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The 28th Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (MOP 28) adopted the Kigali Amendment to phase down hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).

By the Kigali Amendment, developed countries, or “non-Article 5 parties,” commit to begin to phase down HFCs by 2019.

Governments agreed to two Article 5 groupings, with most Article 5 parties freezing their HFC consumption levels in 2024, and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), India, Iran, Iraq, and Pakistan freezing their consumption in 2028.

14 October 2016: The 28th Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (MOP 28) adopted the Kigali Amendment to phase down hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) described the agreement as “the single largest contribution the world has made towards keeping the global temperature rise well below two degrees Celsius, a target agreed at the Paris Climate Conference last year.”

MOP 28 met from 10-14 October 2016, in Kigali, Rwanda, immediately following a one-day resumed session of the 38th Open-ended Working Group (OEWG 38). Over 500 participants from governments, UN agencies, intergovernmental organizations, NGOs, academia, and industry attended the joint meeting.

By the Kigali Amendment, developed countries, or “non-Article 5 parties,” commit to begin to phase down HFCs by 2019. Governments agreed to two Article 5 groupings, with most Article 5 parties freezing their HFC consumption levels in 2024, and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), India, Iran, Iraq, and Pakistan freezing their consumption in 2028. As part of a package agreement, countries adopted several related decisions on phase-down schedules, exemptions for high-ambient temperature (HAT) countries, and financial and technical support for Article 5 parties.

The Earth Negotiations Bulletin (ENB) reports that over the course of the week, many heated discussions took place, and Parties “went to the brink and back,” and the process had “moments of near collapse,” before the Kigali Amendment was agreed to at 6:54 am on Saturday morning following a nearly 24-hour marathon to finalize the details. According to ENB, the Amendment “tackles a critical global challenge, provides room for ambition while achieving universal agreement and honors the spirit of the Montreal Protocol by achieving consensus and relying on the wisdom of the Protocol’s founders who allowed for both amendments and adjustments.” One delegate said MOP 28 had yielded “an agreement that we will be proud of for the rest of our lives.”

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the Kigali Amendment as building on “strong global momentum for multilateral efforts to address climate change,” including the Paris Agreement; the adoption by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) of a global, market-based mechanism for reducing aviation emissions; and other multilateral efforts under the UN Framework for Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC) process. Ban added that the Kigali Amendment will help advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

UNEP Executive Director Erik Solheim remarked that the agreement is about “much more than the ozone layer and HFCs. It is a clear statement by all world leaders that the green transformation started in Paris is irreversible and unstoppable. It shows the best investments are those in clean, efficient technologies.”

MOP 28 also adopted decisions on: essential-use exemptions (EUEs) and critical-use exemptions (CUEs); and the Terms of Reference (TOR) for the study on the 2018-2020 replenishment of the Multilateral Fund (MLF); budget; organizational issues related to the TEAP; and membership of Montreal Protocol bodies.

MOP 28 immediately followed a one-day meeting where parties agreed to continue work in a contact group on the feasibility and ways of managing HFCs and further agreed to establish a Legal Drafting Group to formulate legal text on an amendment for the MOP’s consideration. [IISD RS Coverage of MOP 28] [UN Press Release] [UNEP Press Release] [UN Secretary-General Statement] [IISD RS Story on ICAO Agreement]


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