Right to Know - Helping to promote Clean Production


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Por Martin Hojsik
Toxics Water Campaign Coordinator
Greenpeace International

Published in: Technology, Health & Medicine
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  • Rights to be enjoyed irrespective of citizenship or domicile
  • Right to Know - Helping to promote Clean Production

    1. 1. Right to Know - Helping to promote Clean Production <ul><li>Martin Hojsik </li></ul><ul><li>Toxics Water Campaign Coordinator </li></ul><ul><li>Greenpeace International </li></ul>
    2. 2. Rio Declaration <ul><li>Principle 10 </li></ul><ul><li>Environmental issues are best handled with participation of all concerned citizens, at the relevant level. At the national level, each individual shall have appropriate access to information concerning the environment that is held by public authorities, including information on hazardous materials and activities </li></ul><ul><li>in their communities, and the opportunity to participate in decision-making processes. States shall facilitate and encourage public awareness and participation by making information widely available. Effective access to judicial and administrative proceedings, including redress and remedy, shall be provided. </li></ul>
    3. 3. Aarhus Convention <ul><li>Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters </li></ul><ul><li>Established under the auspices of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe </li></ul><ul><li>43 Parties plus European Union </li></ul><ul><li>Open to accession by any member of the UN </li></ul>
    4. 4. Aarhus Convention – Environmental Democracy <ul><li>Objective – To contribute to the protection of the right to live in an environment adequate to health and well-being creates procedural rights </li></ul><ul><li>Three pillars – (1) right to information, (2) participation and (3)access to justice in environmental matters </li></ul>
    5. 5. 3 Pillars of Environmental Democracy <ul><li>Access to Information </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Right to access environmental information held by public authorities </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Public Participation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Right to participate in decisions on activities which may have a significant effect on the environment </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Access to Justice </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Access to justice in cases of activities which may have a significant effect on the environment and decisions of authorities related to such cases or access to information cases </li></ul></ul>
    6. 6. Access to Information <ul><li>Right to Access – right to access environmental information held by public authorities; and active obligation to collect and disseminate environmental information </li></ul><ul><li>Type of Information – pollution data, environmental health information, permits granted or policies </li></ul><ul><li>Time limit – one month for delivering of the information </li></ul>
    7. 7. From access to dissemination <ul><li>Right to Access information requires authorities to respond to public information requests </li></ul><ul><li>Pollutant Release and Transfer Register provides public with directly accessible data without need contact authorities </li></ul><ul><li>Providing in easier access to data </li></ul><ul><li>Improving transparency </li></ul>
    8. 8. Pollutant Release and Transfer Register <ul><li>A catalogue or register of potentially harmful pollutant releases or transfers to the environment </li></ul><ul><li>Information on releases to air, water and soil as well as transfers of pollutants/waste to treatment and disposal sites – but not as ingredients in products </li></ul><ul><li>Information should be available via direct electronic access, such as an open website </li></ul>
    9. 9. OECD minimum characteristics of PRTR <ul><li>Reporting on individual chemicals </li></ul><ul><li>by individual industrial facilities </li></ul><ul><li>on all releases and transfers </li></ul><ul><li>to all environmental media (air, water, land) </li></ul><ul><li>periodically </li></ul><ul><li>with consistently structured data </li></ul><ul><li>entered into a computer database, and </li></ul><ul><li>actively disseminated to the public </li></ul><ul><li>with limited data withheld as trade secrets, </li></ul><ul><li>with the aim to improve environmental quality and promote pollution prevention. </li></ul>
    10. 10. PRTR - Helping to reduce pollution <ul><li>Increasing transparency and accountability </li></ul><ul><ul><li>By requiring that data be made public, PRTRs and TRIs make businesses better accountable for the pollution they cause. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Providing data for state programs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>E.g. US States use the TRI data to support their pollution prevention programs and toxic use reduction plans, with clear goals and timelines. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Evaluating progress </li></ul><ul><ul><li>E.g. the US federal government uses the data to track trends, to assess the effectiveness of their regulations. </li></ul></ul>
    11. 11. PRTR - Helping to reduce pollution <ul><li>Informing investors </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Investment analysts use TRI data to provide recommendations to clients seeking to make environmentally sound investments. Insurance companies look to TRI data as one indication of potential environmental liabilities. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Helping public control </li></ul><ul><ul><li>NGOs use the data to raise the capacity of people to understand the types of hazardous chemicals being discharged into their communities. </li></ul></ul>
    12. 12. PRTRs Around the World <ul><li>US – Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) </li></ul><ul><li>Canada – National Pollutant Release Inventory </li></ul><ul><li>Europe – European Pollutant Emission Register </li></ul><ul><li>Australia – National Pollutant Inventory </li></ul><ul><li>Mexico – Registro de Emisiones y Transferencia de Contaminantes </li></ul><ul><li>Chile - Registro de Emisiones y Transferencia de Contaminantes </li></ul>
    13. 14. Time to start in Argentina <ul><li>Riachuelo basin is the most relevant place to start </li></ul><ul><li>PRTR could help to </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide tool for monitoring development of discharges into the basin </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Support transparency and public oversight of the clean up </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create competition between the industry actors to improve performance </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Riachuelo needs PRTR </li></ul>
    14. 15. Gracias Contact Martin Hojsik tel: +66 89 927 3236 tel: +421 905 313 395 [email_address]