IPEN International Pollutants Elimination Network

Environmental, Food and Human Body Burden of Dechlorane Plus in a Waste Recycling Area in Thailand: No Room for Exemptions

This report from Ecological Alert and Recovery – Thailand (EARTH), Arnika, and IPEN shows that recycling workers in Thailand have high levels of the toxic plastic chemical Dechlorane Plus in their bodies and in their food and surroundings. Compared to the average levels of the chemical found in samples from a group of organic farm workers and agriculturalists, who had trace levels of Dechlorane Plus in their blood, the Thai recycling workers on average had nearly 40 times higher levels of the harmful substance in their blood, with the highest level in one worker at nearly 280 times the trace levels found in the organic farm workers and agriculturalists. The study demonstrates that e-waste plastics and plastic from end-of-life vehicles are a source of Dechlorane Plus poisoning of workers and contamination of their food and environment, providing urgency to the decision to add Dechlorane Plus to the Stockholm Convention’s list of chemicals for global elimination.

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