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Sender: owner-imap@webmap.missouri.edu
Date: Tue, 18 Nov 97 15:47:31 CST
From: rich%pencil@interbit.cren.net (Rich Winkel)
Organization: PACH
Subject: PANUPS Reports Obsolete Pesticides Stockpiled In Tanzania
Article: 22179

/** headlines: 142.0 **/
** Topic: PANUPS Reports Obsolete Pesticides Stockpiled In Tanzania **
** Written 8:41 PM Nov 17, 1997 by econet in cdp:headlines **
/* Written 8:09 PM Nov 14, 1997 by panupdates@igc.org in haz.pesticides *
/* ---------- "PANUPS: Stockpiles in Tanzania" ---------- */

Obsolete Pesticides Stockpiled in Tanzania

From PANUPS, 14 November 1997

Hazardous stockpiles of obsolete pesticides are located throughout Tanzania, according to a report by Alcheraus Rwazo, Senior Scientific Officer at the Tropical Pesticides Research Institute (TPRI) in Tanzania. The stockpiles have accumulated for various reasons, including replacement of outdated formulations by new and more effective pesticides, importation of excess quantities and uncontrolled foreign aid in the form of pesticides. Tanzania also lacks adequate disposal facilities, and, as a result, in some cases obsolete pesticide stocks have been dumped indiscriminately in open places.

The exact quantity of obsolete pesticides in Tanzania is not known at present since no comprehensive studies to determine quantities, types and locations have been completed at this time. Nevertheless, scanty information gathered through surveys and complaints from users indicate that there may be more than 90 tons scattered throughout the country. Stockpiles include:

According to Rwazo, the Tanzanian government is now aware of the problems it faces regarding obsolete pesticides, and has made some moves to resolve them. In one case, over 57,000 liters of dinitro-o-cresol have been incinerated at a cement kiln in the outskirts of Dar Es Salaam with the assistance of the German Technical Agency (GTZ). The consignment was imported in the 1950s for locust control, but dinitro-o- cresol was phased out in the 1970s.

The Dutch government is funding a chemical management project in Tanzania. A team of 12 Tanzanian government employees has been trained to assess and document any unusable pesticides and industrial chemicals in the country. The data collected will be used by the government to formulate strategies for proper handling, storage and disposal of chemical wastes (including pesticides) in the country.

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimates that there are more than 100,000 tons of obsolete pesticides in developing countries. Of this, 20,000 tons are in Africa and 5,000 tons are in the Near East. Due to the absence of environmentally sound disposal facilities, some stocks are now over 30 years old -- and stocks are constantly increasing. FAO is seeking financial support from pesticide companies for pilot disposal operations in Gambia (20 tons), Senegal (300 tons) and Botswana (200 tons). Costs of disposing of obsolete pesticides in Africa alone are estimated to exceed US$100 million. Donor countries, aid agencies, agrochemical companies and recipient governments are all responsible for the steady accumulation of obsolete pesticides in developing countries, according to FAO.

"Obsolete pesticide stocks pose a serious threat to public health and the environment," said FAO Agricultural Officer Alemayehu Wodageneh. "Storage conditions rarely meet international standards." In many countries, pesticide containers are kept in the open where they deteriorate and leak their contents into the soil contaminating the environment.

Source: Pesticides News 37, September 1997.
Contact: The Pesticide Trust, Eurolink Business Centre, 49
Effra Road, London, SW2 1BZ UK; phone (44-171) 274 8895; fax
(44-171) 274 9084; email pesttrust@gn.apc.org;