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Inicio / Treaties / Protocol on Control of Nitrogen Oxides Emissions (Sophia) (1988)

Protocol on Control of Nitrogen Oxides Emissions (Sophia) (1988)

The Parties,

Determined to implement the Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution,

Concerned that present emissions of air pollutants are causing damage, in exposed parts of Europe and North America, to natural resources of vital environmental and economic importance,

Recalling that the Executive Body for the Convention recognized at its second session the need to reduce effectively the total annual emissions of nitrogen oxides from stationary and mobile sources or their transboundary fluxes by 1995, and the need on the part of other States that had already made progress in reducing these emissions to maintain and review their emission standards for nitrogen oxides,

Taking into consideration existing scientific and technical data on emissions, atmospheric movements and effects on the environment of nitrogen oxides and their secondary products, as well as on control technologies,

Conscious that the adverse environmental effects of emissions of nitrogen oxides vary among countries,

Determined to take effective action to control and reduce national annual emissions of nitrogen oxides or their transboundary fluxes by, in particular, the application of appropriate national emission standards to new mobile and major new stationary sources and the retrofitting of existing major stationary sources,

Recognizing that scientific and technical knowledge of these matters is developing and that it will be necessary to take such developments into account when reviewing the operation of this Protocol and deciding on further action,

Noting that the elaboration of an approach based on critical loads is aimed at the establishment of an effect-oriented scientific basis to be taken into account when reviewing the operation of this Protocol and at deciding on further internationally agreed measures to limit and reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides or their transboundary fluxes,

Recognizing that the expeditious consideration of procedures to create more favourable conditions for exchange of technology will contribute to the effective reduction of emissions of nitrogen oxides in the region of the Commission,

Noting with appreciation the mutual commitment undertaken by several countries to implement immediate and substantial reductions of national annual emissions of nitrogen oxides,

Acknowledging the measures already taken by some countries which have had the effect of reducing emissions of nitrogen oxides,

Have agreed as follows:

Article 1 Definitions

For the purposes of the present Protocol,

1.         “Convention” means the Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution, adopted in Geneva on 13 November 1979;

2.         “EMEP” means the Cooperative Programme for Monitoring and Evaluation of the Long-range Transmission of Air Pollutants in Europe;

3.         “Executive Body” means the Executive Body for the Convention constituted under article 10, paragraph 1, of the Convention;

4.         “Geographical scope of EMEP” means the area defined in article 1, paragraph 4, of the Protocol to the 1979 Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution on Long- term Financing of the Cooperative Programme for Monitoring and Evaluation of the Long- range Transmission of Air Pollutants in Europe (EMEP), adopted in Geneva on 28 September 1984;

5.         “Parties” means, unless the context otherwise requires, the Parties to the present Protocol;

6.         “Commission” means the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe;

7.         “Critical load” means a quantitative estimate of the exposure to one or more pollutants below which significant harmful effects on specified sensitive elements of the environment do not occur according to present knowledge;

8.         “Major existing stationary source” means any existing stationary source the thermal input of which is at least 100 MW;

9.         “Major new stationary source” means any new stationary source the thermal input of which is at least 50 MW;

10.       “Major source category” means any category of sources which emit or may emit air pollutants in the form of nitrogen oxides, including the categories described in the Technical Annex, and which contribute at least 10 per cent of the total national emissions of nitrogen oxides on an annual basis as measured or calculated in the first calendar year after the date of entry into force of the present Protocol, and every fourth year thereafter;

11.       “New stationary source” means any stationary source the construction or substantial modification of which is commenced after the expiration of two years from the date of entry into force of this Protocol;

12.       “New mobile source” means a motor vehicle or other mobile source which is manufactured after the expiration of two years from the date of entry into force of the present Protocol.

Article 2

Basic obligations

1.         The Parties shall, as soon as possible and as a first step, take effective measures to control and/or reduce their national annual emissions of nitrogen oxides or their transboundary fluxes so that these, at the latest by 31 December 1994, do not exceed their national annual emissions of nitrogen oxides or transboundary fluxes of such emissions for the calendar year 1987 or any previous year to be specified upon signature of, or accession to, the Protocol, provided that in addition, with respect to any Party specifying such a previous year, its national average annual transboundary fluxes or national average annual emissions of nitrogen oxides for the period from 1 January 1987 to 1 January 1996 do not exceed its transboundary fluxes or national emissions for the calendar year 1987.

2.         Furthermore, the Parties shall in particular, and no later than two years after the date of entry into force of the present Protocol:

(a)        Apply national emissions standards to major new stationary sources and/or source categories, and to substantially modified stationary sources in major source categories, based on the best available technologies which are economically feasible, taking into consideration the Technical Annex;

(b)        Apply national emission standards to new mobile sources in all major source categories based on the best available technologies which are economically feasible, taking into consideration the Technical Annex and the relevant decisions taken within the framework of the Inland Transport Committee of the Commission; and

(c)        Introduce pollution control measures for major existing stationary sources, taking into consideration the Technical Annex and the characteristics of the plant, its age and its rate of utilization and the need to avoid undue operational disruption.

3.         (a)The Parties shall, as a second step, commence negotiations, no later than six months after the da
te of entry into force of the present Protocol, on further steps to reduce national annual emissions of nitrogen oxides or transboundary fluxes of such emissions, taking into account the best available scientific and technological developments, internationally accepted critical loads and other elements resulting from the work programme undertaken under article 6;

(b) To this end, the Parties shall cooperate in order to establish:

(i)                          Critical loads;

(ii)                          Reductions in national annual emissions of nitrogen oxides or transboundary fluxes of such emissions as required to achieve agreed objectives based on critical loads; and

(iii)                          Measures and a timetable commencing no later than 1 January 1996 for achieving such reductions.

4.         Parties may take more stringent measures than those required by the present article.

Article 3

Exchange of technology

1.         The Parties shall, consistent with their national laws, regulations and practices, facilitate the exchange of technology to reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides, particularly through the promotion of:

(a)              Commercial exchange of available technology;

(b)              Direct industrial contacts and cooperation, including joint ventures;

(c)              Exchange of information and experience; and

(d)              Provision of technical assistance.

2.         In promoting the activities specified in subparagraphs (a) to (d) above, the Parties shall create favourable conditions by facilitating contacts and cooperation among appropriate organizations and individuals in the private and public sectors that are capable of providing technology, design and engineering services, equipment or finance.

3.         The Parties shall, no later than six months after the date of entry into force of the present Protocol, commence consideration of procedures to create more favourable conditions for the exchange of technology to reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides.

Article 4

Unleaded fuel

The Parties shall, as soon as possible and no later than two years after the date of entry into force of the present Protocol, make unleaded fuel sufficiently available, in particular cases as a minimum along main international transit routes, to facilitate the circulation of vehicles equipped with catalytic converters.

Article 5

Review process

1.         The Parties shall regularly review the present Protocol, taking into account the best available scientific substantiation and technological development.

2.         The first review shall take place no later than one year after the date of entry into force of the present Protocol.

Article 6

Work to be undertaken

The Parties shall give high priority to research and monitoring related to the development and application of an approach based on critical loads to determine, on a scientific basis, necessary reductions in emissions of nitrogen oxides. The Parties shall, in particular, through national research programmes, in the work plan of the Executive Body and through other cooperative programmes within the framework of the Convention, seek to:

(a)        identify and quantify effects of emissions of nitrogen oxides on humans, plant and animal life, waters, soils and materials, taking into account the impact on these of nitrogen oxides from sources other than atmospheric deposition;

(b)        Determine the geographical distribution of sensitive areas;

(c)        Develop measurements and model calculations including harmonized methodologies for the calculation of emissions, to quantify the long-range transport of nitrogen oxides and related pollutants;

(d)        improve estimates of the performance and costs of technologies for control of emissions of nitrogen oxides and record the development of improved and new technologies; and

(e)        Develop, in the context of an approach based on critical loads, methods to integrate scientific, technical and economic data in order to determine appropriate control strategies.

Article 7

National programmes, policies and strategies

The Parties shall develop without undue delay national programmes, policies and strategies to implement the obligations under the present Protocol that shall serve as a means of controlling and reducing emissions of nitrogen oxides or their transboundary fluxes.

Article 8

Information exchange and annual reporting

1. The Parties shall exchange information by notifying the Executive Body of the national programmes, policies and strategies that they develop in accordance with article 7 and by reporting to it annually on progress achieved under, and any changes to, those programmes, policies and strategies, and in particular on:

(a)        The levels of national annual emissions of nitrogen oxides and the basis upon which they have been calculated;

(b)        Progress in applying national emission standards required under article 2, subparagraphs 2 (a) and 2 (b), and the national emission standards applied or to be applied, and the sources and/or source categories concerned;

(c) Progress in introducing the pollution control measures required under article 2, subparagraph 2 (c), the sources concerned and the measures introduced or to be introduced;

(d)        Progress in making unleaded fuel available;

(e)        Measures taken to facilitate the exchange of technology; and

(f)        Progress in establishing critical loads.

2. such information shall, as far as possible, be submitted in accordance with a uniform reporting framework.

Article 9

Calculations

EMEP shall, utilizing appropriate models and in good time before the annual meetings of the Executive Body, provide to the Executive Body calculations of nitrogen budgets and also of transboundary fluxes and deposition of nitrogen oxides within the geographical scope of EMEP. In areas outside the geographical scope of EMEP, models appropriate to the particular circumstances of Parties to the Convention therein shall be used.

Article 10

Technical Annex

The Technical Annex to the present Protocol is recommendatory in character. It shall form an integral part of the Protocol.

Article 11 Amendments to the Protocol

1. 

Ver también

Protocol dealing with Long-Term Financing (1984)

The Contracting Parties, Recalling that the Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (hereinafter referred to …