Interview with Pune Herald
2. What is the relevance of OzonAction research and initiative for a
developing country like India?
The Programme to assist the developing countries was launched in UNEP’s Division of Technology, Industry and Economics in Paris. The Programme was named ‘OzonAction’. The title of the Programme symbolised that the world needs to take action to prevent the global disaster resulting from the Ozone Layer depletion. Right from beginning, as a head of the programme I set out to manage the programme by objectives and by actions and results. The objective of the programme was to provide strategic guidance and policy advice to the developing countries in enabling their compliance with the Montreal Protocol. The activities included the capacity building of the government and the industries and providing the financial and management assistance in developing the strategies and action plans.
The programme has been evolving as per the needs of the countries. It went through restructuring in 2001 after a decade of its operation. Since then it has grown into multi location world wide service provider supported by 50 strong and expert staff in UNEP’s 5 offices, i.e. Bangkok, Nairobi, Bahrain, Mexico City and Paris. Through this new approach, the Programme regionalized the delivery of capacity building services by placing its Regional Offices at the forefront of project implementation and closer to the countries. The majority of the CAP team is based in UNEP’s Regional Offices where they work closely with the countries on an ongoing basis. We call this as regional delivery as ‘Compliance Assistance Programme’ (CAP).
OzonAction does not carry out the research per se. It conducts activities that prepare the countries to implement the Montreal Protocol. Today, OzonAction is world leader in the activities of ‘human networking’. It networks 147 countries in regular dialogue. It leverages UNEP’s convening authority and its expertise in value addition through consultations and consensus. OzonAction hardware, software and service offerings are used to enable NOUs to create the reliable and sustainable compliance solutions. Through such means the governments, industries and other stakeholders have seamless access to the information, training and other capacity building tools. The services are provided 24 hours and 7 days
OzonAction solutions are not just innovative. In a way, to use private sector semblance, it is competitive as the services are more efficient, timely and they lead to cost savings, process efficiencies and closer relationships with NOUs. One example is the first B2B web portal that promotes use of the recycled halon through the Internet. These relationships are the networking foundations and the heart and arteries of the Compliance Assistance Programme that OzonAction launched in year 2002 to meet the evolving compliance enabling needs of the developing countries.