Strategies for Sustainable Methyl Bromide Phase-Out in Africa

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Methylbromide is a colorless, odorless, nonflammable gas that has been used as a soil fumigant and structural fumigant to control pest insects, nematodes, weeds, pathogens, and rodents across a wide range of agricultural sectors. In Africa methyl bromide is used in agriculture, primarily to protect crops as well as for storage and transport of commodities.

Methyl bromide is a naturally occurring substance, but it is destroying the ozone layer allowing increased UV radiation to reach the earth's surface, with potential impact not only to human health and the environment, but to agricultural crops as well. Human exposure to high concentrations of methyl bromide can result in central nervous system and respiratory system failure, as well as cause severe damage to the lungs, eyes, and skin.

Methyl bromide is the only ozone-depleting substance directly connected to food security (production and post-harvest applications), until being phased- out by most countries in the early 2000s. The few African countries that joined in the phased-out reported that there is strong pressure to return to methyl bromide use as a result of the non-sustainability of alternatives, both in terms of availability and cost.

This presentation will explore sustainable strategies that will lead to the phase- out of Methyl Bromide in Africa and highlight some of the challenges.

Iris B. Palmer
508 Compliance

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Date CreatedFriday, June 15, 2012 11:15 AM
Date ModifiedFriday, June 15, 2012 11:21 AM
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