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Input to Preparatory Process
Input to the Objectives and substantive theme of the Conference

A/C.2/68/L.67 (Para 13) - Invites participants in the meetings of the Preparatory Committee to send written inputs on the objectives and substantive theme of the Conference to the Secretariat in advance of the first meeting of the Committee, and invites the Secretariat to make them available electronically;

Document
Contribution to the first meeting of the Preparatory Committee
for the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States

Submission by the Ozone Secretariat


Introduction
1. The Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone layer is hailed as the most successful multilateral environmental treaty in the history of the United Nations. Its many successes are underpinned by its universal ratification and implementation of all its objectives by the Parties. The small island developing States (SIDS) are parties to this Protocol and have actively contributed to its success. The SIDS have also been active players in the search for solution to emerging challenges in the implementation this Protocol. It is in this context that at their 25th meeting in October 2013, the Parties to the Montreal Protocol adopted decision XXV/9, annexed to this note, on the implementation of the Montreal Protocol with regard to small island developing States.

2. In adopting decision XXV/9, the Parties recalled that of the 197 parties to the Montreal Protocol, 39 are recognized by the United Nations as SIDS. The Parties also noted the reaffirmation of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development that SIDS remained a special case for sustainable development in view of their unique and particular vulnerabilities, including their small size, remoteness, narrow resource and export base, and exposure to global environmental challenges and external economic shocks. They further noted the importance of phasing out hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) through transitioning to climate friendly alternatives and requested the Ozone Secretariat, inter alia, to liaise with the organizers of the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States with the view to promoting discussions on the challenges in the implementation of the Montreal Protocol.

3. Against this background, this note highlights the successes and challenges in the implementation of the Montreal Protocol and their relevance to the sustainable development of SIDS in the context of the outcome document of the Inter-regional preparatory meeting for the Third International Conference on SIDS held in Barbados in August 2013 (hereafter referred to as the Barbados outcome document) .


Montreal Protocol Successes

4. Implementation of the Montreal Protocol has resulted to date in the reduction of global production and consumption of controlled ozone-depleting substances (ODS) by over 98 per cent. Global phase-out of a number of substances harmful to the atmosphere, such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), halons and carbon tetrachloride, was achieved by 2010. Most SIDS are classified as developing countries under the Protocol and a majority of them were able to phase-out ozone depleting substances well ahead of schedule with the technical and financial assistance provided by the Protocol’s Multilateral Fund (MLF). The remaining ODS, mainly HCFCs, will be phased-out gradually in the next two decades.

5. Recent scientific assessment of the state of the ozone layer, including global observations, continued to show important decreases in atmospheric levels of ODS. With full implementation of the Protocol the ozone layer is expected to return to pre-1980 levels by around the middle of this century, thus preventing large-scale environmental impacts. In terms of human health, the global community will avoid millions of cases of skin cancer and eye cataracts, saving trillions of dollars in healthcare. Large reductions in the growth and productivity of plants and aquatic organisms and possible adverse changes to the ecosystems have also been avoided.

6. Since ozone-depleting substances are also greenhouse gases, implementation of the Montreal Protocol is estimated to have avoided greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to more than 135 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide, thus contributing significantly to climate change mitigation, an issue of particular concern to SIDS.

7. Important factors behind the success of the Protocol include the application of two principles of international environmental law, namely, the precautionary principle and common but differentiated responsibility. Under the former principle, Governments have been taking measures to prevent increased ozone depletion whenever science pointed to threats to the ozone layer even in the absence of hard evidence. Among measures taken was the ban of identified ODS before they were ever commercially produced. The principle of common but differentiated responsibility has been applied in instances such as allowing developing countries a 10-15 year grace period in the ODS phase-out schedules and requiring developed countries to contribute funds to enable provision of financial, institutional and technical support to developing countries for their ODS phase-out. In this regard, the role of the Protocol’s efficient compliance mechanism and the Multilateral Fund which supports developing countries through its implementing agencies including the UNEP-driven Compliance Assistance Programme, have been instrumental.

8. It is evident that the Montreal Protocol encompasses many of the enabling factors that are highlighted in the Barbados outcome document as important for the sustainable development of SIDS (e.g. financial assistance, capacity building, technology transfer, institutional support, data collection and management). These factors have been key to the successful implementation of the Protocol by developing countries, including the SIDS, and have been mentioned as a possible model for tackling other global environmental and sustainable development challenges.


Challenges under the Montreal Protocol particularly in relation to small island developing States

9. Some challenges in the implementation of the Montreal Protocol that are of particular concern to SIDS are highlighted in the following paragraphs:

(a) Phase-out of HCFCs through transitioning to safe and climate friendly/energy efficient alternatives

10. HCFCs, used primarily in air conditioning appliances, refrigeration equipment and foam manufacturing, comprise the bulk of the remaining ODS and are to be gradually phased-out globally in the next two decades. The use of ODS in air conditioning and refrigeration equipment by SIDS is critical in their socio-economic life since it affects a number of sectors including fisheries, food security and safety, tourism and buildings. However, as the 2012 UN conference on Sustainable Development recognized in its outcome document “The future we want”, the phase-out of ozone-depleting HCFCs has been resulting in a rapid increase in the use and release of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) as alternative substitutes. HFCs are ozone-friendly but possess high global-warming potential (GWP) contributing to climate change. A major challenge is, therefore, to avoid replacing HCFCs with high-GWP HFCs but achieve the HCFC phase-out through the adoption of technically and economically feasible alternatives that are safe, climate friendly and energy efficient.

11. Since 2009 Parties to the Montreal Protocol have been considering modalities for amending the Protocol to control the consumption and production of HFCs. Discussions on this issue are on-going.

12. In paragraph 68 of the Barbados outcome document, the SIDS declared their support for a gradual phase down in the consumption and production of HFCs and noted that they were exploring the use of the Montreal Protocol in that regard.

(b) Prevention of illegal trade in ozone-depleting substances

13. As the continuing phase-out of ODS further constrains their supply, the temptation to make money through illegal trade in such substances can be expected to increase and thus necessitating enhanced efforts to address this problem. In this regard, establishment of partnerships and technical cooperation among institutions regulating the ozone layer protection and Customs regimes as well as institutions dealing with the management of chemicals and hazardous waste is of major importance.

(c) Treatment of ozone-depleting substances on board ships

14. Several SIDS have raised important issues associated with the attribution of ODS supplied to national and foreign flagged ships, calling for a standard and effective approach to be followed by all parties. If not properly treated and monitored, such trade in ODS could place many parties, including SIDS, in non-compliance with their Protocol obligations and provide loopholes for illegal trade. This issue is yet to be fully addressed by the Parties to the Montreal Protocol.

(d) Environmentally-sound management of unwanted ODS

15. Although the production and consumption of ODS has been reduced, the management of unwanted ODS held by industrial and commercial users and which are stored in containers and installed in old refrigeration and air-conditioning equipment remains a challenge. To prevent emissions of those ODS, it is critical that unwanted ODS are properly recovered and ultimately destroyed. It has been estimated that the global amount of unwanted ODS is about 5.4 million tonnes of ODS and associated annual emissions are about 2.3 billion tonnes CO2 equivalent per year. However, in managing stocks of unwanted ODS, countries face many challenges, including economic, logistical, and legal barriers. This is especially true in developing countries, where resources are limited. Although management of unwanted ODS is not a requirement under the Protocol, the Parties are concerned and have been addressing this matter over the years. Coordination of actions among the ozone and chemicals-related regimes to prevent emissions from leaking into the atmosphere would be critical.

16. It is hoped that the challenges faced by SIDS in implementing the Montreal Protocol will be duly considered at the Third International conference on SIDS and during its preparatory process.


Annex

Decision XXV/9: Implementation of the Montreal Protocol with regard to small island developing States

Recalling that, of the 197 parties to the Montreal Protocol, 39 are recognized by the United Nations as small island developing States,

Noting that the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from 20 to 22 June 2012, recognized in its outcome document, “The future we want”, that the phase-out of ozone-depleting substances was resulting in a rapid increase in the use and release of high global warming-potential hydrofluorocarbons to the environment,

Recognizing decision XIX/6, in which the parties agreed to accelerate the phase-out of hydrochlorofluorocarbons and encouraged parties to promote the selection of alternatives thereto that minimized environmental impact, in particular impact on climate, as well as meeting other health, safety and economic considerations,

Noting that the outcome document of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development reaffirmed that small island developing States remained a special case for sustainable development in view of their unique and particular vulnerabilities, including their small size, remoteness, narrow resource and export base, and exposure to global environmental challenges and external economic shocks,

To request the Ozone Secretariat to liaise with the organizers of the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States, to be held in Apia from 1 to 4 September 2014, with a view to promoting discussions on the challenges associated with the implementation of the Montreal Protocol, and to report to the parties on the outcome of that liaison at the thirty-fourth meeting of the Open-ended Working Group.


Statements
Document
Statement at the first Meeting of the Preparatory Committee for the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States

Ozone Secretariat



Co-chairs, Excellencies, Distinguished Delegates,

The Ozone Secretariat for the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone layer is pleased to address this first preparatory committee meeting for the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States to be held in September this year.

Considering the importance of this meeting in determining the substantive theme of the conference, the Ozone Secretariat wishes to highlight the good work done by the Small Island Developing States in implementing the Montreal Protocol to date and the relevance of the accomplished achievements and emerging challenges to the outcome of the Inter-regional preparatory meeting that was held in Barbados in August last year. We also wish to convey an important mandate entrusted to the Ozone Secretariat by the Parties to the Montreal Protocol pertaining to the challenges faced by SIDS in implementing the Protocol.

Co-Chairs,

The Montreal Protocol has been ratified universally and, encompassing time-specific benchmarks for the phase-out of the consumption and production of ozone-depleting substances, has managed to achieve to date a global reduction in such substances of more than 98 per cent. The SIDS have been active players in the phase-out of many harmful substances, such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), and most of them managed to do so well ahead of the required schedules. As a consequence of this global reduction, atmospheric levels of ozone-depleting substances are decreasing and estimates show that full implementation will result in the recovery of the ozone layer by around the middle of this century. Thus, large-scale adverse impacts of ozone depletion on human health and ecosystems have been and will continue to be averted. From an economic viewpoint, the global community will be spared huge expenditure on healthcare and environmental protection.

Furthermore, and what is often not realised, because most ozone-depleting substances are also powerful greenhouse gases, implementation of the Montreal Protocol has contributed significantly to mitigating climate change, an issue of particular concern to Small Island Developing States.

There are a number of important factors behind the success of the Montreal Protocol. These include effective mechanisms established early on for financing, capacity building, technology transfer, institutional strengthening, data collection and management. In the Barbados outcome document all these factors are considered to be vital in enabling the sustainable development of SIDS.

Co-chairs,

One major challenge the Parties to the Protocol have been concerned with in recent years has been the phase-out over the next two decades of the bulk of the remaining ozone-depleting substances, that is, hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs). In SIDS, HCFCs are used almost entirely in air conditioning and refrigeration equipment. Such use affects a number of sectors that are of vital importance in the socio-economic life of these countries such as fisheries, food security and safety, tourism and buildings. The desire is to replace HCFCs with alternative substances that are technically and economically feasible, safe, climate friendly and energy efficient. Traditional alternatives such as hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) are indeed non-ozone depleting but have high global warming-potential with adverse consequences for climate. As the phase-out schedule of HCFCs for developing countries kicked in 2013, the prompt replacement of HCFCs with environment-friendly alternatives has become critical. In paragraph 68 of the Barbados outcome document, the SIDS declared their support for a gradual phase down in the consumption and production of HFCs and noted that they were exploring the use of the Montreal Protocol in that regard.

Beyond the environment-friendly phase-out of HCFCs, the SIDS are confronted with a number of other challenges. Prevention of illegal trade in ozone-depleting substances is one of them. In realizing this goal, the ozone regime would greatly benefit from close partnerships and collaboration with Customs regimes and institutions dealing with the management of chemicals and hazardous waste.

Co-Chairs,

In the light of these various challenges, the Ozone Secretariat is pleased to have the opportunity to convey to this meeting decision XXV/9 on the implementation of the Montreal Protocol with regard to Small Island Developing States that was adopted by the 25th Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol in October 2013.

In that decision, the Parties to the Protocol noted that the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, held in Rio de Janeiro in June 2012, recognized in its outcome document, “The future we want”, that the phase-out of ozone-depleting substances was resulting in a rapid increase in the use and release of high global warming-potential HFCs to the environment. They also recognized the importance of phasing-out HCFCs through transitioning to alternatives that minimized environmental impact, in particular impact on climate, as well as meeting other health, safety and economic considerations. Taking further note of the fact that SIDS remained a special case for sustainable development in view of their unique and particular vulnerabilities, the Parties requested the Ozone Secretariat to liaise with the organizers of the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States, to be held in Apia from 1 to 4 September 2014, with a view to promoting discussions on the challenges associated with the implementation of the Montreal Protocol, and to report to the parties on the outcome of that liaison at the thirty-fourth meeting of the Open-ended Working Group to be held in July 2014.

Co-chairs,

In line with the Secretariat’s mandate, we have submitted a Note for the consideration of this meeting. We do hope that in the context of this and follow up meetings in the lead-up to the Conference in Samoa, our input will contribute to promoting discussions on the challenges associated with the implementation of the Montreal Protocol. The Ozone Secretariat will remain, as always, firmly supportive of and fully committed to working with all parties and in particular with the Small Island Developing States in seeking to realize the objectives of the Protocol.

Thank you very much for your attention.

Partnerships
Input to the overarching theme - Genuine and durable partnerships
Reference Para 6 - A/C.2/68/L.67
The overarching theme of the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States in 2014 shall be “The sustainable development of small island developing States through genuine and durable partnerships”, and also decides that the Conference shall serve as a forum to build on existing successful partnerships as well as to launch innovative and concrete new ones, to advance the sustainable development of small island developing States;
Introduction

1. The Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone layer is hailed as the most successful multilateral environmental treaty in the history of the United Nations. Its many successes are underpinned by its universal ratification and implementation of all its objectives by the Parties. The small island developing States (SIDS) are parties to this Protocol and have actively contributed to its success. The SIDS have also been active players in the search for solution to emerging challenges in the implementation this Protocol. It is in this context that at their 25th meeting in October 2013, the Parties to the Montreal Protocol adopted decision XXV/9, annexed to this note, on the implementation of the Montreal Protocol with regard to small island developing States.

2. In adopting decision XXV/9, the Parties recalled that of the 197 parties to the Montreal Protocol, 39 are recognized by the United Nations as SIDS. The Parties also noted the reaffirmation of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development that SIDS remained a special case for sustainable development in view of their unique and particular vulnerabilities, including their small size, remoteness, narrow resource and export base, and exposure to global environmental challenges and external economic shocks. They further noted the importance of phasing out hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) through transitioning to climate friendly alternatives and requested the Ozone Secretariat, inter alia, to liaise with the organizers of the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States with the view to promoting discussions on the challenges in the implementation of the Montreal Protocol.

3. Against this background, this note highlights the successes and challenges in the implementation of the Montreal Protocol and their relevance to the sustainable development of SIDS in the context of the outcome document of the Inter-regional preparatory meeting for the Third International Conference on SIDS held in Barbados in August 2013 (hereafter referred to as the Barbados outcome document) .



Montreal Protocol Successes

4. Implementation of the Montreal Protocol has resulted to date in the reduction of global production and consumption of controlled ozone-depleting substances (ODS) by over 98 per cent. Global phase-out of a number of substances harmful to the atmosphere, such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), halons and carbon tetrachloride, was achieved by 2010. Most SIDS are classified as developing countries under the Protocol and a majority of them were able to phase-out ozone depleting substances well ahead of schedule with the technical and financial assistance provided by the Protocol’s Multilateral Fund (MLF). The remaining ODS, mainly HCFCs, will be phased-out gradually in the next two decades.

5. Recent scientific assessment of the state of the ozone layer, including global observations, continued to show important decreases in atmospheric levels of ODS. With full implementation of the Protocol the ozone layer is expected to return to pre-1980 levels by around the middle of this century, thus preventing large-scale environmental impacts. In terms of human health, the global community will avoid millions of cases of skin cancer and eye cataracts, saving trillions of dollars in healthcare. Large reductions in the growth and productivity of plants and aquatic organisms and possible adverse changes to the ecosystems have also been avoided.

6. Since ozone-depleting substances are also greenhouse gases, implementation of the Montreal Protocol is estimated to have avoided greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to more than 135 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide, thus contributing significantly to climate change mitigation, an issue of particular concern to SIDS.

7. Important factors behind the success of the Protocol include the application of two principles of international environmental law, namely, the precautionary principle and common but differentiated responsibility. Under the former principle, Governments have been taking measures to prevent increased ozone depletion whenever science pointed to threats to the ozone layer even in the absence of hard evidence. Among measures taken was the ban of identified ODS before they were ever commercially produced. The principle of common but differentiated responsibility has been applied in instances such as allowing developing countries a 10-15 year grace period in the ODS phase-out schedules and requiring developed countries to contribute funds to enable provision of financial, institutional and technical support to developing countries for their ODS phase-out. In this regard, the role of the Protocol’s efficient compliance mechanism and the Multilateral Fund which supports developing countries through its implementing agencies including the UNEP-driven Compliance Assistance Programme, have been instrumental.

8. It is evident that the Montreal Protocol encompasses many of the enabling factors that are highlighted in the Barbados outcome document as important for the sustainable development of SIDS (e.g. financial assistance, capacity building, technology transfer, institutional support, data collection and management). These factors have been key to the successful implementation of the Protocol by developing countries, including the SIDS, and have been mentioned as a possible model for tackling other global environmental and sustainable development challenges.


Challenges under the Montreal Protocol particularly in relation to small island developing States

9. Some challenges in the implementation of the Montreal Protocol that are of particular concern to SIDS are highlighted in the following paragraphs:

(a) Phase-out of HCFCs through transitioning to safe and climate friendly/energy efficient alternatives

10. HCFCs, used primarily in air conditioning appliances, refrigeration equipment and foam manufacturing, comprise the bulk of the remaining ODS and are to be gradually phased-out globally in the next two decades. The use of ODS in air conditioning and refrigeration equipment by SIDS is critical in their socio-economic life since it affects a number of sectors including fisheries, food security and safety, tourism and buildings. However, as the 2012 UN conference on Sustainable Development recognized in its outcome document “The future we want”, the phase-out of ozone-depleting HCFCs has been resulting in a rapid increase in the use and release of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) as alternative substitutes. HFCs are ozone-friendly but possess high global-warming potential (GWP) contributing to climate change. A major challenge is, therefore, to avoid replacing HCFCs with high-GWP HFCs but achieve the HCFC phase-out through the adoption of technically and economically feasible alternatives that are safe, climate friendly and energy efficient.

11. Since 2009 Parties to the Montreal Protocol have been considering modalities for amending the Protocol to control the consumption and production of HFCs. Discussions on this issue are on-going.

12. In paragraph 68 of the Barbados outcome document, the SIDS declared their support for a gradual phase down in the consumption and production of HFCs and noted that they were exploring the use of the Montreal Protocol in that regard.

(b) Prevention of illegal trade in ozone-depleting substances

13. As the continuing phase-out of ODS further constrains their supply, the temptation to make money through illegal trade in such substances can be expected to increase and thus necessitating enhanced efforts to address this problem. In this regard, establishment of partnerships and technical cooperation among institutions regulating the ozone layer protection and Customs regimes as well as institutions dealing with the management of chemicals and hazardous waste is of major importance.

(c) Treatment of ozone-depleting substances on board ships

14. Several SIDS have raised important issues associated with the attribution of ODS supplied to national and foreign flagged ships, calling for a standard and effective approach to be followed by all parties. If not properly treated and monitored, such trade in ODS could place many parties, including SIDS, in non-compliance with their Protocol obligations and provide loopholes for illegal trade. This issue is yet to be fully addressed by the Parties to the Montreal Protocol.


(d) Environmentally-sound management of unwanted ODS

15. Although the production and consumption of ODS has been reduced, the management of unwanted ODS held by industrial and commercial users and which are stored in containers and installed in old refrigeration and air-conditioning equipment remains a challenge. To prevent emissions of those ODS, it is critical that unwanted ODS are properly recovered and ultimately destroyed. It has been estimated that the global amount of unwanted ODS is about 5.4 million tonnes of ODS and associated annual emissions are about 2.3 billion tonnes CO2 equivalent per year. However, in managing stocks of unwanted ODS, countries face many challenges, including economic, logistical, and legal barriers. This is especially true in developing countries, where resources are limited. Although management of unwanted ODS is not a requirement under the Protocol, the Parties are concerned and have been addressing this matter over the years. Coordination of actions among the ozone and chemicals-related regimes to prevent emissions from leaking into the atmosphere would be critical.

16. It is hoped that the challenges faced by SIDS in implementing the Montreal Protocol will be duly considered at the Third International conference on SIDS and during its preparatory process.


Annex

Decision XXV/9: Implementation of the Montreal Protocol with regard to small island developing States

Recalling that, of the 197 parties to the Montreal Protocol, 39 are recognized by the United Nations as small island developing States,
Noting that the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from 20 to 22 June 2012, recognized in its outcome document, “The future we want”, that the phase-out of ozone-depleting substances was resulting in a rapid increase in the use and release of high global warming-potential hydrofluorocarbons to the environment,
Recognizing decision XIX/6, in which the parties agreed to accelerate the phase-out of hydrochlorofluorocarbons and encouraged parties to promote the selection of alternatives thereto that minimized environmental impact, in particular impact on climate, as well as meeting other health, safety and economic considerations,
Noting that the outcome document of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development reaffirmed that small island developing States remained a special case for sustainable development in view of their unique and particular vulnerabilities, including their small size, remoteness, narrow resource and export base, and exposure to global environmental challenges and external economic shocks,
To request the Ozone Secretariat to liaise with the organizers of the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States, to be held in Apia from 1 to 4 September 2014, with a view to promoting discussions on the challenges associated with the implementation of the Montreal Protocol, and to report to the parties on the outcome of that liaison at the thirty-fourth meeting of the Open-ended Working Group.

Partnerships

The below is a listing of Partnerships where this UN entity/IGO is listed as a partner.

OzonAction
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