Policy Recommendations

Excerpts from the Final Statement of the OECD International Conference on PRTR's (Tokyo, September 1998)

"The OECD International Conference on PRTRs, through a dialogue involving participants from governments, industry and public interest groups of OECD and other UN Member States,

  • re-emphasises the recommendations of Agenda 21 and the OECD Council Recommendation on Implementing PRTRs and encourages countries to establish PRTR systems and community right-to-know programs;
  • encourages all countries without PRTR systems to consider the initiation of national PRTR design processes and to ensure that all affected and interested parties participate in these processes and have the knowledge and capacity to ensure effective participation;
  • calls upon UNITAR and UNEP and other relevant international organisations as well as countries with existing PRTR systems to increase assistance to developing countries and countries with economies-in-transition to strengthen national capacities and capabilities to design and implement national PRTR systems."

The following recommendations on PRTRs were issued in 1997 by the Second Session of the IFCS (Forum II)

"The Forum encourages the development of PRTRs as mechanisms for achieving sustainable development and reducing risks. Much progress has been achieved since the 1992 Earth Summit in Brazil, with the number of countries creating these systems growing each year. The IFCS will continue to monitor and encourage progress in this area.

The Forum invites the continued efforts of IOMC Participating Organizations to facilitate and encourage adoption of PRTRs at national and local levels throughout the world. In particular, the Forum supports the work of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) and OECD in this area, and takes note of the need for assistance to developing countries and countries in transition in establishing PRTRs. The Forum supports public and labour NGO involvement in PRTR development and also recognizes the concerns of the chemical industry related to the need to tailor PRTRs to local circumstances. PRTRs should consider various relevant forms of emissions, including industrial releases and diffuse sources. The Forum also recognizes that PRTRs can be an important tool in measuring progress of Responsible Care programs.

More specifically, to carry this important work forward, Forum II recommends that UNITAR and OECD, in collaboration with the existing PRTR Co-ordination Group, assist lead agencies, identified by governments, in establishing PRTRs programs. Capacity building workshops, seminars and projects which may be organized should include elements of Community Right-To-Know and PRTRs, where appropriate."