The Montreal Protocol on Substances
that Deplete the Ozone Layer was set into force on 1 January 1989. The Department
of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) acts as the national coordinator
for its implementation in the Philippines. The First Philippine Country
Program for the Phaseout of Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) was prepared
in May 1993. This Program specified the Philippine ODS phase-out schedules
and laid out the plans, programs, and activities that the country would
undertake in phasing out ODS. As a developing country, the Philippines was
provided with financial assistance from the Multilateral Fund for ODS phase-out
Through the DENR Environmental Management Bureau (EMB), the Philippine Ozone
Desk (POD) was created to facilitate and coordinate ODS phase-out projects
and policies. The roles of POD are the following:
- To ensure compliance of timetable set to phase out ODS in the country
- To strengthen procedures for restricting ODS imports
- To coordinate with relevant government agencies
- To supervise/monitor phase-out projects
- To evaluate effectiveness of phase-out activities
- To collect national data on ODS consumption
Completed investment projects funded by the Multilateral
Fund of the Montreal Protocol have phased out about 1,300 MT of ODS in various
industry sectors. Regulations were also issued to control ODS importation.
An Active information, education and communication program was implemented
to make both the industry sector and general public aware of the ozone depletion
problem and the need to suport ODS phaseout.
For these efforts, the Philippines was awarded the "Outstanding National
Ozone Unit Award for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol" by
the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in 1997. During the same year,
the country received another award for "Leadership in the Phaseout of
ODS in the Solvent Sector" from USEPA.
Presently, there are three on-going projects under
the POD: the Institutional Strengthening Project (ISP), the Methyl Bromide
Phase-out Strategy Formulation, and the National CFC Phase-out Plan.
Background: Ozone Science and the Montreal Protocol
The 1985 Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer was the first framework for co-operative activities to protect the ozone layer. Here, parties agreed to co-operate with each other in scientific research to improve the understanding of the atmospheric processes, to share information on ODS production and emissions and to implement preventive measures to control ODS emissions. The Vienna Convention, adopted in March 1985 and signed by 21 states, does not contain legally binding controls or targets.
Upon the discovery of the seasonal “ozone hole” in Antarctica in the 1985, governments recognized the need for stronger measures to respond to the problem of ozone depletion. Thus, the Montreal Protocol on Substances the Deplete the Ozone Layer was signed on September 16, 1987 and entered into force on January 1, 1989. In this international agreement, signed by 188 developed and developing countries to date, committed to phase-out or gradually stop their production and consumption of ozone depleting substances like chlorofluorocarbons or CFCs (CFC-11, 12, 113, 114, and 115) and Halons (1211, 1301, 2402).
The Montreal Protocol is dynamic, so has had several amendments and adjustments. The Protocol was adjusted to accelerate the phase-out schedules in London in 1990, Copenhagen in 1992, Vienna in 1995, Montreal in 1997 and Beijing in 1999. It has been amended to introduce other kinds of control measures and to add new controlled substances to the list:
* 1990 London Amendment included additional CFCs (CFC-13, 111, 112, 211, 212, 213, 214, 215, 216, 217) and two solvents (carbon tetrachloride and methyl chloroform)
* 1992 Copenhagen Amendment added methyl bromide, HBFCs and HCFCs
* 1997 Montreal Amendment finalized the schedules for phasing out methyl bromide
* 1999 Beijing Amendment included bromochloromethane in the list of ODS for phaseout and introduced production controls on HCFCs and controls on trade with non-Parties
Developing countries have a grace period of ten (10) years before they must start their phase-out schedules. The phase-out schedules cover both the production and consumption of the target substances.
Who we are and what we do
The Philippines signed the Montreal Protocol on September 14, 1988 and ratified it on March 21, 1993. The Philippines’ commitment to the Montreal Protocol is to phase out its consumption of all ODS. The Montreal Protocol defines consumption as production plus import minus export. Since the Philippines is neither a producer nor an exporter of ODS, its consumption is equal to its importation. As part of its monitoring and regulatory function, it has been charged with the issuance of clearances for all ODS importations.
The Philippine Ozone Desk
The Philippine Ozone Desk (POD) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) – Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) is the national coordinator of programs for the implementation of the Montreal Protocol. It is also known as the country’s National Ozone Unit (NOU).
The mission of POD is to ensure the country’s compliance to the Montreal Protocol and promote the protection of the ozone layer among Filipinos. POD is a government project under the DENR-EMB funded by the Multilateral Fund. There are currently three projects under the POD which are all implemented by the World Bank: the Institutional Strengthening Project (ISP), the National Chlorofluorocarbon Phase-out Project (NCPP), and the National Methyl Bromide Phase-out Strategy (NMBPS). The NMBPS is co-supervised by the Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority (FPA) of the Department of Agriculture.