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Aarhus Convention Comes of Age

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The Fourth Session of the Meeting of the Parties (MoP) to the Aarhus Convention, which culminated yesterday in Chisinau, saw governments and non-governmental organizations debating on what is by now the regular business of Aarhus MoPs: mandates of task forces on information, participation and justice being renewed and revised, several Parties being publicly rebuked for being in non-compliance and asked to take corrective measures, and discussions on the content of the forthcoming work programme and how it will be funded.. The area on which the sharpest disagreement between governments and NGOs emerged was over the extent to which countries outside the UNECE region should be facilitated in acceding to the Convention – perhaps a sign that the Convention has come of age, and of a growing perception that now the time has come to share its benefits worldwide.