Discharge of ash pollutes the air

Chemical Pollution and One Health

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Harmful chemicals are everywhere - in our daily lives and in the habitats that all living organisms depend on.

Exposure to chemical pollution is linked to a wide range of health impacts, including chronic diseases, neurological disorders and reduced fertility. Pollution is one of the most common causes of premature deaths[1] and an enormous burden on healthcare systems caused by chemical exposure-induced chronic diseases. For endocrine-disrupting chemicals alone, linked health effects are estimated to be about 157 billion Euros annually in Europe and 340 billion annually in the US.[2]  These estimates were based on the few chemicals for which there was sufficient data. Consequently these economic estimates are likely to be largely undervalued.

The academic community has gathered compelling evidence on how chemicals and chemical waste endanger human and animal health, the environment, and the planet's biodiversity. While these insights have led to some policies and regulations, the rapid increase in chemical production and the damage caused by chemical pollution, interlinked with climate change and biodiversity loss, require us to think differently and act quickly. With the rise of new technologies and ever-increasing consumption, we must re-evaluate and improve our management practices and policy instruments to minimize the negative impacts of chemicals and waste.

Uppsala Health Summit 2023 Chemical Pollution and One Health: From reactivity to proactivity will gather scientists, policy-makers, and practitioners in the same room to discuss the critical next steps and how to speed up efforts.

In workshops and plenary, we will discuss how we can make better use of research results and work towards integrated “health-wise” policies and how to strengthen international policy instruments and local practice. Themes for workshops include:

  • the health risks of a circular economy
  • monitoring of chemical exposure
  • speeding up capacity and processes for chemical testing
  • pharmaceuticals in the environment
  • how to increase understanding and action for the role of endocrine-disrupting chemicals, and much more.

As a science-to-policy event, we hope our meeting will be a valuable contribution to ongoing initiatives, both nationally and globally, such as the creation of an International Panel on Chemical Pollution and Waste, the Global Plan of Action for the Sound Management of Chemicals and Waste, or the intergovernmental negotiations for a global agreement to end plastic pollution by 2040.

Stay tuned for programme updates!

[1] https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanplh/article/PIIS2542-5196(22)00090-0/fulltext#seccestitle30

[2] https://med.nyu.edu/departments-institutes/pediatrics/divisions/environmental-pediatrics/research/policy-initiatives/disease-burden-costs-endocrine-disrupting-chemicals#:~:text=Opens%20in%20a%20new%20tab%2C%20Dr.,of%20U.S.%20gross%20domestic%20product.


Last modified: 2023-08-31