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Sri Lanka: Decision to Ratify Amendment to Montreal Protocol

(Oct. 25, 2017) It was reported on October 11, 2017, that the Government of Sri Lanka intends to ratify the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer.  (Sri Lanka to Ratify Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Hydrofluorocarbons (HGC) Phase-down, COLOMBO PAGE (Oct. 11, 2017).)  The Montreal Protocol was signed in 1987 with the purpose of regulating the use of chemical substances that damage the ozone layer, with a gradual phasing out of their use.  (Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (1987, as amended through 1999), United Nations Environment Programme website (2000).)  Sri Lanka acceded to the Protocol on December 15, 1989, and to previous amendments in 1993, 1997, 1999, and 2002.  (Table 1 – Register of the Status of Ratification of the Montreal Protocol and Its Amendments (as at 1 February 2017), Australian Government Department of the Environment and Energy website.)

The Kigali Amendment was adopted at the 28th meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol on October 15, 2016, in Kigali, Rwanda, and as of October 24, 2017, nine countries have ratified it.  (2.f Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (Status as at Oct. 24, 2017), UNITED NATIONS TREATY COLLECTION; Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (Kigali, Oct. 15, 2016), UNITED NATIONS TREATY COLLECTION (multi-lingual text, scroll down to locate English version).)  The Amendment was agreed to in principle by 170 countries and establishes a pact to gradually end potent greenhouse gas creation by 2045 and prevent a global temperature increase of 0.5 degrees centigrade by 2050.  Those nations that ratify the Amendment promise to reduce production and consumption of hydrofluorocarbons by over 80% in 30 years.  (Sri Lanka to Ratify Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Hydrofluorocarbons (HGC) Phase-down, supra.)   The specific substances involved in the graduated phase-out are listed in Appendix F attached to the Amendment.  (Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (Kigali, Oct. 15, 2016), supra.)

In order to put initiatives in place to meet its obligations under the Montreal Protocol, Sri Lanka has established a National Ozone Unit.  The Unit’s mission, in addition to fulfilling its commitments under the Protocol as amended, is to integrate ozone layer protection into the national planning process, “with minimum inconvenience to industry and the general public,” and to “instigate activities to maintain and strengthen the institutional framework in protection of the Ozone Layer in Sri Lanka.”  (Our Mission, National Ozone Unit website (last updated June 30, 2017).)