Regional Ozone Network for Europe and Central Asia
The Regional Ozone Network for Europe & Central Asia (ECA network) includes 11 developing countries which spread from Central Asia and Caucasus to the Balkans: Albania, Armenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Republic of Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, Turkey, and Turkmenistan.
The operational languages of the network are English and Russian. Several former network countries have already acceded to the European Union, Croatia being the most recent example. Further candidate countries may join in the future. Armenia and Kyrgyzstan joined the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) between Belarus, Kazakhstan and the Russian Federation in 2015. Neighboring countries include major trade partners such as China and the European Union, countries with economies in transition (CEIT countries) as well as Afghanistan, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Iraq, and the Syrian Arab Republic to the south.
The priorities of the network will continue to evolve according to the needs of network countries – those for 2014 will include:
- Monitoring of Montreal Protocol implementation in terms of compliance, consumption trends, data reporting, operation of import/export licensing and quota system, etc
- Cooperation with the private sector including representatives of industry and national RAC associations and with international stakeholders
- Implementation of integrated policy measures to promote ozone- and climate-friendly technologies and the adoption of performance and safety standards applicable to the refrigeration & air-conditioning (RAC) sector.
- Establishment of training and certification schemes for refrigeration technicians and companies. This involves the promotion of e-learning courses as a complement to traditional face-to-face and practical training.
- Enforcement support related to the iPIC initiative, analysis of differences in reported trade data and the ECA Ozone Protection Award for Customs and Enforcement Officers (4th edition)
Due to the 30% reduced budget for ECA network activities, the following will be the main activities in 2016:
- Customs cooperation meeting & ceremony of the ECA ozone protection award for customs & enforcement officer in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, 24-25 May 2016
- ECA network meeting in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, 26-27 May 2016
- Thematic meeting on HCFC phase-out / ODS alternatives for English-speaking NOUs / RAC associations in Belgrade, Serbia, 29 November - 1 December 2016 (back-to-back to the annual KGH congress in Belgrade to allow participation in the technology roundtable)
- Thematic meeting on HCFC phase-out / ODS alternatives for Russian-speaking NOUs / RAC associations in Chisinau, Moldova, 11-13 (or 18-20) October 2016
- Translation of technical & policy related publications, meeting documents and presentations (English, Russian), led by Armenia, 2016
Countries are encouraged to finance country-to-country (C2C) assistance using their HPMP or institutional strengthening funding. Of course UNEP would be happy to recommend resource persons, to review the agenda and to possibly participate in such events.
The ECA network has evolved into a multi-stakeholder network involving a wide range and increasing number of national and international stakeholders. All of them have contributed to the ECA region’s compliance with Montreal Protocol targets. The credit and praise of this is widely shared. We congratulate and thank the high-level Government officials and their national ozone teams, customs and other enforcement officers, refrigeration and air-conditioning experts, building planners and architects, private companies, academia, vocational schools, non-governmental organizations, public schools, media and the general public for the tremendous efforts and contributions.
Our special thanks are extended to all the resource persons from the Ozone Secretariat, the Multilateral Fund Secretariat, the implementing agencies and bilateral partners, our technical and policy experts from inside and outside the Montreal Protocol community as well as cooperating organizations such as IIR, AREA, ASHRAE, REHVA, WCO and EIA and many others. All of them contributed their knowledge and shared their experiences often at their own costs and using their private time. We are also very grateful to UNDP and UNIDO who facilitated the participation of the CEIT countries in relevant activities.
Please visit the ECA website for further information: www.unep.org/ozonaction/ecanetwork/
Mr. Halvart Koeppen
Regional Network Coordinator (ECA network)
UNEP OzonActon in Paris