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Pops in developing countries: human milk analysis at Pacific reference laboratory in Fiji Islands

Lal, Vincent V. and Aalbersberg, William G.L. and Fiedler, H. and de Boer, J. and Van Bavel, B. (2011) Pops in developing countries: human milk analysis at Pacific reference laboratory in Fiji Islands. Organohalogen Compounds, 73 . pp. 789-791. ISSN 1026-4892

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The Stockholm Convention, a global treaty on elimination of persistent organic pollutants (POPs), came into force in May 2004. Fiji was the second country after Canada to ratify the Stockholm Convention, thereby agreeing to formulate a national implementation plan to monitor and control the release of POPs in the country. POPs are hazardous chemicals that are persistent, bioaccumulate in food chains and have the potential to impact at all levels of the trophic system. Fiji is an archipelago of more than 300 islands which lies between 15 o- 22.5o S latitude and 174o E - 177o W longitude, spread over a total area of 709,700km2 of which 97% is ocean2. The current population of Fiji is estimated at about 837,2318. The larger islands in Fiji are quite mountainous, but also contain significant flat plains; it is on these flat plains that most agricultural and commercial activities are located and where pollution problems are most likely to occur2. Fiji, like many developing countries in the world, has limited or no monitoring data on POPs concentration in the environment and on the exposure of wildlife and humans to these chemicals1,7. Only a few studies on pesticide levels have been carried out in the South Pacific region, including Fiji, and relatively little is known on the occurrence of organochlorine chemicals2,3,4. Fiji has been part of two World Health Organization (WHO) studies on POPs in human milk. Composite milk samples sent to WHO reference laboratory in Germany indicated the presence of a range of PCDD/Fs and organochlorine pesticides and PCBs6. A United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and Global Environment Facility (GEF) funded capacity building project has provided specific training and support at the Analytical laboratory of the Institute of Applied Sciences at University of the South Pacific. The training and support from partner laboratories assisted the Pacific Reference Laboratory meet international standards for basic POP analysis. In this paper we report concentration data for basic POP chemicals (organochlorine pesticides and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in human breast milk samples taken from Kadavu in the Fiji Islands and analyzed at the Pacific Reference Laboratory in Fiji.

Item Type: Journal Article
Subjects: Q Science > Q Science (General)
T Technology > TX Home economics
Divisions: Faculty of Science, Technology and Environment (FSTE) > Institute of Applied Science
Depositing User: Ms Shalni Sanjana
Date Deposited: 21 Jun 2011 05:26
Last Modified: 06 Oct 2013 22:04

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