The Second Meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Working Group (OEWG) to Review and Assess Measures to Address the Global Issue of Mercury convened for its final day on Friday, 10 October at UNEP headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya.
During the morning, delegates considered the draft report to the Governing Council (GC) (UNEP(DTIE)/Hg/OEWG.2/CRP.10). After protracted discussion on the advantages and disadvantages of a legally-binding instrument and voluntary measures, plenary adjourned pending redrafting of the report by the Secretariat. Later in the morning, delegates agreed on the amended common elements of a mercury framework (UNEP(DTIE)/Hg/OEWG.2/CRP.9/Rev.1).
During the early afternoon, delegates turned their attention to the draft report of the meeting (UNEP(DTIE)/Hg/OEWG.2/L.1 and Add.1). The report was adopted with minor amendments.
Subsequently, delegates discussed the revised draft report to the GC (UNEP(DTIE)/Hg/OEWG.2/CRP.10/Rev.1) and adopted it with minor amendments. The report summarizes the advantages and disadvantages of a legally-binding instrument and of voluntary measures for the consideration of the Governing Council.
Delegates paid tribute to John Whitelaw, Deputy Chief, UNEP Chemicals Branch, who retires after this meeting, and expressed gratitude for his commitment to the chemicals agenda. Australia paid the final, somewhat colloquial, tribute, stating it was understood that John was about to “up stumps and shoot through, but digger we will miss you.”
Chair Roberts gavelled the meeting to a close at 6:33pm.