Persistent Organic Pollutants, known internationally as POPs, are chemical substances characterised by:
This all means that they pose a threat to human health and the environment across the entire world. Aware of this, the International Community and especially the United Nations, have implemented instruments to regulate and control POPs. The most ambitious is the Stockholm Convention, which aims to protect human health and the environment. The European Union and all of its Member States signed the Convention. In order for its requirements to be met in a coherent and efficient manner, Regulation (EC) No 850/2004of 29 April 2004 on persistent organic pollutants was established on an EU level. This constitutes a common legal framework created with the view of eliminating, or at least reducing the emission and discharge of substances that fall under the scope of the Convention (as soon as possible when viable). Another of its aims is to establish provisions regarding waste from any of these substances or any material that contain or have been affected by them.