What is the Minamata Convention on Mercury?

The Minamata Convention on Mercury is a global treaty that aims to protect human health and the environment from anthropogenic (human-caused) emissions and releases of mercury and mercury compounds to the environment.

As a highly toxic chemical element, mercury is considered one of the top ten (10) chemicals of major public health concern according to the World Health Organisation. Mercury is a naturally occurring element in the Earth’s crust, and although various natural processes contribute to the release of mercury, the anthropogenic causes are the source of utmost concern. Human activities such as mining, combustion, production of metal from ores, the intentional use of mercury in products and processes and the re-mobilization of previous mercury releases have led to an increase in the mobilization of mercury into the environment.

Learn more about mercury and the Minamata Convention at: Minamata Convention on Mercury

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Implementing the Minamata Convention on Mercury

Managing Mercury in the Caribbean

In the Caribbean region, many countries are taking steps to protect human health and the environment from mercury and as of November 2018, the following countries in the Caribbean Region are Party to the Minamata Convention on Mercury:

  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • The Republic of Cuba
  • The Dominican Republic
  • The Republic of Guyana
  • Jamaica
  • Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • The Republic of Suriname

Other Caribbean countries are also conducting activities to assess the implications of becoming Party to the Minamata Convention. The BCRC-Caribbean aims to assist countries in their efforts to ratify/implement the Minamata Convention through the execution and facilitation of project-based activities and the dissemination of information.

Summary and National Videos

As part of the Minamata Initial Assessment Project for Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia and Trinidad and Tobago, awareness raising videos were developed.

(Click titles below to view)

Minamata Initial Assessments (Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines)

Minamata Initial Assessment (Belize)

Mercury Storage and Disposal Project in the Caribbean (Jamaica, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago) [2015-2016]

2017 Minamata Convention Caribbean Pre-COP and Negotiation Training