The European Commission programme on “Capacity Building related to Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) in African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries” consists of two components: 1) support to regional MEA hubs; and 2. Support to the implementation of specific MEAs. FAO executes a subcomponent of the programme titled “The clean-up of obsolete pesticides, pesticides management and sustainable pest management” (the project)

An independent mid-term evaluation of the project took place in August-September 2011. The evaluation appreciated the satisfactory results achieved by the project despite the limited resources available and strongly recommended the” initiation of a second phase to allow extension of the strategies developed to new countries and to meet the growing demand for assistance in eliminating obsolete pesticide stocks or in addressing other aspects of pesticide management”. The project has taken immediate action to address the recommendations formulated by the mid-term evaluation to strengthen its impact.

A Memorandam of Understanding (MoU) with the Comité de Liaison Europe-Afrique-Caraïbes-Pacifique (COLEACP) was signed. COLEACP represents and protects the collective interests of producers and importers in ACP countries and importers in European countries of horticultural products. FAO and COLEAP have initiated a collaboration to promote sustainable strategies on plant protection of  horticultural products, pesticide management and good agricultural practices in ACP countries.

Progress was made in all cross-cutting issues. From the start of the project, national and regional Pesticide Stock Management System (PSMS) workshops were organized in the African and Caribbean regions to train national teams on the use of PSMS. Training for the remaining Africa countries and the Pacific was implemented in November 2011. Additional core modules were developed for the Master’s degree course for pesticide registrars at Cape Town University. FAO has developed a series of technical guidelines related to pesticide life cycle management. Translation into French and Spanish of these documents has been commissioned.

The project extended assistance to Benin for the disposal of endosulfan stocks. The stocks have been centralized and awareness campaigns for farmers, technical officers and policy-makers on the need to develop and promote alternatives were implemented for the month of October 2011.

Obsolete stocks have also been safeguarded in Kenya and Malawi and contractual arrangements for disposal were made.

In the Caribbean, national inventories of obsolete pesticides were completed in several countries and data are being entered in PSMS. In the remaining countries, completion was expected by the end of 2011. Training on inventory was provided to Trinidad and Tobago and Bahamas. These countries are currently working on their national inventories.

In the Pacific, staff from the Samoan Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and  the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) were trained  in the FAO system for Rapid Environmental Assessment (REA) site evaluation and sampling of contaminated land/buried pesticides. A review of all pesticides registered in the five target countries is planned with technical assistance from the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA).

With the financial assistance of the European Union, FAO Pesticide disposal Series No. 14, 15 and 16 have been produced. The views expressed herein can in no way be taken to reflect the official opinion of the European Union. 

For further information contact Baogen Gu at FAO ([email protected])