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pdf IP137: Persistent Organic Chemicals in Antarctica - A horizon scan of priority challenges

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IP137: Persistent Organic Chemicals in Antarctica - A horizon scan of priority challenges

ATCM XLIII and CEP XXIII 2021, Paris, France / Online

Information Paper

IP137: Persistent Organic Chemicals in Antarctica: A horizon scan of priority challenges

Submitted: 15 May 2021


This information paper has been developed by the SCAR ImPACT (Input Pathways of Persistent Organic Pollutants in Antarctica) Action Group and presents a horizon scan of priority challenges in the field of persistent organic chemical research in Antarctica.

Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) are a subset of synthetic chemicals that share the four characteristics of: i) persistence, ii) mobility in the environment, iii) toxicity, and iv) tendency to bioaccumulate. The SCAR ImPACT Action Group was established in 2018 to facilitate coordinated investigation and monitoring of chemical input to the Antarctic region. In March 2021, all ImPACT members were invited to participate in a scoping meeting to identify key priorities for Antarctic persistent organic chemical research.

This paper presents a summary of identified priority research gaps and suggested actions arising from this meeting. It suggests potential approaches for coordinated research and monitoring efforts and highlights the importance of such activities for informed policy decision-making. It also outlines a number of actions needed to align Antarctic persistent organic chemical research with international efforts and existing global monitoring frameworks. The ImPACT Action Group aims to undertake further work towards specific recommendations, in consultation with other interested groups.


ATCM - Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting
CEP - Committee for Environmental Protection
43rd Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting
14 - 24 June 2021