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Armenia: 'Through Toxic-Free Products to Healthy Generation'

In the course of two years (2013-2015) WECFs partner AWHHE have successfully brought awareness of the issue regarding heavy metals to the top of the national chemicals agenda in Armenia

25.11.2015 |

AWHHE Armenian Women for Health and Healthy Environment

Environmental pollution due to heavy metals is a serious and widespread problem in the republics of the former Soviet Union (FSU). In Armenia, relatively little has been done to accurately assess these concerns. Exposure to pollutant trace metals can cause central nervous system disorders, lung, kidney and liver damage as well as birth effects and cancer. These are serious issues and are considered particularly hazardous for pregnant women and small children even at low doses. Information exchange on ongoing policy discussions needs to be extended.

The project promotes sustainable production and consumption, and contributes to the global efforts aimed at the elimination of the products containing toxic metals by targeting relevant national policies, increasing stake-holder awareness on exposure to hazardous metals, particularly for vulnerable groups. It promotes involvement of the civil society in the decision-making process as a prerequisite for effective SAICM implementation in Armenia.

The overall goal of the project was to promote national policy in reducing the environmental and health threats due to toxic metals. The main objective was to promote civic engagement in national policy targets to reduce the harm caused by toxic metals. The project was funded by Marisla Foundation and Global Greengrants Fund. The projects itself consisted of workshops, exchange meetings and a Round table discussion addressing the environmental and health risks related to toxic metals. Next to discussions and workshops AWHHE conducted their own research by collecting soil samples on sites of Yerevan. The results claimed that some areas of central part of the city were highly polluted. These results were highlighted in press conferences and on an international platform.  


As a result of the advocacy and awareness-raising activities in the frame of a multi-partner project led by AWHHE in 2013, Armenia issued Government Decree No. 278-N, 2014, Approving Technical Regulation on Safety of Toys in line with the EU Toy Safety Directive. This decree which entered into force on 1 March 2015, approves the country's technical regulation on safety requirements for toys as well as labeling and requirements for conformity certification procedures. The technical regulation applies to all toys intended for children under 14 years of age for the purpose of play.

For more information on the project, visit the AWHHE website

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