Interview with Sydney
After receiving the award you spoke about “amazing global success stories that go beyond conventional thoughts”: What did you mean by this? What are the success stories and what are the conventional thoughts?
The global cooperation on the developmental aid has not produced the desired results so far since the inception of United Nations. The conventional thoughts are centered on the arguments that developed countries have not done enough for the developing countries and that developing countries have not shown the effective governance and use of the assistance to reach to the desired goal. The Montreal Protocol is good example how the assistance to the developing countries could be effectively used to achieve the agreed goals and how the developed countries remained engaged in the process of providing adequate financial assistance without interruption .
The conventional thoughts also revolve around the fact that environmental costs are burden to the development and they lower the profits, The Montreal Protocol has shown that alternative processes that save the Ozone Layer can be more profitable and the development process did not get affected during the transition away from ODS.
All above go beyond the conventional thinking and they have made this international agreement of the Montreal Protocol effective treaty . The Protocol has increasingly being recognised as a rare and important multi-lateral success story. In his recent report that proposes the reforms in United nations, entitled, “In Larger Freedom: Towards Development, Security and Human Rights for All,” UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, described the Montreal Protocol as an “encouraging example showing how global solutions can be found.”
Skin cancer is a significant public health issue in Australia. What has Australia’s role been in countering Ozone depletion?
Australia right from the beginning was the strong supporter of the Montreal Protocol. It has been in fore front to take actions amidst the industry cry in the beginning that alternative technologies are not possible and that it will be great drag to the ‘capitalist order’. It , though its CSIR network of the institutes provided invaluable observations of the Ozone Layer and its depletion.
Australia also strongly supported in making the control measures under the Montreal Protocol more and more stringent. It phased out its production and consumption of CFCs and other ODS well in time and assisted the developing countries through technical and financial assistance. Australian Government worked very closely with the UNEP OzonAction programme for initiating the actions in the Pacific Island countries and made great contributions in joining UNEP efforts in providing the policy guidance and training to the developing countries. Australia is also the key member of the UNEP’s Regional network of the national Ozone Unites in South east Asia and instrumental in phase out of number of ODS in the countries in the region.
In fact Australia has well proven record and ability that it can now use for the implementation of the climate change programmes.