April 13, 2001
The Hon. David Anderson
Minister for the Environment
Terrasse de la Chaudière, 28th Floor
10 Wellington Street
Hull, Québec K1A0H3
Dear Minister Anderson,
We would like to commend you for Canada’s ongoing commitment to the international treaty on persistent organic pollutants (POPs). We look forward to the signing of the “Stockholm Convention” in May, and to rapid Canadian ratification of the treaty soon thereafter. We hope you will make both of these steps urgent priorities for the federal government.
We urge you to play a leadership role in ensuring the early establishment of the Scientific Review Committee to review new candidates for inclusion under the POPs treaty. There is widespread scientific agreement that many additional chemicals – some in continued widespread use throughout the world – meet the criteria established in the new treaty. The sooner we act to remove these chemicals from production and use, the sooner our bodies and our environment will recover from their constantly increasing burden of contamination.
As a physicians’ organization, we are very aware of the short and long-term adverse effects of a wide range of chemical environmental contaminants. We are deeply concerned – and we believe you must be as well – that present and future generations not be subjected to the same levels of toxic pollution as we have permitted in the past.
Please push hard for Canada to sign on to the Stockholm Convention next month.
Warren Bell MD