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Countries share ozone protection experiences

Experts and signatories to the Montreal Protocol have met to share challenges and lessons learned following efforts in their countries to phase out ozone-harming substances. The meeting focused on plans to phase-out hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) found in refrigerants and took place on 13-15 October in Minsk, Belarus.


During the event, Belarus stated that it was confident of achieving a 90% reduction in HCFCs compared to 1986 for example. This was achieved partly thanks to laws such as those banning the import of products containing ozone depleting substances (ODS) that are harmful to the ozone and record keeping for equipment with more than 3kg of refrigerant.


Moldova reported that it is continuing to harmonise its ODS laws with those of the EU and that imports of HCFC equipment are decreasing.


Meanwhile, Armenia was among countries that expressed a need for an appropriate way to dispose of the ozone-harming waste it has collected, whereby the Basel Convention covering its movement and disposal must be respected.


Several countries highlighted the importance of close cooperation with national stakeholders and relevant ministries, such as those for Industry, Environment and Economy.


For the first time, UNEP’s Sustainable Life Styles, Cities and Technologies branch furthermore presented the concept of public procurement policies as a way of promoting environmentally-sound technologies.


UNEP’s Regional Ozone Network for Europe and Central Asia together with the Belarussian Environment Ministry, the country’s refrigeration association ‘Microclimate and Cold’, the United Nations Development Programme and the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation.


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