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The Aarhus Convention Reporting Mechanism. National Implementation Reports 2011 Experience and lessons learned Aphrodite Smagadi, Aarhus Convention secretariat Reporting cycles. Two reporting cycles since establishment of reporting mechanism (Decision I/8)

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the aarhus convention reporting mechanism

The Aarhus Convention Reporting Mechanism

National Implementation Reports 2011

Experience and lessons learned

Aphrodite Smagadi, Aarhus Convention secretariat

reporting cycles
Reporting cycles
  • Two reporting cycles since establishment of reporting mechanism (Decision I/8)
    • First cycle (2005): 26 reports

(30 Parties) = 87%

    • Second cycle (2008): 35 reports

(41 Parties) = 85%

  • Third cycle (2011) – 44 Parties
  • Valuable information provided
  • Positive developments in legislative frameworks and practical implementation
  • Challenges to implementation identified
practical challenges
Practical challenges
  • Content – not always adequately addressed
  • Format and process
  • Timing and resources
content challenge
Content: challenge
  • Some reports did not provide adequate answers to the questions


    • Parties provided lists of instruments without clarifying how they transposed the provisions of the Convention into national law
    • Requested information was provided in answer to different question
content recommendation
Content: recommendation
  • Address all questions
    • Do not forget GMO amendment
    • PPIF reporting format may be used as pilot
  • Consult guidance document prepared by the Compliance Committee
format challenges
Format: challenges
  • Reports did not follow reporting format
  • Lack of clear structure
  • Secretariat had to re-format (agreed on a format with documents division)
format recommendations
Format: recommendations
  • First time?
    • Follow the structure of 2008 reports
  • Second or third time?
    • Use the previous report and work with track changes to
      • Enable recording of changes
      • Facilitate the translation
    • If previous report not published as official UN document, use submitted version + track changes
process challenge
Process: challenge

Public participation process was criticized as not having been performed in an adequate manner

process recommendations
Process: recommendations
  • Start as early as possible
    • REMEMBER: report must be submitted by second week of December 2010
  • Two public consultations:
    • First: on the content of the report, before the first draft
    • Second: for comments, to incorporate in a subsequent draft
timing challenge
Timing: challenge
  • Reports were submitted after the deadline (some after MOP-3)
    • Translation delays
    • Refusal of UN conference services to translate and process as UN official documents
timing recommendation
Timing: recommendation
  • Submit the reports by the set deadline:
  • 8 December 2010
2011 reporting cycle
2011 Reporting cycle
  • Despite challenges, Parties decided at their third meeting (June 2008) to continue current reporting practice until MOP-4 (June 2011)
  • New electronic database in Aarhus Clearinghouse aims to make information easily accessible & allow for online submission of reports:
compliance committee guidance process
Compliance Committee GuidanceProcess
  • Enable broad, effective participation, as early as possible
    • Inter- and intra-agency consultations (identify in advance)
    • Public/stakeholder consultations (multi-stakeholder working groups)
    • Publicly available drafts
    • In the national language
compliance committee guidance content
Compliance Committee GuidanceContent
  • New information
  • Information on practical implementation
  • Common areas of difficulties
cc guidance new information
CC Guidance: new information
  • Significant amendments in the laws, regulations, etc.
  • Official interpretation of the laws
  • Guidance to the public on how to exercise their laws
  • New practical measures/arrangements with public authorities
  • Track-changes (consolidated report)
cc guidance practical implementation info
CC Guidance: practical implementation info
  • Challenge: insufficient information
  • Provide information on
    • practical measures
    • institutional arrangements
    • working groups
    • any budgetary allocation
    • capacity building (training)
cc guidance content checklist
CC Guidance: content checklist
  • Be specific
  • Follow the non-prescriptive list for possible consideration in the preparation of the NIRs (annex to the CC guidance for reporting)