On 3-4 February 2022 the Convention’s Working Group on Implementation (WGI) organized a special session for a seminar on good practices and lessons learned in implementing the UNECE Convention on the Transboundary Effects of Industrial Accidents. The seminar was held in Geneva and online via zoom.

The main objective of the special session was to hold a seminar that promotes good practices and lessons learned in the implementation of the Industrial Accidents Convention in order to help overcome implementation gaps by facilitating the exchange of information among Parties and other countries. National authorities made presentations on good practices and lessons learned from their countries to a broad audience. The target audience includes national authorities, operators of hazardous installations, partner organizations, scholars and students, within and beyond the UNECE region.

The seminar was organized into six thematic sessions, in recognition of the different sections in the national implementation reports:

  • Identification and notification of hazardous activities;
  • Prevention of industrial accidents;
  • Emergency preparedness, response and mutual assistance;
  • Information to and participation of the public;
  • Decision-making on siting and land-use planning;
  • Scientific and technical cooperation and exchange of information.

Each thematic session included: an overview of relevant provisions of the Industrial Accidents Convention, gaps that the WGI identified in the ninth report on the implementation of the Convention 2016–2018; relevant actions contained in decision 2020/2 on strengthening the implementation of the Convention; country presentations on good practices and/or lessons learned in addressing those gaps or on addressing a new and emerging risk under the thematic session; and discussion between the moderator, presenters, secretariat and audience. Members of the WGI who are involved in the respective preparatory group moderated the thematic sessions.

Overall conclusions and recommendations of the seminar were that good practices and lessons learned presented at the seminar were welcomed, countries should continue reporting good practices and lessons learned through their implementation reports to strengthen the knowledge base, WGI, in cooperation with the secretariat, is encouraged to continue organizing such seminars on a needs-driven basis, Parties and committed countries are encouraged to request assistance from the secretariat to assist them in implementing the Convention and understanding & applying good practices, establishment of an interactive network is recommended for the exchange of information and sharing experience about the implementation of the Convention, and development of a UNECE Guide on Good Practices in Implementing the Industrial Accidents Convention is recommended.