Charlie Brown's Opening Statement
at the World Mercury Treaty Negotiations - INC1
The fact that mercury is the largest ingredient in dental amalgam was revealed and recorded before the nations of the world in the Plenary session at INC1, the first session of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee to prepare a global legally binding instrument on mercury by 2013.
Charlie Brown's Opening Statement at the World Mercury Treaty Negotiations
Delivered 7 June 2010 at the first session
Mr. Chairman, I am Charlie Brown, President, World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry, an alliance of many nation-based NGOs. I wish to congratulate the new Chairman, to thank the Swedish government and Swedish people for hosting this conference, and thank the Secretariat for their hard work. We seek a world ban on amalgam, as several nations have already done.
Dentists are deeply divided. The breakdown is about 50-50 in Europe and North America between the mercury-free dentists and the pro-mercury dentists. Likewise dental societies are on both sides, both mercury-free and pro-amalgam.
Mr. Chairman, tobacco was a 500 year mistake. You will decide if the amalgam mistake continues for a 3rd century. But be forewarned, delegates in low-income nations. The Twentieth Century victims of mercury toxicity from amalgam were children in developed countries. The Twenty-first Century victims of mercury toxicity from amalgam will be children in developing countries.
The World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry salutes Barack Obama, the great President of my nation, for his excellent record on mercury, and Lisa Jackson, his Environmental Protection Agency Administrator , who as an environmental director in a state, New Jersey, ordered dentists to start switching to alternatives. It would thus be logical for the United States to lead the nations toward a ban on amalgam, and we urge the State Department to do so.
We wish to work with the World Health Organization. What WHO can do today is insist that patients be told that amalgam is 50% mercury. Today, it is deceptively marketed as 'la amalgama plata´ in Spanish, as 'l'amalgam d'argent' in French, and as ´silver fillings´ in English. That is deceptive.
We wish to work with UNEP and with any and all interested nations to bring in the postamalgam era for this world. Thank you Mr. Chairman, and I close with this statement -
No possible way exists to address man-made mercury without a date certain for the end of amalgam.
Charles G. Brown
National Counsel, Consumers for Dental Choice
President, World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry
June 7th 2010