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Global Alliance to Eliminate Lead in Paint (GAELP)
The Global Alliance to Eliminate Lead Paint (Global Alliance or GAELP) is an international global partnership of Governments, private industry, and NGOs that works to promote the phase-out of the use of lead in paint. The Global Alliance was established in 2009 and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Health Organization (WHO) serve as the joint secretariat.
The main objective of the Global Alliance is to prevent children’s exposure to lead via paints containing lead, particularly those in countries where lead paint is still manufactured and is commonly used. Governments, private industries, and NGOs can support this goal by becoming a partner of the Global Alliance.
U.S. EPA, the U.S. Department of State, and the United Nations Environment Program co-hosted a meeting in 2013, attended by representatives from 13 different nations, on the dangers of lead paint and the important work of the Global Alliance. This meeting highlighted options for engaging with the Global Alliance and encouraged attendees to participate further in its work.
International Lead Poisoning Prevention Week of Action
As a member of the Global Alliance, U.S. EPA participated in the first International Lead Poisoning Prevention Week of Action Exit (October 20-26, 2013). During the campaign week, the Global Alliance raised awareness about lead poisoning, highlighted countries' and partners' efforts to prevent childhood lead poisoning, and urged further action to eliminate lead paint.
Click on the map Exit to find Lead Week Activities that occurred in the United States and around the world! Visit the WHO website for a detailed list of events Exit or international outreach materials. Exit * Please note that the map is best viewed in Firefox or Chrome.
Examples of activities during the Week of Action:
- “Spray for Change” video on UNEP graffiti mural
- Reports on high lead levels in paints released in Sri Lanka and the Philippines
- School event in the Philippines
- Industry support for week of action
- Posters in South American countries
- South African workshop on dangers of exposure to lead
Lead exposure is a well-known source of injury to human health, particularly to the health of children and to workers in lead industries. No level of exposure to lead is considered safe. Children exposed to high levels of lead may experience sensory, motor, cognitive and behavioral impacts, including learning disabilities; attention deficits; disorders in coordination, visual, spatial and language skills; and anemia.
Using leaded paint creates potential lead poisoning problems for the future. Most poisoning from lead paint occurs when infants and children ingest the dust of old lead paint as it deteriorates of chips off surfaces. Thus, lead paint poses a health risk long after the initial painting is done. That is why we want to work together to make sure that no paints contain lead.
Alternatives to lead paint already exist. Although lead paint is still produced and sold in many countries around the world, a simple, cost-effective alternative exists. Paints without added lead are as effective and economically competitive as their lead counterparts. In fact, a recent study published by UNEP and the NGO IPEN shows that in many places where lead paint is sold, lead free alternatives exist for similar prices.
About the Global Alliance
The U.S. EPA is an active member, and Advisory Group Chair, of the Global Alliance to Eliminate Lead Paint Exit. The Global Alliance is a global partnership of Governments, private industry, and NGOs that works to promote the phase-out of the use of lead in paint.
The work of the Global Alliance includes raising awareness of the dangers lead poisoning poses to human health; and helping developing countries build regulations to stop the manufacture, import, sale and use of paints containing lead.
- The overall goal of the partnership is to prevent children’s exposure to lead via paints containing lead and to minimize occupational exposures to lead in paint.
- The broad objective is to phase out the manufacture and sale of paints containing lead and eventually to eliminate the risks from such paint.
As Chair of the GAELP Advisory Group, U.S. EPA is working to help make other nations aware of the dangers of lead paint and ways to address this problem. The Global Alliance is focusing its efforts for 2013-2015 on helping countries without existing lead paint laws put effective legislation/regulations in place.
The Global Alliance has five key Focal Areas for organizing activities:
- Health Aspects
- Environmental Aspects
- Workers Health
- Legislation and Regulations
- Outreach to Industry
The Global Alliance is a led by a joint secretariat of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Health Organization (WHO). It was established at the International Conference on Chemicals Management at its second session (ICCM2) as one initiative to implement the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM). Exit
This initiative promotes the implementation of paragraph 57 of the Plan of Implementation of the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (PDF) Exit, which states: to phase out lead in lead-based paint and in other sources of human exposure, work to prevent, in particular, childrens exposure to lead and strengthen monitoring and surveillance efforts and the treatment of lead poisoning.
For additional information on EPA's work with International Organizations, contact:
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Office of International and Tribal Affairs (2670R)
1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20460