Kenyan Parliament Urged To Ratify Key Environment Treaties

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Environment and Climate Change, Principal Secretary of Kenya Festus K Ng’eno on Thursday presented key treaties that require ratification by the country’s National Assembly.

The instruments include the Kigali Amendments to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that deplete the Ozone Layer, the Bamako Convention on the Ban of Hazardous Waste and the Nairobi Convention on the protection of Marine and Coastal Environment.

Ng’eno made the presentation to the Departmental Committee on Environment, Forestry and Mining at Parliament Building in Nairobi.

The PS said the Bamako Convention is a response to Article 11 of the Basel Convention, which encourages parties to enter into bilateral, multilateral and regional agreements on hazardous waste.

The PS added that although it was negotiated by 12 nations of the African Union and came into force in 1998 with 29 signatories and 25 State Parties, Kenya is yet to ratify.

He emphasized the importance of ratification, which he said will minimize the transboundary movement of hazardous waste and enable Kenya to access multilateral funds to support domestication.

On Kigali Amendments, Ng’eno said the objective is to prevent damage to human health and the environment by phasing out the production and consumption of substances that deplete the Ozone Layer.

“Phasing out Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) will also mitigate against the effects of climate change,” he explained.

The PS cited financial and technical cooperation, transfer of technologies, adoption of Ozone and climate-friendly technologies, and contribution to national climate change targets as some of the economic, social and environmental impacts.

On the Nairobi Convention, he said ratifying and amending the instrument will enhance goal number 14 of the Sustainable Development Goals, which seeks to conserve and sustainably use the ocean, seas and marine resources.

The Nairobi Convention and Protocol for the protection of the marine and coastal environment of the Western Indian Ocean from land-based sources and activities was adopted in 2010.

“Kenya is the environmental capital of the world and it behoves us to be a leader of environmental matters. These treaties will help Kenya mitigate against hazardous waste and impacts of climate change,” Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Dr Korir Sing’oei said.

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