Promote scientific research about the scope of toxic pollution, its negative impacts on health, poverty and the environment, cost-effective solutions and successful models to help raise awareness about the need for action, and develop performance-based metrics to measure change.
Action: Convene the Global Commission on Pollution + Health, initiate landmark research effort on the global impact of pollution on human health.
In October 2015, at the 4th Session of the International Conference on Chemicals Management in Geneva, Switzerland, GAHP convened a panel of world leaders and experts in the fields of pollution management, environmental health and sustainable development to announce the launch of the Global Commission on Pollution + Health.
Speaking on panel as Commissioners were former President Carlos Salinas de Gortari of Mexico, Barbara Hendricks, Minister of Environment, Germany, Jairam Ramesh, Member of Parliament, India, Achim Steiner, Executive Director, United Nations Environment Programme, Karti Sandilya (panel moderator), former U.S. Resident Director, Asian Development Bank and Richard Fuller, President, Pure Earth.
The Commission is a joint initiative of The Lancet, the Global Alliance on Health and Pollution and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, with additional coordination and input from the United Nations Environment Programme and the World Bank. This body comprises many of the world’s most influential leaders, researchers and practitioners in the fields of pollution management, environmental health and sustainable development. The aim of the Commission is to communicate the extraordinary health and economic costs of pollution globally, providing actionable solutions to policy-makers and dispelling the myth of pollution’s inevitability.
The Commission will lay the foundation for solutions by defining pollution’s many effects on health, economics, and development and then presenting this information to world leaders. The Commission’s ultimate goal is to raise the priority of pollution control in the international development agenda, and thus increase the resources allocated to this pressing global health problem. The Commission Report will be published in The Lancet in 2017.
Build public and political will to address pollution by raising awareness of the health and environmental impact of all types of pollution in order to catalyze technical and financial resources for on-the-ground action in low- and middle-income countries.
Pollution & the SDGs
GAHP’s efforts to secure language in the SDGs about all types of pollution were successful. Language on all forms of pollution were added to Target 3.9, expanding the language addressing just air pollution to include, water, soil and chemical wastes.
GAHP’s efforts through various events sought to gain support for better integration of sound management of chemicals and waste and pollution into the post 2015 development agenda, including in the format of technically rigorous indicators to monitor and measure progress of the SDGs and the Declaration. The event provided a platform to deliver key messages to the negotiating delegates and other stakeholders about the health and environmental impacts of chemicals and wastes and the broader pollution agenda, their implications for sustainable development, why they must be included in the SDGs, and how the progress is to be measured.
Build national capacity and priority country actions – Assist low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) to take concrete action to prioritize and address toxic pollution from legacy and Micro Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) sites and reduce associated health impacts.
- Toxic Site Identification Program (TSIP)
- Technical Advisory Group comprising representatives from a variety of organizations, provided advice and expertise on a range of environmental remediation topics.
- Alliance membership at 40 as of June 2016, and dozens of observers)