8-9 August 2012, Baku, Azerbaijan - A national Awareness-Raising Workshop to launch a project for the design of a national Pollutant Release and Transfer Register (PRTR) was held in Azerbaijan from 8 to 9 August 2012.

The two-day workshop was attended by some 30 environmental specialistsview_of_the_classroom representing government, industry, and non-governmental organizations, as well as UNITAR resource persons. UNITAR provided substantive training on PRTRs as well as examples of national and regional PRTRs. Moreover, the US Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) programme was presented virtually by a representative of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Important discussions were held on the need for a PRTR system in Azerbaijan, possible objectives, potential benefits and challenges, and relevant existing infrastructure. The country will expand on these discussions and carry out an infrastructure assessment over the next few months. Based on this, the key features of the national PRTR system will be designed.

The National PRTR Awareness-Raising Workshop was hosted by the Ministry of Ecology and National Resources of Azerbaijan and Ecoscope NGO, with technical support provided by UNITAR, and financial support provided by SAICM's Quick Start Programme Trust Fund.