPs in the environment ƒƒ Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT)
Darbari Seth Block, IHC Complex, in India because of ƒƒ Dieldrin
Lodhi Road, New Delhi- 110 003 poor management of ƒƒ Endrin
e-waste and municipal ƒƒ Heptachlor
Tel. 2468 2100 or 4150 4900 and industrial wastes. ƒƒ Hexachlorobenzene
Fax. 2468 2144 or 2468 2145 Considering the fact ƒƒ Mirex
India +91 Delhi (0) 11 that about 80% of ƒƒ Toxaphene
India’s population lives ƒƒ Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in malaria-prone areas, ƒƒ Polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (dioxins)
ƒƒ Polychlorinated dibenzofurans (furans)
   1   2   3   4   5   6