GEF-UNIDO PROJECT
«ENVIRONMENTALLY SOUND MANAGEMENT AND FINAL DISPOSAL OF POLYCHLORINATED BIPHENYLS (PCBs) IN UKRAINE»

Global Environment Facility (GEF) was established in 1991 as an independently operating financial organization that provides project grants for developing countries. 

The GEF provides grants for projects related to biodiversity, climate change, international waters, land degradation, the ozone layer, and persistent organic pollutants. The GEF unites 182 countries in partnership with international institutions, NGOs, civil society organizations, and the private sector to address global environmental issues while supporting national sustainable development initiatives.

Today, the GEF is the largest public funder of projects to improve the global environment. Since 1991, the GEF has achieved a strong track record with developing countries and countries with economies in transition, providing $12.5 billion in grants and leveraging $58 billion in co-financing for over 3,690 projects in over 165 countries.

The GEF has a unique governing structure organized around an Assembly, the Council, the Secretariat, 18 Agencies, a Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) and the Evaluation Office. It serves as a financial mechanism for several environmental conventions. GEF Agencies are responsible for creating project proposals and for managing GEF projects. Some GEF Agencies include United Nations Development Program, United Nations Environment Program, World Bank, Food and Agriculture Organization, United Nations Industrial Development Organization, Asian Development Bank, African Development Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, International Fund for Agricultural Development.

United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) is a specialized agency in the United Nations system, aimed at promotion and acceleration of industrial development in developing countries and countries with economies in transition and the promotion of international industrial cooperation. 

As of 1 January 2014, 171 states are members of UNIDO. The General Conference is the highest policy-making organ of the Organization. The UNIDO is headquartered in Vienna, Austria; it works towards improving the quality of life of developing countries by providing technical cooperation to implement their development plans for sustainable industrialization in their public, cooperative and private sectors.

UNIDO maintains a variety of databases comprising statistics of overall industrial growth, detailed data on business structure and statistics on major indicators of industrial performance by country in the historical time series.

The GEF-UNIDO Project "Environmentally sound management and final disposal of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in Ukraine" is aimed at identification, gradual phase-out and disposal of PCB-containing equipment and waste in Ukraine. According to the project document, approved by the GEF, Executive Agency for the project in Ukraine is the State Ecological Academy of Postgraduate studies that is coordinated by the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine.

OBJECTIVES AND OUTCOMES

Objectives of The GEF-UNIDO Project "Environmentally sound management and final disposal of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in Ukraine" include reducing environmental risks, caused by PCBs through establishment of new and improving already existing legislation on PCB management, raising people’s awareness on the subject and conducting trainings in compliance with the best environmental practices. 

The Project will assist in conducting in-depth inventory of electrical equipment containing mineral oils contaminated with PCBs, resulting from misuse of equipment. The project is also aimed at implementation of pilot equipment and technologies for decontamination of PCB-containing equipment and disposal of PCB-containing waste.  

Project priorities:

  • Creating a mechanism for environmentally sound management of PCBs
  • Adopting regulations of the Stockholm Convention related to PCBs 
  • Assessment and development of technical backup for disposal of PCBs in Ukraine and implementation of a pilot project for environmentally safe disposal of 3,000 tons of PCB-containing oil, equipment and waste.

The GEF project consists of three basic components: 

Component 1 - Institutional, regulatory and human resources support for PCB management.

  1. Strengthening of legal framework for efficient PCB management and disposal in line with the Stockholm Convention;
  2. Development of regulations and guidelines on PCB management and disposal covering entire life cycle of PCB management;
  3. Development of regulations and guidelines on emergency response measures related to PCB management;
  4. Conducting sharing workshops for industries and civil society to inform them about the proposed regulatory changes in PCB management;
  5. Adapting internationally proven methods of PCB analysis to the Ukrainian legislation;
  6. Assessment of the Ukrainian laboratory capacity to analyze large amounts of PCB samples.

Component 2.   Defining priority measures based on reliable in-depth inventory and national management plan for PCBs

  1. Development of the national plan for PCB inventory
  2. Development of the national register database for PCB-containing equipment
  3. Conducting screening tests of 5 000 transformer oil samples containing PCBs (10 000 – in 4 years). Labeling of inspected equipment. 

Component 3.  The system of environmentally sound management (ESM) and removal of PCBs, including transfer of technology and its introduction.

  1. Conducting a review of the current state of technology in Ukraine for safe PCB decontamination and disposal
  2. Development  of Terms of Reference for UNIDO centralized open bidding for providing handling, decontamination and disposal services 

The national expert team consists of specialists and consultants of leading scientific institutions of Ukraine who have a successful track record in the field of persistent organic pollutants. These include the Gas Institute and the Institute of Environmental Geochemistry of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, L. I. Medved’s Research Center of Preventive Toxicology, Food and Chemical Safety of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine and the State Environmental Academy of Postgraduate Studies of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine.

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