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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries Summary and Recommendations International chemical security has historically focused on chemicals controlled by the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC),1 as well as explosives, flammables, and chemicals used for production of illicit drugs. In the last 20 years, however, there has been growing concern about the use of toxic industrial chemicals and other hazardous chemicals by those seeking to perpetrate acts of terrorism2; such chemicals are commonly known as dual-use or multiple-use chemicals. The 1995 sarin attack by the Aum Shinrikyo cult brought to light the potentially devastating outcome of the diversion and use of chemicals for malevolent purposes. Many other incidents have occurred involving intentional releases of hazardous chemicals with significance to public health and safety.3 In this report, the term chemicals of concern (COC) is used to describe all those laboratory chemicals that pose a high risk to safety and security and include4 1 See Appendix Table D-1 for an example list of Chemical Weapons Convention chemicals, and see the U.S. Chemical Weapons Convention Web site at www.cwc.gov for further information. 2 For more information, see Hauschild, V.D., and G.M. Bratt. Prioritizing industrial chemical hazards. Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, Part A 68(2005):857:876. 3 For an excellent review, see M.M. Patel, J.G. Schier, and M.G. Belson. Recognition of illness associated with covert chemical releases. Pediatric Emergency Care 22(2006):592-601. 4 See Appendix D for a sample list of chemicals of concern.
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries chemicals likely targeted for theft or diversion CWC chemicals; explosives and improvised explosive device precursors; and mass Effect Agents and Precursors. chemicals with high acute toxicity (Globally Harmonized System Category 1); and chemicals used in clandestine production of illicit drugs. At the same time, laboratory chemists throughout the world work daily with many potentially hazardous chemicals, including COCs, for legitimate purposes and generally follow the necessary safety procedures for handling and disposal of these chemicals. Chemical laboratories are where chemical research, development, and education take place. Chemical manufacturers also use laboratories for quality control, process monitoring, and analysis related to compliance with government regulations. The quantities of chemicals used in such settings are typically small and pose less risk compared with industrial-scale manufacturing, use, and transport of chemicals. Chemical laboratories in small-scale industrial and academic settings, however, tend to operate independently, have less government and regulatory oversight, and are generally more accessible to the public than large-scale industrial laboratory and manufacturing facilities. Such laboratories thus present a vulnerable target for those seeking to do harm. For example, in 2002 Joseph Konopka (a.k.a. “Dr. Chaos”) was found to be storing over a pound of cyanide compounds and other hazardous chemicals in a tunnel near the Chicago subway system, and at least part of the stores of cyanide were obtained from the campus of the University of Illinois at Chicago.5 The growing security threat of COCs thus presents a new challenge to working with chemicals in the laboratory, especially in small-scale industrial and academic settings. While large-scale industrial manufacturing and use of COCs is a dominant concern in national and international chemical security, use of chemicals at the laboratory scale poses a unique and significant security threat and is the main focus of this report. Developing countries in particular face many challenges with regard to chemical laboratory safety and security. They are generally characterized as having low- to lower-middle-income economic status,6 but they can vary widely in socioeconomic standards and implementation of the rule of law. Some first-rate institutions in developing countries have excellent labora- 5 United States v. Joseph Konopka, U.S. District Court, Criminal Complaint Case Number 02 CR, March 9, 2002, Cook County, Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division; and CNN. com, March 12, 2002. Man allegedly stored cyanide in Chicago subway. http://archives.cnn.com/2002/US/03/12/chicago.cyanide/index.html (accessed December 17, 2009). 6 See the World Bank country classifications: http://data.worldbank.org/about/country-classifications (accessed May 6, 2010).
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries tory safety and security systems in place, and some national governments in developing countries have established policies for occupational safety in the work place.7 However, laboratory safety and security are generally not a high priority in developing countries. In addition, developing countries that do have a legal framework of laws and regulations for chemical safety often lack an adequate and effective system of enforcement. As developing countries become more economically competitive and strive to increase chemistry activity, they face many challenges in improving laboratory safety and security. Safety and security practices are intended to help laboratories carry out their primary functions efficiently, safely, and securely, but improving safety and security is often seen as inhibitory rather than enabling. CURRENT SAFETY AND SECURITY PRACTICES IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES The culture of laboratory safety depends ultimately on the working habits of individual chemists and their sense of teamwork for protection of themselves, their neighbors, and the wider community and environment. … Safety in the laboratory also depends on well-developed administrative structures and supports that extend beyond the laboratory’s walls within the institution. National Research Council. 2005. Prudent Practices in the Laboratory: Handling and Disposal of Chemicals, 1995 (Washington, D.C.: (Washington, D.C.: National Academies Press). This section provides an overview of current chemical laboratory safety and security practices in developing countries, largely focused on the barriers to and needs for improvement. The information presented is based on the collective experience of the committee members and the insightful guest speakers listed in “About This Study,” including several from representative developing countries. Current Safety Practices Chemical laboratories in developing countries have large numbers of students in teaching laboratories, but they typically have a relatively small (although increasing) number of people engaged in high-level research. In general, use of hazardous laboratory chemicals is greater in institutions that offer graduate programs and that engage in basic research; but that is 7 For example, see country policies listed on the International Labor Organization Web site: http://www.ilo.org/public/english/region/asro/bangkok/asiaosh/std_leg/national/indexnat.htm (accessed December 18, 2009).
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries a generalization, and there is a wide variation in such activities and safety practices within and between countries. The increasingly global interconnectivity of science, driven by the proliferation of mobile phones, air travel, e-mail, and the Internet, has resulted in scientists everywhere becoming more aware of laboratory best practices and in some cases the prestige that attends recognition by the international community. This has led some institutions in developing countries to seek to attain certifications in international standards8 (such as ISO 9001, Quality Management Systems standard; ISO 14001, Environmental Management Systems standard; and ISO 17025, general requirements for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories), which has played an important role in including occupational and community safety as a component of the overall standards system. The barriers to and needs for improving laboratory safety practices in developing countries are listed here and described in detail below. Barriers Financial limitations Climate constraints Cultural challenges Needs Institutional safety policy and rules Institutional implementation strategies or plans General safety awareness and training Reporting and compliance processes Waste disposal systems External help and support Barriers to Improving Safety Practices Financial Limitations Financial constraints are among the most important bottlenecks in implementing safety practices in chemical laboratories in developing countries. They affect every aspect of safety plans and implementation, because initial investments and sustained support are required to build and maintain a safety infrastructure. Laboratory buildings are specialized structures, and the addition of safety features increases the costs of planning and construction. In some 8 See International Organization of Standardization at http://www.iso.org/iso/home.htm (accessed December 18, 2009).
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries cases the extra cost may be quite small (2 percent to 3 percent of total capital cost of building the laboratory), but in an effort to save money, new laboratory buildings are often constructed with inadequate safety provisions. Some chemical laboratories are situated on upper floors of high-rise buildings in highly populated urban areas and have no provision for an exit plan or separate chemical stores. The highest parts of some of those buildings are beyond the reach of firefighting ladders. In general, there is little consultation between the chemists, who are the end users of the laboratories, and the architects, builders, and chemical safety experts. Similarly, a sufficient supply of operating fume hoods, fire extinguishers, and other protective equipment requires funding, which is often unavailable. In many teaching laboratories, a large number of students are assigned to work in a single chemical-fume hood, and this makes such equipment largely useless. Financial constraints are largely responsible for unfavorable student-to-teacher ratios in many teaching laboratories (for example, 40:1 in Ethiopia and 25:1 in the Philippines), which not only affect the quality of teaching but also make laboratory safety challenging. Hiring, training, and retaining of safety personnel is difficult in such a financially constrained environment. Many laboratory staff who have attained a high level of proficiency and competence leave academic laboratories for more lucrative positions in industry or even employment abroad. Other laboratory staff may feel they have little choice but to tolerate unsafe jobs because of financial constraints. They are forced to choose between keeping a job and being safe. Climate Constraints Special climatic conditions in many developing countries hinder compliance with safety practices. Many regions of the world experience extremes in weather and have no provision for controlling indoor temperature or humidity other than with the use of ceiling fans and windows. Students in the hot and humid environments of tropical and subtropical regions often do not wear chemical splash goggles or latex gloves because they are uncomfortable. While institutions tend to schedule closures or vacations during extreme weather, appropriate provisions cannot always be made for storing chemicals safely during such conditions. Cultural Challenges Differences in culture have a substantial effect on behavior, including chemical safety and security. Developing countries often have a hierarchical structure in which decisions are made and implemented from the top down. In such a management structure, a large commitment from leader-
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries ship, which is a component in scientific methods and practice, is required before any progress can be made. However, many of those in leadership positions take responsibility without being held accountable. Such a culture can discourage recognition of safe behavior and prevent criticism of unsafe or suspicious conduct by superiors or even peers. Hierarchical management structures thus can inhibit reliance on coworkers to report or prevent breaches in safety or security. Needs for Improving Chemical Laboratory Safety Practices Institutional Safety Policy and Rules Not many institutions in the developing world have specific safety rules and policies. They generally rely on generic safety practices that may not be very clear or known to people who are supposed to follow and implement them. Even where safety policies exist, safety in developing countries tends to depend on personal initiative, and safety practices often deteriorate when a strong advocate for safety is promoted, retires, or loses authority. In some cases, government regulations are targeted at the chemical or manufacturing industries, and many of them are concerned primarily with waste management. However, government agencies tasked to institute and implement the regulations often lack the resources and trained enforcement staff needed to be effective. Most agencies can barely police industry, let alone private and academic laboratories. In addition, the regulations appropriate for large-scale industrial operations are not readily adaptable to academic laboratories. Institutional Implementation Strategies or Plans In many developing countries where rules and regulations exist, universities and R&D institutions often fail to implement them. Part of the failure stems from institutions copying policies verbatim from more developed countries without seeking input from end users who work in the local environments. Working relations are also often poor between the government enforcing agencies and private or state-run institutions. The planning and implementation of safety rules demand a strong sense of responsibility, and long-term commitment from leaders. Academic leaders in developing countries either are not aware of the importance of safety in the workplace or do not have the means to implement safety rules fully. As discussed earlier, academic leaders struggle to get essential funding to run their institutions; after they have paid for salaries and supplies, little funding is available to
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries provide the infrastructure and human resources needed to implement institutional safety plans. General Safety Awareness and Trained Safety Personnel Safety is not on the mainstream academic agenda in many developing countries. It is hardly discussed in meetings of faculty members or managers of chemical laboratories, and there are minimal safety instruction, teaching, or training workshops for safety offices. Faculty and laboratory managers who demonstrate consistently safe behavior typically go unnoticed. Furthermore, aside from a perfunctory orientation, there is almost no formal safety training of students or staff members before they are allowed to work in chemical laboratories. Laboratory safety is not a part of the regular teaching curriculum, except in a few universities. It is more common to find training in content and pedagogy rather than safety. Notably, in many chemistry conferences and congresses throughout the world, not just in developing countries, there is little time devoted to safety topics. As a result, there is a serious lack of appreciation for safe practices. At the faculty level, the notion of academic freedom is often misused to avoid compliance with safety regulations, and faculty members typically cannot be forced to comply with safety rules. Although every chemistry department has faculty members who were educated and trained in Western universities that have higher safety standards, the effect of their training is barely felt. Because safety has very low priority, there is hardly any safety instruction, and there are few training workshops for safety officers for this purpose. Reporting Systems Reporting of incidents (such as chemical spills, fires, and missing supplies) is one of the most difficult components to implement in any safety system. In developing countries, cultural barriers and fear of punitive action, generally lead to failure of reporting incidents. This in turn results in missed opportunities for lessons learned and continuous improvement in safety. Further, the low numbers that are reported give an unwarranted impression that there are no safety issues. The lack of reporting is commonly based on inappropriate definitions. Incidents are “minor’’ if they do not involve major burns or loss of an organ, or a life, and many are not reported. There is no concept of reporting “near escape” incidents (commonly called “near misses”); it is as though the incidents had never happened, so there is no learning that can be shared. However, this is a pervasive problem throughout the world, not just in developing countries.
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries Waste Disposal Systems Many developing countries have no proper waste disposal facilities or systems, or do not know how to implement waste disposal cost-effectively, especially for laboratory chemicals. Organic solvents are disposed of by being poured into the municipal drain system, and solid wastes are generally dumped into garbage spaces or burned in open spaces. Some countries prohibit incinerating organic solvents, but do not provide alternative disposal systems, treatment of chemical waste onsite is rare, and there are no specialized waste disposal companies. In a few institutions, however, waste water from chemical laboratories is collected and treated in campus facilities and recycled for irrigation. Where national regulatory authority exists for working with radioisotopes, government agencies typically collect and dispose of radioactive waste from laboratories. Most developing countries do not have similar arrangements for disposal of other hazardous chemicals. External Help and Support In most developing countries, external help is not always available when it is needed. Fire departments and ambulances may come on call, but they do not always have adequate manpower and equipment or the proper training to handle hazardous chemical emergencies. Further complications arise due to lack of proper emergency preparedness in coordination with academic institutions, especially for specialized situations involving hazardous chemicals. Therefore, institutions are often left to make their own arrangements to handle or not handle emergencies. In some instances universities have their own fire trucks, ambulances, and medical emergency centers, but this is uncommon. Similarly, regulatory agencies equivalent to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency or U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, where they exist, may not have jurisdiction over laboratory-scale operations, or they are ineffective. As a result, there is no external audit of safety practices of chemical laboratories. Current Security Practices On a positive note, most campuses in developing countries have strict entry policies, probably better than most campuses in developed countries. Students must possess valid identification, and vehicles are screened upon entry and exit. Security guards are stationed at entry gates, and roving guards patrol the buildings. However, the purpose is largely to maintain law
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries and order on highly politicized campuses or to prevent theft of equipment, not for security of chemical storage. In teaching settings, access to chemical laboratories and storage areas is often controlled by specialized permits and follows strict protocols for working hours. In research settings, however, students sometimes work alone at night, often without emergency contact information. Increased international communications using e-mail and the Internet, air travel, and telecommunications have also made scientists in all countries much more aware of international agreements, such as the Chemical Weapons Convention, and of best practices for the secure use and storage of chemicals, even on a laboratory scale. However, many chemists throughout the world still do not know about such security practices, and currently there are no certifications in international standards of security like those for safety and environmental protection. Many laboratories in developing countries have basic secure storage of chemicals to prevent theft by outsiders. However, most are in need of procedures to ensure that there is no diversion by individuals working in laboratories or visitors, including friends and relatives. The barriers to and needs for improving chemical security practices in developing countries are listed here and described in detail below. Barriers Financial limitations Bulk purchase of chemicals Cultural challenges Needs Institutional security policies Institutional security management plans, equipment, and services General security awareness Trained and motivated security personnel Reporting systems Barriers to Improving Security Practices Financial Limitations Secure storage of chemicals, especially COCs, requires stringent measures such as a separate building with lockable doors and an alarm system. Such infrastructure is nonexistent in most developing countries, and all chemicals, even organic solvents and peroxides, are generally stored in small storage areas in laboratory buildings or at laboratory benches. Gas
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries cylinders are typically stored just outside laboratories, often on ledges that are exposed to the elements. Bulk Purchase of Chemicals Most of the universities in the developing world are primarily teaching institutions. Very few universities have active research programs and research centers that require exotic and specialized chemicals. As a result, only common chemicals are purchased and stored, often in inadequate departmental facilities. Few universities have central storage facilities especially constructed for chemicals. Common teaching laboratory chemicals are typically procured through open bidding at competitive prices in bulk quantities whenever funds are available. That creates a feast-or-famine situation in which it is often difficult to update inventory and ensure security. Inventory is usually maintained for the financial audit, not the benefit of professors or researchers. The concept of just-in-time use is common in highly industrialized nations but essentially unknown in developing countries. It is not unusual for procurement of a single chemical to take as long as six months. Thus, large quantities of bulk chemicals are routinely stored in academic institutions to prevent shortages while the arrival of an order is awaited. Both the transportation and storage of such large quantities presents a security challenge for any institution. Inventory control is generally in the form of log books or computer-based inventory systems. Chemicals are issued through written requests on prescribed forms, but there is no tracking of chemicals after they are issued to individual laboratories. No record of their use and disposal is kept. Bar codes and radio frequency identification tagging are available in some developing countries but are not commonly used for keeping track of where or how a chemical is used. Chemicals procured by individual faculty members with project funds are often not recorded in the central inventory; faculty members are expected to add them to the central inventory voluntarily but have little incentive to do so. This is also true for laboratories in most developed countries. Most inventory-tracking efforts are geared to the control of purchasing and storage of chemicals and reagents. There is little tracking of substances that are synthesized or isolated in research laboratories. For example, toxins and other bioactive substances may be obtained from natural terrestrial and marine organisms, but there is often no reporting of them until publication in a journal.
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries Cultural Challenges Differences in cultures in developing countries can also affect security practices in the laboratory. Cultural challenges include excessive hierarchy of power, too much trust in others, lack of a culture of sharing, lack of accountability, hiding or not reporting security lapses, frequent visits to the labs by friends and acquaintances, and not recognizing good security practices of others. Needs for Improving Laboratory Security Practices Institutional Security Policies Chemical facility security is rarely treated separately from general security concerns. At both national and institutional levels, there are no plans for security of chemical facilities and storage sites. Vulnerability assessments are rare, and hidden dangers are poorly understood. In the absence of a specialized security strategy, generic security measures are applied to chemical laboratory facilities. In some cases, strict regulations are in place for the procurement of chemicals that are identified as precursors in the manufacture of illicit drugs. One such example is acetone, a very common laboratory solvent. Academic institutions, suppliers, and distributors have to register and secure a license from a drug enforcement agency before they can purchase such chemicals. A similar setup is in place for explosive precursors, for which a license must be obtained from law enforcement agencies. There are, however, malpractices associated with licensing, such as use of an invalid license, obtaining a license through illegal means, or bribing inspectors. Like safety, security depends on personal initiative in many developing countries. Once in a while an administrator who takes security seriously comes along, but security concerns return to being unattended when he or she moves out of the system. Institutional Security Management Plans, Equipment, and Services Even when a security plan does exist in a developing country, the plan usually fails at the implementation stage. Strategies for implementing security plans are generally nonexistent. Concern about security rarely goes beyond preventing ordinary theft by outsiders. Generic security practices are usually implemented in developing countries; they often involve check points at gates, roving patrols, and the stationing of security guards in every building. Security aspects of management of chemicals that may serve as building blocks for extremely hazardous materials that can be used against
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries the public have no priority. Part of the reason is a lack of information, and part is a lack of conviction that such use could occur in one’s institution. General Security Awareness The importance of security is recognized in developing countries, but the threat and danger arising from lack of security of chemical storage facilities is not properly understood. There is little knowledge regarding the security of COCs on campuses in developing countries. Chemists may be aware of the potential of dual-use chemicals, but top administrators have little or no knowledge of the dangers posed by such chemicals. Trained and Motivated Security Personnel Proper security of chemical storage and facilities, especially those with COCs, requires not only proper infrastructure but also adequately trained and motivated staff. In most developing countries, chemical facilities are guarded by security guards who are not informed about hazardous chemicals and the risks posed by their theft and diversion. That is because there is a widespread belief that diversion of chemicals for malevolent purposes is highly unlikely. Security concerns do not rise beyond prevention of ordinary theft. University staff members who are responsible for security of chemical storage are often low-ranking employees who earn very low wages and have little education. In some cases, security personnel have obtained restricted chemicals and used them for illegal purposes. For example, theft of ethanol from chemical stores is common throughout the world. Reporting Systems Lack of good security protocols may result in a failure to report lapses in security. Cultural attitudes may result in an acceptance of the failure to report problems. What constitutes a security breach or problem is often not well defined nor widely disseminated. Persons at all levels of the laboratory do not understand what a reportable incident is and how and to whom to report it. CURRENT EDUCATIONAL OUTREACH EFFORTS IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES International, regional, and national organizations often act as conduits for supplying chemical information, training, and professional guidance to laboratories in developing countries. Such organizations as the Interna-
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries tional Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) have been engaged in those kinds of outreach efforts for many years. The U.S. State Department Chemical Security Engagement Program (CSP) is one of the most active and well-funded programs in place today; it conducts its activities in conjunction with many partnering organizations (including IUPAC and the OPCW) throughout the world. Because CSP is still in its infancy and is seeking to increase its impact, the Department of State called on the National Academies to assist in the CSP’s efforts to promote chemical safety and security in developing countries.9 In this report, the committee examines the dual-use risks posed by toxic industrial chemicals and other hazardous chemicals and provides guidance on a baseline of practices in the handling and storage of hazardous chemicals required to promote safety and security in their use on a laboratory scale in developing countries. In its second task, the committee will be producing educational materials for CSP training. The U.S. Chemical Security Engagement Program In 2007 the Office of Cooperative Threat Reduction in the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation initiated the CSP at Sandia National Laboratories as a component of the Global Threat Reduction programs. These programs are “aimed at reducing the threat posed by terrorist organizations or states of concern seeking to acquire weapons of mass destruction expertise, materials and equipment.”10 As explained by the State Department official at the first committee meeting, at the forefront of the CSP are the goals of engaging chemical professionals in academia and industry, raising awareness about the threat of chemical dual-use, and fostering national and regional improvement in chemical safety and security. The program also wishes to identify chemical safety and security gaps, promote chemical safety and security best practices, and establish cadres of chemical safety and security officers through training workshops and other outreach efforts.11 The CSP engages with countries that are active producers or exporters of industrial chemicals or have growing chemistry capabilities and indus- 9 See Appendix A for the full statement of task. 10 See http://www.csp-state.net/ (accessed October 29, 2009). 11 The educational materials being produced by the committee for CSP to use in its training activities will be delivered separately. They will be based on material generated by this current study (mainly Chapters 3 and 4 and Appendixes F and G) and derived from the forthcoming revised edition of Prudent Practices in the Laboratory: Handling and Management of Chemical Hazards. The educational materials will be distributed in print and electronic format, and will be translated into Arabic, French, and Indonesian.
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries trial and regional security concerns. CSP is currently working with the following countries: Afghanistan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, and the Philippines in South and Southeast Asia and Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Morocco, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen in the Middle East and North Africa. The CSP partners with organizations in those countries and others at the international level (shown in Box S-1). In academia the CSP seeks to develop and implement training activities to reinforce best practices in chemical security and safety in chemistry curricula. As discussed earlier, universities have unique risks that can include lack of safe practices, presence of COCs, improper management and storage of chemicals, and lack of enforcement of safety rules. Through its training activities, the CSP hopes to prepare laboratories in developing countries to avoid the consequences of chemical mismanagement, such as bodily BOX S-1 Current Chemical Security Engagement Program Partners, March 2009 Host governments Universities Chemistry professionals Regional chemical organizations Arab Union of Chemists Federation of Asian Chemical Societies Federation of African Societies of Chemistry National chemical organizations American Chemical Society Indonesian Chemical Society (Himpunan Kimia Indonesia) Malaysian Institute of Chemistry (Institut Kimia Malaysia) International chemical organizations International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry United Nations Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons Chemical industry and industrial organizations American Chemistry Council Chemical Industries Council of Malaysia Chemical Industries Association of the Philippines (Samahan sa Pilipinas ng mga Industriyang Kimika) SOURCE: “Program Overview and Discussion of Study Charge,” Presentation by Marie Ricciardone, U.S. State Department, to the committee on March 2, 2009.
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries injuries or expensive clean-up of laboratory waste. The CSP is currently in the process of establishing chemical safety and security officer networks that will develop modules for hands-on training, work with universities to identify candidates for the networks, and offer a five-day train-the-trainer course that focuses on fundamentals of chemical management and elements of chemical safety and security. The CSP is also partnering with chemical industrial organizations to promote established best practices in chemical security, such as those reflected in the Responsible Care® Security Code and Responsible Care® Management System.12 Chemical industry risks can include theft of unsecured chemicals and improper disposal of chemicals, in addition to many of the risks that academia faces. KEY FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS Developing countries have unique needs, and their safety and security practices and attitudes vary considerably, both among developing countries and between developing countries and developed countries. Many in the international community are addressing safety and security in developing countries, but much more attention is needed to better understand safety and security practices and malpractices, and to strengthen and expand outreach efforts. The CSP has undertaken a unique and valuable outreach effort. There is clearly more to do and more opportunities than the program at its current size can address. The committee recommends that the CSP consider the three main actions outlined below. Chapters 2-4 each provide detailed guidance and are summarized by Recommendations 1-3, respectively. People responsible for implementing safety and security programs will need to read these chapters in their entirety. Recommendation 1: Build strong relationships (Chapter 2). The CSP should continue to develop additional and stronger organizational relationships and networks of chemical safety professionals. This includes expanding existing relationships with the groups listed in Box S-1 and creating new ones with international groups such as the International Program on Chemical Safety, U.N. organizations, and other regional and national organizations. Additional considerations for enhancing safety and security include forging private-public partnerships, building on existing certification and training programs, and encouraging and promoting international standards in chemical security and safety. 12 For more information, see http://www.americanchemistry.com/s_responsiblecare/sec.asp?CID=1298&DID=4841.
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Promoting Chemical Laboratory Safety and Security in Developing Countries Recommendation 2: Establish management systems (Chapter 3). The CSP should provide guidelines for establishing safety and security programs over the life cycle of a chemical, from planning and procurement to ultimate use and final disposal. This should include systematically integrating safety and security into a research institution to anticipate and prevent circumstances that might result in injury, illness, or adverse environmental effects. A critical aspect of such guidelines being successfully implemented is the commitment and support it should have from top leaders in the institution. Recommendation 3: Comply with rules, programs, and policies (Chapter 4). The CSP should encourage institutions, organizations, and industries in developing countries to develop clearly defined policies for enforcing and complying with safety and security rules. The policies should include establishing programs for regular inspections, a method for reporting safety and security incidents, investigations, follow-up, enforcement, and systems for reward and recognition, which will require hiring and maintaining the appropriate level of trained safety and security staff (as outlined in Chapter 4). In addition, the CSP should assist laboratory managers in developing countries with identifying noncompliant behaviors and finding ways to address them directly through education and training.