Pakistan to eliminate Ozone Depleting Substances: Zahid
ISLAMABAD—Federal Minister for Climate Change Zahid Hamid Tuesday said Pakistan was committed to fulfill its obligation under the Montreal Protocol to eliminate Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS). However, he said “The developing countries should not be financially burdened under any proposed amendment in upcoming meetings on Montreal Protocol in Vienna.”
The minister was talking to Ambassador of European Union Jean Francois Cautain, who called on him, to discuss the mid July Montreal Protocol meetings scheduled to be held in Vienna, the capital of Austria. The Protocol on the Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (MP) was signed in 1987 under the auspices of United Nations, said a press release.
The Protocol, which Pakistan signed in 1992, has ultimate objective of elimination of Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS). Since 1992, Pakistan has successfully implemented various ODS phase out programs. The most prominent of these programs were chlorofluorocarbons (CFC), carbon tetrachloride (CTC), Halons, methyl bromide and phasing out of CFCs from Metered Dose Inhalers (MDIs).
The Montreal Protocol has a rolling fund (The Multilateral Fund) that pays for the agreed incremental costs for shift- ing over CFC’s and now H-CFCs to alternative. In October 2015 in Dubai, the parties reached a consensus that there will be an HFC amendment this year.
“The lack of economical alternative options to developing countries, the phasing out of ODS should be gradual and supported by financial assistance,” the minister suggested. “Pakistan has achieved 100% phase out target of these ODS in 2010”, Zahid informed the EU envoy.
From 2011, he said, the Ministry of Climate Change was phasing out Hydro chlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), adding that there was no indigenous production of HCFCs and Pakistan was importing ODS to meet the industrial requirements. “It is great pride for Pakistan that at the 76th meeting of the Executive Committee of the Multilateral Fund held 9-13 May, 2016 in Montreal, the second stage of the HCFC Phase-out Management Plan for Pakistan was approved with a total funding of US$ 5.68 million.
The plan is very ambitious and forward-looking and will enable Pakistan to reduce its consumption of HCFCs by 50% in 2020,” he added. The ambassador assured to extend its support and help to Pakistan in upcoming meetings on Montreal Protocol scheduled to be held in mid July.—APP