International Development, Community, and Environment

Title

Selecting High-Priority Hazardous Chemicals for Tri-National Control: A Maximum-Utility Method Applied to Mexico

Document Type

Article

Abstract

The dispersion of persistent, bioaccumulative toxic chemicals poses risks to human health and the integrity of the ecosystem on a continental scale. Mexico, the United States, and Canada sought to add two pollutants to an existing list of four subject to North American Regional Action Plans (chlordane, DDT, mercury, PCBs). Mexican negotiators used results from an internal selection process, applying 14 criteria in five categories - physicochemical, health-endpoint, data quality/quantity, exposure potential, and control feasibility - to a baseline group of over 4,700 substances. Using policy analysis by the multi-attribute maximum-utility method; progressive application of criteria and weighting algorithms acted like successive filters to identify priority lists of 15 and 7 substances/substance groups for Mexico. The 15 are: 1) benzo-a-pyrene (+ other PAHs); 2) cadmium; 3) heptachlor; 4) hexachlorobenzene; 5) lead; 6) lindane (+ other HCH isomers); 7) 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (+ other PCDDs); 8) aldrin; 9) arsenic; 10) chromium; 11) carbon tetrachloride; 12) 3-3'-dichlorobenzidine; 13) dieldrin; 14) nickel; and 15) toxaphene. The first seven are the priority list of seven.

Publication Title

International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health

Publication Date

1-1-2000

Volume

6

Issue

3

First Page

220

Last Page

237

ISSN

1077-3525

DOI

10.1179/oeh.2000.6.3.220

Keywords

chemical risk, Mexico, NAFTA, policy analysis, trinational

Disciplines

Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration | Social and Behavioral Sciences | Sociology

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