The Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer was set into force on 1 January 1989. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) acts as the national coordinator for its implementation in the Philippines. The First Philippine Country Program for the Phaseout of Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) was prepared in May 1993. This Program specified the Philippine ODS phase-out schedules and laid out the plans, programs, and activities that the country would undertake in phasing out ODS. As a developing country, the Philippines was provided with financial assistance from the Multilateral Fund for ODS phase-out projects.
Through the DENR Environmental Management Bureau (EMB), the Philippine Ozone Desk (POD) was created to facilitate and coordinate ODS phase-out projects and policies. The roles of POD are the following:
Completed investment projects funded by the Multilateral Fund of the Montreal Protocol have phased out about 1,300 MT of ODS in various industry sectors. Regulations were also issued to control ODS importation. An Active information, education and communication program was implemented to make both the industry sector and general public aware of the ozone depletion problem and the need to suport ODS phaseout.
For these efforts, the Philippines was awarded the “Outstanding National Ozone Unit Award for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol” by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in 1997. During the same year, the country received another award for “Leadership in the Phaseout of ODS in the Solvent Sector” from USEPA.
Presently, there are three on-going projects under the POD: the Institutional Strengthening Project (ISP), the Methyl Bromide Phase-out Strategy Formulation, and the National CFC Phase-out Plan.