Report of main proceedings for 7 November 2018
30th Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer
The preparatory segment of the Montreal Protocol MOP 30 convened for its third day on Wednesday, 7 November 2018, in Quito, Ecuador. In the morning, delegates considered:
- Review of the terms of reference, composition and balance as well as fields of expertise required of the assessment panels and their subsidiary bodies;
- Senior expert and other nominations by parties to the Technology and Economic Assessment Panel (TEAP); and
- Membership of Montreal Protocol bodies for 2019.
In the afternoon, the Budget Committee and contact groups met. In evening plenary, delegates heard reports back from the contact groups and forwarded a number of decisions to the High-Level Segment (HLS). They also considered Harmonized System customs codes for hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) and clorofluorocarbons (CFCs) substitutes, and a draft decision proposed by several countries on progress by the Multilateral Fund (MLF) Executive Committee (ExCom) in the development of guidelines for financing the phase-down of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).
Reports from Contact Groups and Informal Consultations
In morning plenary, Destruction Technologies Contact Group Co-Chair Mikkel Sørensen (Denmark) reported that the group was discussing a draft decision to be forwarded to the HLS. In evening plenary, contact group Co-Chair Bitul Zulhasni (Indonesia) reported that the group had finalized its work and presented UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/CRP.6. Delegates agreed to forward the CRP to the HLS.
Data Reporting Contact Group Co-Chair Martin Sirois (Canada) said that the group would need more time to finalize the data reporting forms related to HFC-123.
In morning plenary, Adjustments Contact Group Co-Chair Alain Wilmart (Belgium) reported progress in further refining the text forwarded from OEWG 40. At the request of OEWG Co-Chair Almatouq, AUSTRALIA introduced its proposal with Canada (UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/CRP.5) to add HCFCs to the global laboratory and analytical use (LAU) exemption. The CRP was referred to the Adjustments Contact Group. In evening plenary, Co-Chair Agustin Guevara (Mexico) said clarifications and additions were made to the consolidated proposals by Australia, Canada, US and the Russian Federation, but the contact group will need an additional session to complete discussions.
In morning plenary, the US reported on a proposal with Australia, Canada, the EU, Nigeria and Norway on future availability of halons and their alternatives. COLOMBIA requested consultations with the proponents for a possible amendment regarding Article 5 party interests in halon recovery. In evening plenary, the US reported the proposal (UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/CRP.3/Rev.1) had been revised to request the TEAP to identify specific needs for halon, other sources of recoverable halon, and opportunities for recycling halon in Article 5 and non-Article 5 parties. Delegates forwarded the CRP to the HLS.
In evening plenary, Energy Efficiency Contact Group Co-Chair Patrick McInerney (Australia) asked for more time to finalize work on the African Group CRP on access of Article 5 parties to energy-efficient technologies in the refrigeration air conditioning and heat pump (RACHP) sector (UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/CRP.2) after completing a first reading.
Review of the Terms of Reference, Composition and Balance as well as Fields of Expertise Required of the Assessment Panels and their Subsidiary Bodies
Co-Chair Newberg introduced this item, noting a draft decision based on a CRP was developed during OEWG 40 (UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/3). INDIA noted that the CRP was produced in response to the new challenges that Article 5 parties face as a result of the Kigali Amendment, including, inter alia, more focus on energy efficiency and liaising with other bodies and funding institutions. He stated that given the guidance that the TEAP and its Technical Options Committees (TOCs) provide to parties, there is need to re-consider the TEAP terms of references (ToRs); and asked the Ozone Secretariat to develop an information paper summarizing the expertise needed for the TEAP for OEWG 41 with input from parties.
BAHRAIN, LEBANON, JORDAN, NIGERIA, MOROCCO, and the FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA (FSM) supported the CRP.
AUSTRALIA, CANADA, the US and the EU noted that the CRP specified revising the ToRs of the TEAP; however, parties presenting this CRP in plenary mentioned revisions needed for the ToRs of other assessment panels. The parties also questioned the request for the Ozone Secretariat to produce an information paper on this item given that the TEAP provides regular updates on its expertise matrix and needs.
BURKINA FASO called on the Secretariat to provide a summary of the information needed for parties to discuss this issue. Supporting the proposal, SYRIA and YEMEN stressed the need for regional balance. SAUDI ARABIA said the review should address expertise required for the implementation of the Kigali Amendment. Co-Chair Newberg proposed, and parties supported, the establishment of an informal group to further discuss this issue.
Consideration of Senior Expert and Other Nominations by Parties to the TEAP
Co-Chair Newberg introduced this issue (UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/2/Add.1, and UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/INF/6), noting prior discussions at OEWG 40 including the ToRs for membership to the TEAP, and highlighted the number of senior experts on the TEAP as between two and four. The US noted that the number of senior expert nominations exceed four, calling for further discussions. AUSTRALIA, supported by CANADA, stressed that nominations should be guided by the expertise needed on the TEAP, and noted that the workload presented is an opportunity to streamline the TEAP’s annual update report. The EU reiterated the need to adhere to the ToRs. Delegates agreed to forward this matter to the informal group on ToR review.
Consideration of the Membership of Montreal Protocol Bodies for 2019
The Secretariat highlighted that not all regions had submitted their nominations and asked them to do so. Co-Chair Almatouq drew attention to the proposal by Armenia and Bosnia and Herzegovina on behalf of the region of Eastern Europe and Central Asia (UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/CRP.4) to change representation under the ExCom to include eight Article 5 parties and eight non-Article 5 parties. BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA explained how ExCom seats would be allocated. The RUSSIAN FEDERATION asked for clarification on the difference between this proposal, and the UN regional group and sub-regional classifications. The US highlighted that there are other ways to ensure equal representation.
GRENADA, SAMOA and BARBADOS noted the regional imbalance on the ExCom also affects them so they would be keen to participate in discussions to find a solution.
CANADA acknowledged that this is an important issue, but is a delicate matter, and it is worth exploring other ways to achieve regional balance without changing the membership of the ExCom. ARMENIA responded it is interested to learn from Canada how this can be achieved.
JORDAN, MEXICO and GEORGIA supported the CRP. The Co-Chairs proposed that the presenters of this CRP continue consultations on this matter.
Compliance and Data Reporting Issues Considered by the Implementation Committee
Miruza Mohamed, President of the Implementation Committee (ImpCom) presented a summary of the 60th and 61st meetings of the ImpCom, noting that the agendas of both meetings were light due to the high level of compliance, and highlighting that with the Kigali Amendment coming into force in 2019, the Committee will have more to consider. Co-Chair Almatouq noted that the CRPs from the ImpCom will be forwarded to the HLS as a package.
JORDAN proposed changing the language related to Yemen’s non-compliance to reflect the difficulties in reporting due to the conflict in the country. Ozone Secretariat Legal Advisor Gilbert Bankobeza noted that Yemen would need to report their difficulties to the Secretariat. YEMEN reported that the country had been in touch with the Secretariat on this issue, and was in the process of submitting a letter to the Secretariat. Co-Chair Almatouq noted that draft decisions (UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/CRP.1) would be forwarded to the HLS, and that the discussion in plenary would be recorded in the meeting report.
Update on the Situation of the Caribbean Islands Affected by Hurricanes (decision XXIX/19)
Co-Chair Newberg called for a report on this issue (UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/2). GRENADA presented reports from Dominica, Antigua and Barbuda, and Bahamas, noting that Dominica is still experiencing data-reporting challenges, but that the latter two will be able to meet their obligations under the Protocol. Co-Chair Newberg noted that this will be recorded in the meeting report.
Safety Standards for RACHP Systems and Appliances: The EU said that the purpose of this item (UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/INF/2) was to highlight the work of the Secretariat in outlining safety standards to ensure parties could meet their obligations under the Kigali Amendment in the most cost-effective manner, noting the need for the Protocol to be technologically neutral in its consideration of effective refrigeration technologies. CHINA pointed out that Article 5 parties need to be selective when considering alternative technologies. ZAMBIA suggested that the Secretariat work with the UN Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods on safety standards. SAUDI ARABIA supported maintaining or raising the safety standards.
Harmonized System Customs Codes for HCFC and CFC Substitutes: The EU welcomed the Ozone Secretariat work with the World Customs Organization (WCO) on standardized customs codes for substances and blends which should help combat illegal trade in substances controlled under the Montreal Protocol (UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/INF/7). He noted that the codes would be up for adoption by WCO in June 2019 and asked all parties to liaise with their customs authorities to urge support for adoption. The US added that if adopted in June 2019, the new codes would enter into effect on 1 January 2022.
Unexpected Emissions of Trichlorofluoromethane (CFC-11)
Co-Chair Newberg reopened this agenda item for further comments. The US said it looked forward to more studies on this issue in 2019 and emphasized transparency is key, calling on all parties to share information on CFC-11 to build confidence in Protocol institutions. AUSTRALIA highlighted that decisions need to be based on additional data.
Progress by the MLF ExCom in the Development of Guidelines for Financing the Phase-down of HFCs (decision XXVIII/2)
INDIA reported on a CRP it submitted together with Argentina, Bahrain, Brazil, Lebanon and Saudi Arabia (UNEP/OzL.Pro.30/CRP.8). CHINA, BURKINA FASO, FSM, RWANDA, PERU and SOUTH AFRICA supported the draft decision. Parties urged the ExCom to develop these guidelines in a transparent way and CHINA and FSM asked the ExCom to expedite these guidelines.
The EU, the US and CANADA asked for more time to reflect on the CRP and report its observations and questions to plenary tomorrow.
In the Corridors
On Wednesday, delegates engaged in testy discussions in plenary during their consideration of the membership of Montreal Protocol bodies for 2019. In an unexpectedly long debate around the membership of the Executive Committee of the Multilateral Fund, Armenia’s call for a permanent seat at the table for Eastern Europe and Central Asia drew mixed reactions. Parties from the same region groups had differing positions on the need to review the historical composition of the ExCom, which has been working over 25 years under the same structure. Some saw this request as a more general call to restructure the bodies to ensure adequate representation from all regions. Others were concerned that this may ultimately affect funding flows for the implementation of the Protocol. “Resolving this is going to require a very delicate compromise so we can keep the Ozone Family together,” said one delegate.