Minamata Convention on Mercury

Mercury is generally used in industrial chlor-alkali and vinyl chloride monomer manufacturing processes, batteries, non-electronic medical measuring devices, fluorescent lamps, etc. It circulates the world by spreading to various media once it is discharged into the environment. In particular, mercury compounds are likely to accumulate in living organisms and Japan experienced serious health damage called Minamata disease. The amount of mercury used in developed countries has decreased. On the other hand, mercury is still used in developing countries, accelerating the mercury concentration in the air and the deposition rate.

The Minamata Convention on Mercury was adopted in 2013, and enters into force on August 16, 2017. Japan, having an experience of Minamata disease, has expressed its will to exercise its leadership to support the global efforts to reduce mercury.

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