1st meeting of Working Group on Pollutant Release and Transfer Registers (PRTRs)
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), New-York, USA
June 26 – July 1, 2017
1st meeting of Working Group on Pollutant Release and Transfer Registers (PRTRs) was held on the base of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Experts of the CIS Center as well as experts from Canada, Chile, Japan, Spain, Sweden, the United States, Thailand and Colombia were included as participants.
During the meeting there were raised a number of issues related to creation of practical tools and recommendations for implementation of PRTRs in the concerned countries. The main focus of discussion was aimed at the development of common requirements and harmonization of approaches to the introduction of PRTRs, which includes the unification of the format for collection and transfer of the information, its processing and analysis, the development of unified technical aspects of information and data exchange.
Also the methods of emissions estimation were discussed at the meeting, taking into account the transfers of chemicals outside the country borders and the emissions of chemicals from products and also the role of PRTR data in Sustainable Development Goals.
Much attention has been paid to the revision OECD Council Act – Recommendation of the Council on Implementing PRTRs. The main changes in the document is the list of OECD guidelines recommended for application in the process of PRTRs implementation, frequency of reports, data protection policy and work with similar issue projects.
On the special session for PRTR data usage to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, held during the meeting of the Working Group, there were discussed the possibility of applying the recently published approach /document about the role of PRTRs in the analysis of the Sustainable Development Goals prepared by the US. Besides, there were introduced current examples of PRTR data usage related to the SDGs, including the assessment of environmental policies and programs, research on the interaction between the toxic chemical emissions and human health, consideration of corporative environmental activities, creation of public extensions, development of environmental indicators and identification of pollution prevention practices.
The meeting participants considered the possibility of PRTR data applying as an indicator of effectiveness of the Best Available Techniques (BAT) implementation. The OECD Secretariat presented updates on the BAT project on the prevention and control of industrial chemicals pollutions.
One of the topics for discussion was the anticipated role of Center for PRTR Datafor the list of substances (according to the Kiev Protocol) and dissemination of data. The OECD Secretariat and Japan submitted the current status of possible role of Center for PRTR Data: updating and harmonizing the substances list, combining and visualizing data from all countries on one resource, information exchange on PRTR implementation all over the world and dissemination of information about Center for PRTR Data. The meeting participants submitted the information reports on activities related to PRTR for support of their databases. Several countries reported on the existing pollutants data collection such as Canada, Chile, Czech Republic, Japan, Spain, Sweden, USA, European Commission,the Russian Federation, Commission for Environmental Cooperation, Thailand,UNITAR, Colombia
Received information and experience of these countries involved in the implementation of PRTRs could be used for the development of recommendations in the field of environmental and industrial policy for improving access to, and the accuracy of, data about the state of the environment.