Delegates to the 34th Meeting of the Parties (MOP 34) of the Montreal Protocol shifted gears on Thursday. The broader policy discussions of the high-level segment took center stage even as negotiations continued in contact groups. Heads of delegations shared details of how they have successfully implemented their obligations, described challenges that will need to be addressed in coming years, and outlined their ambitions for future work under the Protocol.
In the morning, delegates elected officers for MOP 34 by acclamation, including Hassan Mubarak (Bahrain) as President. With thanks to outgoing President Samuel Paré, MOP 34 President Mubarak guided delegates through the remainder of their agenda for the day. President Mubarak also fulfilled his role as Chair of the Executive Committee (ExCom) of the Multilateral Fund (MLF), reporting on the ExCom’s intersessional work and highlighting the work of the MLF’s implementing agencies.
A high-level roundtable on the theme “Montreal Protocol @35: The Kigali Amendment and its potential impact on climate” convened with panelists representing both governments and industry. Moderated by Mona Nemer, Chief Science Advisor of Canada, panelists shared perspectives on how the legacy of successful partnership between government and industry under the Montreal Protocol can be taken forward into work implementing the Kigali Amendment.
In the afternoon, the co-chairs of the assessment panels presented their forthcoming 2022 assessment reports. Experts highlighted the state of the science in their respective areas of responsibility and summarized scientific findings, including on: the state of ozone depletion, viability of alternatives to hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), and effects of ultraviolet radiation on human health and ecosystems.
While plenary addressed these high-level agenda items in the afternoon, contact groups continued to work in parallel, with the aim of resolving outstanding issues by noon on Friday. While the high-level segment will continue its work Friday morning, President Mubarak reminded delegates that the segment would suspend its work at some point to allow the preparatory segment to reconvene and close its agenda. Conclusion of the preparatory segment’s work will pave the way for the high-level segment to take critical decisions to guide the next phase of work for the Montreal Protocol.
In the evening, delegates earned a respite from their intensive work as they were invited by the Ozone Secretariat to a reception celebrating the 35th anniversary of the Montreal Protocol. With a relaxing jazz band setting the tone for the evening, participants enjoyed a “Montreal Protocol 35th anniversary” cake as they took the opportunity to unwind with their colleagues.