Closing Plenary - OEWG12

Dais during closing plenary

Photo Credit: Kei Ohno Woodall

Delegates flew through the outstanding agenda items on the final day of the resumed session of the 12th meeting of the Open-ended Working Group of the Basel Convention (OEWG-12). With the Strategic Matters Contact Group having concluded its work the previous evening, all that was left was to conclude the work of the Technical Matters Contact Group and reconvene in plenary to conclude the proceedings.

During the Technical Matters Contact Group, delegates tackled the two remaining agenda items on the updated technical guidelines:

  • on the environmentally sound management (ESM) of wastes consisting of, containing or contaminated with persistent organic pollutants (POPs), it was decided the dispute about land application and new references to co-incineration would be discussed by the Small Intersessional Working Group (SIWG) before the 15th Conference of the Parties to the Basel Convention (COP-15); and
  • for the identification and ESM of plastic wastes and for their disposal, delegates resolved several matters the SIWG had been unable to resolve due to time constraints, and it was announced that SIWG co-leads China, Japan and the UK will work to further update the guidelines and would accept further comments until 28 April 2022, and then offer a revised draft as a conference room paper (CRP) to be presented to COP-15.

When plenary reconvened, delegates swiftly adopted decisions and made recommendations to COP-15 in the afternoon to address the outstanding agenda items. The three Contact Groups reported to plenary on their work during OEWG-12. Delegates then moved to finalize the outstanding agenda items, including on:

  • The evaluation of the Convention’s Strategic Framework and possible next steps;
  • Development of guidelines for ESM;
  • National Reporting, including guidance for preparing national inventories on plastic waste, obsolete pesticides and pesticide-container waste, and waste batteries containing lithium;
  • Updated technical guidelines on the ESM of wastes consisting of, containing or contaminated with mercury or mercury compounds;
  • Updated technical guidelines on incineration on land and on specially engineered landfills;
  • Technical guidelines on ESM of POPs pesticides and of wastes consisting of, containing or contaminated with perfluorooctane sulfonic acid, its salts and perfluorooctane sulfonyl fluoride and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), its salts and PFOA-related compounds;
  • Consultation with the Committee Administering the Mechanism for Promoting Implementation and Compliance on working to clarify interpretation of Convention paragraphs to improve their implementation;
  • Legal clarity on waste electrical and electronic equipment entries in Annex IV and entries A1180 and B1110 in Annexes VIII and IX to the Basel Convention, which mirror each other; and
  • The Convention’s Partnership Programme, particularly the follow-up to the Partnership for Action on Computing Equipment.

Following the adoption of the report, the meeting was gaveled to a close at 4:41 pm EAT.

The Earth Negotiations Bulletin summary and analysis of this meeting will be available on Saturday, 9 April 2022, on this webpage.

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