-Kigali Amendment to Montreal Protocol highlighted
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ) on Wednesday, August 29, conducted a day-long training workshop aimed at creating massive awareness around the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol.
The training brought together scores of participants from various agencies and institutions.
The Montreal Protocol, which was amended on October 15, 2016, in Kigali, Rwanda, is another global commitment to stop climate change.
EPA Chief Technical Advisor, Levi Z. Piah said that technicians have already started discussing the implementation of the protocol with mix views, while some are suggesting that Hybrid Fiber Coaxial (HFC) be banned. Others want high tariff placed on the importation into the country of substances that deplete the ozone layer.
HFC network is a telecommunication technology in which optical fiber cable and coaxial cable are used in different portions of a network, to carry broadband contents such as video, data, and voice.
Mr. Piah said some of the suggestions the technicians have made would come up during the training, and asked the gathering comprising representatives of line government entities, vocational schools, and professional associations to consider the safety of the population and the environment.
He lauded GIZ for providing funding for the training which, according to him, is important to the health and safety of Liberians and also good for the environment.
The training was also intended to seek measures of mitigating harsh environmental impacts, such as sea erosion, flooding, and deforestation that the country is currently experiencing.
With more than half of West Africa’s remaining rainforest that covers about 45 percent of the country, some 4.3 million hectares, Liberia is a central figure in the fight against climate in the region, the African continent and globally as the forest plays a major role in absorbing a huge amount of greenhouse gas. In spite of this great advantage, the country continues to experience the worst impact of the menace.
He also said that the importation into the country of cheap electronic products like mobile phones, which chemical composition remains unknown, is unhealthy; noting that what is cheap may also be expensive.
The Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer was designed to reduce the production and consumption of ozone depleting substances in order to reduce their abundance in the atmosphere. The protocol was agreed on September 16 in 1987, and entered into force on January 1, 1989.
The subsequent amendment in Kigali stipulates that developed countries will begin reducing HFCs as early as 2019, while developing countries will start later.
Katharina Arndt of GIZ said that in the context of regulating ozone depleting substances, we believe it is of great significance to highlight the importance of the refrigeration and air conditioning sector, when it comes to not only ozone layer protection but also mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions and the use of energy efficient cooling technology.
She assured that the HCFH Phase-out management plan for Liberia that is being implemented by GIZ under the Montreal Protocol, supports the country to meet its requirement to phase out ozone damaging fluoridated gases in the cooling sector.
Madam Arndt said the forum is intended to enable and support the cooling sector, its industry and training institutions, opening up space for questions, doubts and discussions on the way forward as the Kigali Amendment and the planned HFC phase-down have further implications for the cooling sector