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Industrial Accidents


Industrial accidents can have severe consequences on human health and the environment, including in other affected countries. The accidents in Schweizerhalle, Switzerland, and Baia Mare, Romania, have brought this message home.  The Convention on the Transboundary Effects of Industrial Accidents helps Parties to prevent industrial accidents that can have transboundary effects and to prepare for, and respond to, accidents if they occur. Read more

In focus

During the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, the secretariat to the Industrial Accidents Convention maintains business continuity, working in the office and remotely. Intergovernmental activities are in full speed as we prepare for the 11th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (CoP-11), to be held in Geneva, 7-9 December 2020 and online (as hybrid meeting)- with the meeting logistics and conduct adapted to secure the health and safety of its participants. The Conference will be preceded by an online  seminar on mine tailings safety (1 December 2020) and an advance CoP-11 online information session (30 October 2020).

Whereas some capacity-development activities had to be postponed, cooperation with the beneficiary countries of the Assistance and Cooperation programme continues: The Project on supporting countries of Central Asia in strengthening the safety of mine tailings has begun in 2020. The implementation of the new Project on National Policy Dialogues for Industrial Safety in Central Asia (Phase I: Launch) has started in August 2020. Other core and non-core activities have also been pursued, including on NATECH, risk assessment and the consultation of the Points of Contact to the IAN system.

The secretariat is developing an Information Repository of Good Practices and Lessons Learned in Land-Use Planning and Industrial Safety, together with the European Investment Bank (EIB) and in cooperation with the UNECE’s Committee on Urban Development, Housing and Land Management, the Convention on Environmental Assessment in a Transboundary Context, its Protocol on Strategic Environmental Assessment, the Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters and the Protocol on Pollutant Release and Transfer Registers. We encourage submissions of relevant good practices and lessons learned with respect to land-use planning, industrial safety, (strategic) environmental assessments, disaster risk reduction and/or public information/participation for inclusion in the information repository, by 21st September 2020, to Ms. Rebecca Wardle, Consultant to the EIB, rebeccawardle.consulting@gmail.com (submissions in English) and Ms. Zhanara Kubler, Assistant Programme Management Officer, zhanara.kubler@un.org (submissions in Russian). The Questionnaire and Criteria for submission are available in English and in Russian (Questionnaire E R; Criteria E R). The Repository will go live at the UNECE webpage before CoP-11.

Furthermore, the Subregional Workshop on Land-use Planning and Industrial Safety for South-Eastern Europe will now be held in Belgrade, Serbia on 27-29 October 2021. As a preparatory session for the workshop next year, the secretariat will also host an online teaser event for experts and participants to the workshop on the morning of 21 October 2020. Please find more information about the online teaser event here.