The term highly hazardous pesticide or HHP is used to describe not only acutely toxic pesticides but also pesticides that cause serious chronic health effects. When there is a weight of evidence that links a pesticide to a serious chronic health effect, that pesticide is also considered to be an HHP. Chronic health impacts associated with pesticides include cancers and tumors, nervous system disorders, reproductive problems, immune system effects, and endocrine system disruption.
UNEP’s “Cost of Inaction” report estimated that the accumulated health costs of injury to small holder pesticide users in sub-Saharan Africa will be approximately US $ 97 billion by 2020. After decades of concern based on community experiences and mounting scientific evidence of human health and environmental impacts of pesticides, the global community is now poised to take action to phase out highly hazardous pesticides. In 2006, the text of the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM) recognized the need for action to reduce dependency on pesticides worldwide, including phasing out highly toxic pesticides and promoting safer alternatives.
Responding to this, the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) council recommended a global phase out of highly hazardous pesticides. CEJAD’s work on HHPs aims to:
- Protect health and the environment by promoting phasing out of highly hazardous pesticides in Kenya and replacing them with safer alternatives, embracing biology (agro ecology).
CEJAD has been working with communities in Naivasha South Lake region in projects that are aimed at:
- Empowering flower farm workers and communities around Naivasha to monitor the use of highly hazardous pesticides and their effects to the health of the workers and environment
Creating a self perpetuating community based monitoring system for monitoring the use of the highly hazardous pesticides and reducing the adverse impacts associated with their use in flower farms in Kenya.