Ozone Layer Protection: Awareness and Regulation Consultation

Group Photo of the Tonga National Ozone Unit (Host) with the participants from the Tonga Refrigeration & Engineering Association (TREA)

On the 24th of August, 2022 The National Ozone Unit (NOU) from the Department of Climate Change hosted a stakeholder meeting with the Tonga Refrigeration and Engineering Association as per Institutional Strengthening Agreement between the Ministry responsible for climate change and UNEP. Predominantly, to maintain engagement of stakeholders and build their capacity on ozone layer protection as well as gaining their feedbacks on the Ozone Layer Protection Regulation.

Mr. Áloisio Fifita during his presentation

After the usual opening of the program, Mr. Áloisio Fifita from the Department of Climate Change spoke thoroughly on ozone layer awareness issues focusing on the anthropogenic causes of ozone depletion and what to do in order to minimize the problem. He said that these are common issues addressed at almost every ozone layer awareness sessions. “However, due to the severity of the problem and its extreme impact on the globe, they cannot be ignored.” Mr. Fifita finished his presentation by acknowledging the hard works from the technicians and also reminding them the importance of applying safe practices at work for their safety and the protection of the Ozone Layer.

Ms. Papyrus Tokai during the Ozone Regulation consultation session

Ms. Papyrus Tokai, the Ministry’s legal advisor concluded the meeting with consultation on the Ozone Layer Regulation. “The Ozone Layer Protection Regulation will serve as a legal medium, for the implementation of the Ozone Layer Protection Act 2022, as well as fulfilling the guiding principles of the Montreal Protocol,” said Ms. Tokai.  The discussions were focused on the application forms and applied fees. Most of the technicians wanted to make sure that all applied fees (import permit, quota allocation and reserved quota) should be fair and reasonable. Ms. Tokai emphasized that all the given feedbacks will be reported to the National Ozone Advisory Committee prior to the finalizing of the Regulation.

The meeting was funded by UNEP and it will continue in the future for the sake of sustaining stakeholder engagement and keeping Tonga’s compliance with the Montreal Protocol.