UNDP China Launches Global Campaign against POPs in Geneva

May 8, 2015

Beijing, 8 May 2015 – The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) China in cooperation with the Ministry of Environmental Protection’s Foreign Economic Cooperation Office (FECO) released today its first-ever bilingual smartphone game called POPs Hunter, part of an international campaign against Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) in Geneva, Switzerland.

Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) are categorized as hazardous pollutants originating from pesticides, industrial chemicals and byproducts of chemical processes.  POPs can circulate globally and negatively impact the environment in which they are found, ultimately harming human health and the environment. Signed by over a 100 countries, the 2001 Stockholm Convention on POPs targets a list of highly toxic chemicals which governments aim to ban, seek to reduce and eventually eliminate.

As a result of the various POPs programmes funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), implemented by UNDP/FECO and related to the Stockholm Convention, it was found that raising POPs awareness among the public would help in making such programmes more sustainable.

UNDP and FECO therefore launched #StopthePOPs at the Seventh Meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Stockholm Convention in Geneva. In addition to the bilingual English-Chinese POPs Hunter game, the #StopthePOPs social media campaign launch also released the official POPs animation video with subtitles in eight languages.

The campaign was launched by Jacques Van Engel, Director of UNDP’s Montreal Protocol and Chemicals Unit and Ms. Li Lei, Deputy Director General at Ministry of Environmental Protection.

The aim of the campaign is to educate and to celebrate.

By using novel initiatives such as cartoons, with 23 cartoon figures representing the 23 POPs, and “gamification”, #StopthePOPs aims to educate the general public by raising awareness of pollutants and their characteristics. The campaign asks viewers to share the video and game on their social media platforms, offering a chance to win limited edition POPs giveaways.

The campaign also celebrates progress in combating POPs worldwide. UNDP has supported 84 countries in implementing projects aimed at better management of POPs amounting to US $156 million in Global Environment Facility (GEF) grants and US $392 million in co-financing. These efforts have helped 220,000 people reduce high-risk exposure to POPs.

Through celebrating and more importantly educating, the campaign also hopes to encourage governments to continue progress in this field, aspiring towards a POPs-free future for all.

To learn more about POPs, please watch the POPs animation video and visit our campaign page.Download the game and become a POPs Hunter.

Contact information

Yumna Rathore: UNDP China, yumna.rathore@undp.org

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