The UNECE Convention on the Transboundary Effects of Industrial Accidents (or Industrial Accidents Convention) aims to protect, in the interest of present and future generations, human beings and the environment against the effects of industrial accidents.
The Convention’s three main pillars are the prevention of, preparedness for and response to industrial accidents capable of having transboundary effects, including effects of such accidents caused by natural disasters. Provisions within the Convention provide measures for countries to prevent accidents from occurring and, if they occur, to reduce their frequency and severity and mitigate their effects. This includes, among other obligations, Parties identifying and taking actions against hazardous activities within their jurisdiction that could have effects across borders. Parties are also required to take appropriate measures to establish and maintain adequate emergency preparedness to respond to industrial accidents.
The Convention also promotes international cooperation between countries. If Parties identify hazardous activities within their jurisdiction that could have effects across borders, they are required to notify any affected Parties. Parties are also encouraged to help each other in the event of an accident, cooperate on research and development and share information and technology. Furthermore, the Convention’s flagship Assistance and Cooperation Programme supports countries with economies in transition in Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, Central Asia and South-Eastern Europe to implement the Convention and enhance their industrial safety and transboundary cooperation.