Civil Society Petition Letter for National and Global Ban on Endosulfan

11 April 2011

Hon. Proceso J. Alcala
Secretary, Department of Agriculture

Hon. Augusto C. Canlas
Director, Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority

Hon. Ramon J. P. Paje
Secretary, Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Hon. Atty. Juan Miguel Cuna
Director, DENR-Environmental Management Bureau
Philippine Delegate, COP5, Stockholm Convention on POPs
Mr. Renato Cruz
Chief, Environmental Quality Division, DENR-Environmental Management Bureau
Philippine Delegate, COP5, Stockholm Convention on POPs
Mrs. Angelita Brabante
Chief, Chemicals Management Section, DENR-Environmental Management Bureau

Dear Secretary Alcala and Director Canlas,


We are writing with urgency to appeal to the Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority (FPA) to impose a national ban on endosulfan and to back a global ban of this highly hazardous organochlorine pesticide under the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) of which the Republic of the Philippines is a party.

The national ban on endosulfan will bolster the “temporary ban” on its importation, distribution and use under Memorandum Circular 2009-02 issued by then Environment Secretary Jose L. Atienza “to protect the public health from any undesirable risks (and) hazards on the use of endosulfan.”

The global ban will be in concurrence with the recommendation made by the POPs Review Committee (POPRC) of the Stockholm Convention in October 2010 to add endosulfan, after a rigorous process for evaluating the said chemical, to Annex A of the treaty as a new POP for worldwide elimination.

The FPA, of which you are the Chair of the Board of Directors, is empowered by P.D. 1144 “to restrict or ban the use of any pesticide.. upon evidence that the pesticide is an imminent hazard, has caused, or is causing widespread serious damage to crops, fish or livestock, or to public health and environment.”

Copious assessments of the human health and ecological risks of endosulfan by governments, academics and citizens’ groups, including testimonies from pollution victims, have confirmed the toxic, bio-accumulative and persistent characteristics of endosulfan, providing the agency with a solid basis to act with resolve.

We therefore urge your office to please expedite a process that will lead to the adoption of the above two-fold policy in time for the upcoming fifth Conference of Parties (COP5) of the Stockholm Convention in Geneva, Switzerland on April 25-29, 2011.

The decision to ban endosulfan in the Philippines should be easy, non-contentious and defensible as the country has no registered use at all for endosulfan following the decision by Del Monte and Dole pineapple companies not to renew their license to import and use the highly toxic pesticide since 2008. The companies have shifted to alternative pesticides in the aftermath of the deadly M.V. Princess of the Stars maritime tragedy where some 10 metric tons of endosulfan also went down with the ill-fated passenger ship.

For your information, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in June 2010 announced its action to terminate all uses of endosulfan because it “poses unacceptable risks to agricultural workers and wildlife, and can persist in the environment.” Also, over 80 governments, including the state governments of Kerala and Karnataka in India, the 27-country European Union and the governments of Australia, Canada, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand, South Korea and Sri Lanka, have taken decisive steps to protect human health and the environment by phasing out and banning endosulfan.

We hope that through your wise and able leadership the Philippines will rise to this global public health and environmental challenge and join the community of nations towards “eliminating endosulfan from the face of the earth.”

Please send in your response through the EcoWaste Coalition at Unit 329, Eagle Court, 26 Matalino St., 1101 Quezon City (phone/fax: 4411846).

Thank you very much.

Sincerely yours,

Roy Alvarez, President, EcoWaste Coalition

Manny C. Calonzo, Co-Coordinator, Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives

Dr. Romy Quijano, President, Pesticide Action Network-Philippines

Also signed by:

Fr. Max Abalos, Action for Nurturing Children and Environment
Che-Anne Matriz, Akbayan Party – Youth
Josua Mata, Alliance of Progressive Labor
Angelina Ludivice Katoh, Alternative Center for Organizational Reforms and Development, Zamboanga City
Atty. Marlon Manuel, Alternative Law Groups
Jaybee Garganera, Alyansa Tigil Mina
Dr. Leah Primitiva Samaco-Paquiz, Ang Nars
Jeanna Panganiban-Mejia, Angkan ng Mandirigma
Velvet Roxas, Arugaan
Atty. Richard Gutierrez, Ban Toxics
Batong Sandigan Development Foundation, Cavite
Barangay Yakal Materials Recovery Facility, Silang, Cavite, Cavite
Danilo Remoroza, Building Alternative Rural Resource Institution and Organizing Services, Gen. Santos City
Noli Abinales, Buklod Tao
Buklod Tao –Youth
Catechesis Ministry of St. Joseph Parish, Cavite
Catholic Women’s League, Nueva Ecija
Ochie Tolentino, Cavite Green Coalition
Nicky Perlas, Center for Alternative Development Initiatives
Sen. Aquilino Pimentel, Jr., Center for Leadership and Governance, University of Makati
Children’s Helper Project, Cavite
Elsie Brandes-De Veyra, Citizens’ Organization Concerned with Advocating Philippine Environmental Sustainability
Rene Pineda, Citizens Organization Concerned with Advocating Philippine Environmental Sustainability
Daisy A. Langenegger, Citizen Volunteer for the Environment
Jun Salaveria, Cycling Advocates
Ecology Ministry of Candelaria Parish, Cavite
Damas de la Virgen Divina Pastora, Nueva Ecija
Ecology Ministry of Resurrection Parish, Cavite
Ecology Ministry of St. Joseph Parish, Cavite
Antonio Claparols, Ecological Society of the Philippines
Rommel Arriola, FCTC Alliance Philippines
Dr. Maricar Limpin, Framework Convention Alliance on Tobacco Control Alliance – Philippines
Milo Tanchuling, Freedom from Debt Coalition
Tito Villagonzalo, Jr., Freedom from Debt Coalition – Davao
Ines M. Basaen, Global Quality Education Providers
Go Organic Davao City (GoDC)
Tina Delima, Go Organic Mindanao (GOM)
Beau Baconguis, Greenpeace Southeast Asia
Patria Gwen M.L. Borcena, Greenresearch
Health Advocates of Nueva Ecija
Merci Ferrer, Health Care Without Harm
Dr. Jaime Galvez Tan, Health Futures Foundation, Inc.
Engr. Fernando Salise, Human Ecological and Economic Development Foundation, Agusan del Sur
Ines M. Basaen, Informatics International College – Diliman Campus
Egad Ligon, Initiatives for Dialogue and Empowerment through Alternative Legal Services, Inc.
Nariman Ambolodto, Institute for Strategic Initiatives, ARMM
Eileen Sison, Institute for the Development of Educational and Ecological Alternatives
Jo Quianzon, Institute of Primary Health Care
Lia Jasmin M. Esquillo, Interface Development Interventions Inc.
Philip Beda, Iranun Development Council (IDC), Maguindanao
Isaiahville Home Owners Association, Cavite
Lidy Nacpil, Jubilee South – Asia/Pacific Movement on Debt and Development
Sr. Angie Villanueva RC, Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Commission – AMRSP
Ray Abanil, Kaisampalad, Inc.
Mitzi Chan, Kilusan para sa Pambansang Demokrasya
Betty T. Cabazares, Kinaiyahan Foundation, Inc.
Koro ni San Jose, Cavite
Catalina Jocson, Krusada sa Kalikasan
George Dadivas, Kupkop Kita Kabayan Foundation
Lay Minister of the Word St Joseph, Cavite
Likhang Kalikasan, Cavite
Junalyn Gayak-Sumlay, Magungaya Center for PALMA, North Cotabato
Rosanna Palma, Malayang Tining ng Kababaihan sa Komunidad
Vhinz Saladino, Malikhaing Landas na Magpapaybong sa Sining at Kultura, Cavite
Movement for the Advancement of Sustainable Agriculture – Philippines, Inc.
Albert Gavino, MASKARA-Green Stage Filipinas
Alla Tura, Makabayan para sa Bata
Tessa Oliva, Miriam P.E.A.C.E.
Catherine Y. Untalan, Miss Earth Foundation
Froilan Grate, Mother Earth Foundation
Sonia Mendoza, Mother Earth Foundation
Ninian S. Sumadia, Movement for the Advancement of Student Power
Nagkakaisang Mamamayan ng Maguyam – Cavite
Louie Lizano, Nagkakaisang Mananambakan ng Dumpsite Area
Honey Beso, National Secretariat for Social Action, Justice and Peace
Romeo Hidalgo, November 17 Movement
Nueva Ecija Women’s League Coalition
Louise Lampon, PAKISAMA-Mindanao
Edwin Mayormita, Pagdumala Inc., Davao City
Andres C. Tionko, Panay Rural Development Center, Inc.
Roy Cabonegro, Partido Kalikasan
Victoria Segovia, Partnership for Clean Air
Arturo Nuera, People’s Alternative Study Center for Research and Education in Social Development, Inc.
Anna Cabrera, Philippine Animal Welfare Society
Andres C. Tionko, Philippine Network of Rural Development Institutes, Inc (PhilNet-RDI)
Atty. Gloria Estenzo-Ramos, Philippine Earth Justice Center
Obet Verzola, Philippine Greens
Dr. Helen Mendoza, Philippine Network on Climate Change
Isagani Serrano, Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement
Victor Parra Jr., People’s Alternative Development Center, Davao Oriental
Donel Fernandez, People’s Reform Advocates thru Participatory Good Governance, Iligan City
Ben Galindo, Sagip Pasig Movement
Christine Ann Malo, PNU-SUMSOC
Joyet Castor, Samahang Muling Pagkabuhay Cooperative
Marie Marciano, Sanib-Lakas ng mga Aktibong Lingkod ng Inang Kalikasan
San Lorenzo Ruiz Association, Cavite
Bro. Martin Francisco, Sagip Sierra Madre Environmental Society Inc.
Kokoy Gan, Samahang Pagkakaisa ng Tindera sa Talipapa
John Lanuza, Sanlakas-Youth Cebu
Pangging Santos, Sarilaya (Kasarian-Kalayaan)
Fr. Pete Montallana, OFM, Save Sierra Madre Network
Tom Villarin, Siad Initiatives in Mindanao Convergence for Asset Reform and Regional Development
Jean Yasol, SEARice
Rodne Galicha, Sibuyan Island Sentinels League for Environment
Bang Palacio, Sining Yapak
Sr. Susan Esmile, SFIC-CFS JPIC
Jonathan Cortez, Solidarity for Peace, Empowerment and Equity-led Development, Cotabato City
Shoreline Kabalikat sa Kinabukasan, Inc., Cavite
Fr. Glenn Melo, Sustainable Agriculture Apostolate-Diocese of Tandag, Surigao del Sur
Rolando P. Lacanaria, Task Force Detainees of the Philippines-Visayas
Ternatenos Against Landfill Association, Cavite
Maria F. Delos Santos, Vicariate of Our Lady of Grace, Diocese of Caloocan
Rolly Ilacad, Vicariate of San Bartolome, Diocese of Caloocan
Ruby Panti, Vicariate of Sacred Heart, Diocese of Caloocan
Ester Daliada, Vicariate of San Roque, Diocese of Caloocan
June Barloso, Vicariate of San Jose, Diocese of Caloocan
Fr. Archie Casey SX, Xaverian Missionaries
Young Men Christian Association
Ofelia Panganiban, Zero Waste Philippines
Dr. Bessie Antonio
Harvey B. Balibay
Marose Borromeo
Ruben B. Corpuz
Floro Elloso
Ayesa Enrile
Rudy Galang
Sandra Itchon
Vin Lava
Fr. Harvey Legarse, SCF
Mayor Ronnel Lim, Gubat, Sorsogon
Malou Maniquis
Atty. Armand H. Mejia
Maria Dolores Mendoza
Dr. Dea Millora
Dr. Metodio Palaypay
Maria Teresa D. Pascual
Jose Aaron Pedrosa, Jr.
Toti Prospero
Antonia Roxas
Elma Solis-Salamat
Imee J. Siador
Peging Sur
Paul Tobiason
Antonio E. Tambuli
Sr. Maria Aida Velasquez, OSB

Renato Banas, Negros Organic Agricultural Movement

Ruperto Aleroza, Pambansang Katipunan ng mga Samahan sa Kanayunan

Isagane Fernandez, Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement – Negros Occidental

Edwin Balajadia, Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement – Negros Occidental

Joel Alapar, People’s Agricultural Plan for the 21st Century