Chemicals have become a necessary element of modern life, whether pesticides, pharmaceuticals or cleaning products. Meanwhile, they cause irreparable harm to human health and the environment. The current volume of the world chemical industry exceeded 5 trillion. dollars'. It is projected to be doubled by 2030.
This is stated in the report of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). Chemical pollutants accumulate in air, water and soil in all regions of the world. Microparticles of plastics, residues of pharmaceuticals, mercury and many other substances are found in water bodies and in the body of marine animals.
In different concentrations, chemical pollutants are detected in the most remote and unexpected corners of the planet. For example, high concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls were found in animals living 10,000 metres below the ocean floor sediments, and organochlorine pesticides regulated under the Stockholm Convention were found in Himalayan glaciers. In addition, hazardous chemicals are regularly detected in the human body.
UNEP experts call on all states to regulate the use of hazardous chemicals and to apply them rationally. They note that, for example, the production of medicines generates at least 25 kilograms of emissions and waste per kilogram of products, and sometimes more than 100 kg, indicating inefficient use of resources.
UNEP recalled the global goal of minimizing the adverse effects of chemicals and wastes by 2020.