Working Group on PRTRs
The Protocol on Pollutant Release and Transfer Registers entered into force on 8 October 2009, having secured its 16th ratification by a Member State of the United Nations.
Establishment of the Working Group
The adoption of the Protocol was accompanied by a resolution of the Signatures, which inter alia recommended the establishment of a Working Group on PRTRs to prepare for the entry into force of the Protocol under the auspices of the Meeting of the Parties to the Convention. The Meeting of the Parties confirmed the establishment of the Working Group along the lines indicated in the resolution.
Under its mandate, the Working Group is charged with identifying and carrying out activities that need to be undertaken pending the entry into force of the Protocol, in particular to prepare for the implementation of the Protocol through the preparation of guidance documents and the sharing of information and experience gained.
It further is charged with reporting periodically to the Meeting of the Parties to the Convention on progress made in respect of the ratification of the Protocol and steps taken towards its implementation, and to prepare for the first session of the Meeting of the Parties to the Protocol.
At its sixth meeting (24-26 November 2008), the Working Group on PRTR mandated the Bureau to prepare a draft declaration for consideration for adoption at the first session of the Meeting of the Parties to the Protocol (MOPP-1) to be held in Geneva on 20-22 April 2010.
The First Session of the Meeting of the Parties to the PRTR Protocol (MOPP-1) was held on 20-22 April 2010. At MOPP-1 the subsidiaries bodies to the PRTR Protocol were established. In light of this, from now onwards all activities related to the PRTR Protocol are undertaken by these bodies under the supervision of the MOPP. For MOPP-1 information please click here.
Delegations were invited to review this draft and submit comments to the secretariat by 30 September 2009.
The Working Group finalized the texts of draft decisions for consideration by the Meeting of the Parties at its first session. The Working Group agreed on scheduling the first session of the meeting of the Parties and a procedure for preparing the agenda and a declaration for the meeting.
The fifth meeting of the Working Group on PRTRs was held on 22-24 October 2007 in Geneva. The Working Group reviewed the revised draft decisions on rules of procedure, a compliance mechanism and financial arrangements, and give a first reading to draft decisions on establishment of an ad hoc working group of the Parties, reporting requirements and a work programme under the Protocol.
Delegates discussed the timing of the first session of the Meeting of the Parties to the Protocol, in light of the progress expected to be made toward ratification of the instrument by the end of 2007.
Mr. Bob Boyce (United Kingdom) was elected to serve as a second Vice-Chair.
The fourth meeting of the Working Group on Pollutant Release and Transfer Registers was held on 14-16 February 2007 in Geneva, to further preparations for the entry into force of the Kiev Protocol on PRTRs to the Aarhus Convention. The Working Group reviewed draft decisions on rules of procedure, a compliance mechanism and financial arrangements, as well as discussed the establishment of subsidiary bodies, capacity building and a reporting mechanism under the Protocol. It also adopted a guidance to implementation of the Protocol.
Official documents of the meeting are available English, French and Russian.
Earlier, the Working Group had established a Contact Group to review draft decisions on rules of procedure and a compliance review mechanism to the instrument, and reviewed options for establishment of subsidiary bodies and financial arrangements. The fourth meeting of the Contact Group was held on 18-19 June 2007 at the Palais des Nations, in Geneva.
Four delegations had submitted comments on new proposals on rules of procedure and a compliance review mechanism developed at the Group's last meeting (during the fourth meeting of the Working Group).
The third meeting of the Working Group on Pollutant Release and Transfer Registers was held on 17-19 May 2006, to further preparations for the entry into force of the Protocol on PRTRs to the Aarhus Convention.
Earlier, Russian and French languages versions of the draft Guidance may be found among the official documents of the second meeting (ECE/MP.PP/AC.1/2005/5 through ECE/MP.PP/AC.1/2005/14) and the Annex to the Report of the second meeting (ECE/MP.PP/AC.1/2005/2).
Chairman's 2005 report on preparation for entry into force
At the second Meeting of the Parties to the Aarhus Convention (25-27 May 2005, Almaty, Kazakhstan), the Chair of the Working Group, Mr. Karel Blaha (Czech Republic), reported on the progress made toward preparation for entry into force of the Kiev Protocol on PRTRs. Measures undertaken by the European Community, notably the preparation and possible adoption of an EU regulation to establish a European PRTR in line with the requirements of the Protocol, were expected to speed up the process of ratification.
The work that had been done was welcomed by many delegations of the Meeting who especially found the a draft guidance document on implementation of the Protocol to be a clear and constructive document to help with implementation of the instrument.
There was general support expressed for the development of separate rules of procedure and a separate compliance mechanism, bearing in mind the open character of the Protocol and its specific nature, while noting that the rules of procedure and compliance mechanism of the Convention provided a good starting point. Several delegations reported on their capacity-building activities in South East Europe (SEE) and EECCA.
For more information on the activities of the Working Group prior to the the second meeting of the Parties, continue here.
For more information on the negotiations of the PRTR Protocol (2000-2003), please click here.