NGO response to the Recommendations for continuing SAICM and a preparatory process for the postponed IP4 and ICCM5Blog
HEJSupport coordinated an NGO response to the draft Recommendations for continuing SAICM and a preparatory process for the postponed IP4 and ICCM5 prepared by SAICM Secretariat 9SAICM/ICCM.5/Bureau.TC.7/2.
NGOs agree with the approach identified in the document SAICM/ICCM.5/Bureau.TC.7/2, including the recommendation to “Extend the SAICM instrument in its current form due to force majeure circumstances until ICCM5 can formally convene (including the bureau, secretariat and any existing subsidiary institutional arrangements)”.
They also agree with the suggested scenario that “In mid-2021, the ICCM administrative decisions on the continuation of SAICM, its work programme and budget are taken using the silence procedure.”
SAICM/ICCM.5/Bureau.TC.7/2 document also includes a recommendation for “a biennial work programme (including ongoing and/or new SAICM work, any provisions for extending the work of the IP)”. We believe that such a work programe should make a clear reference to the existing SAICM Global Plan of Actions, including agreed actions on SAICM Emerging Policy Issues and Issues of Concern. These actions have already been agreed upon by all SAICM stakeholders and thus, they do not need to be discussed again.
However, if the biennial work programme includes “new SAICM work” as suggested in the draft recommendations, it might require discussions by SAICM stakeholders and will delay risk reduction activities further.
The stakeholders should use the time between now and the face-to-face meetings to address gaps identified in the Global Chemical Outlook and the UNEP assessment report of Issues of Concern towards achieving the 2020 goal and contribute to the 2030 Agenda. Thus, we would like to emphasize that the suggested biennial work programme should clearly underline steps towards achieving meaningful prevention and reduction of toxic chemicals use, emissions, waste generation, and contamination of people and the environment. The evaluation of the implementation of the biennial programme should be conducted prior to ICCM5 to identify the remaining gaps.
NGOs therefore request the SAICM President, SAICM Bureau, and SAICM Secretariat to draft a decision on extending the current SAICM mandate, including its Global Plan of Actions until a new instrument is adopted. This decision should be taken in a silent procedure as suggested in the draft Recommendations. The implementation of this decision should go in parallel with the decision to continue the ICCM4 IP-mandate until ICCM5 can formally convene.
The NGO response can be downloaded here.