EPA celebrates International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer

The Environment Public Authority (EPA) celebrated the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer on Monday, affirming the need for serious measures to face climate change.

In her speech at the ceremony, EPA Director General Samira Al-Kandari said Kuwait is eager to execute all efforts to protect the ozone layer, through its commitments to international agreements on the matter.

Kuwait had executed several national projects and programs on protecting the layer, and it also joined the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer and the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the ozone in 1992, she said.

EPA’s Supreme Council has limited the import of substances that affects the ozone layer and is supervising trade in such substances in Kuwait, she added.

Meanwhile, the official noted that the GCC states agreed on improving the Gulf’s unified system on ozone depleting substances, during their meeting in Oman a few days ago. They agreed on ratifying the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, presented by Bahrain and Kuwait during the meeting, she said.

The Kuwaiti delegation played an effective role in connecting views on the suggested amendments on the protocol, to reach the final statement of the Kigali agreement in 2016. Kuwait was then the general coordinator of the Asian group since 2008, Al-Kandari said.

Al-Kandari noted that the main challenge facing the GCC countries in committing to the Montreal protocol in dealing with the growth of Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) substances reserves, used for cooling and refrigeration.

These substances affect global warming, and there is a lack in alternatives for countries with hot weather, she explained.

EPA will organize a trainig course in Q1 2024 for workers in refrigeration companies to apply the Kigali amendments to reduce the use of such substances, said the official.

On his part, head of the ozone department Yaqoub Al-Matouq said that Kuwait is set to execute the articles of the suggested Kigali amendments, which will be presented to the GCC leaders for approval. The amendment will be funded by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP).

The Kigali amendment is set to be executed in 2024, except for the GCC countries, as they’ve been given a period of eight years for execution, due to the nature of their hot climate, he noted.

Meanwhile, Executive Secretary of the Ozone Secretariat of UNEP Tina Birmpili hailed Kuwait’s role and efforts to protect the ozone layer, in a video call during the event.

UNEP will continue cooperating with Kuwait to enhance efforts in protecting the ozone layer, she added.

Source: Kuwait News Agency