In recent years, the public's "right to know" has moved to the forefront of environmental policy making. A Pollutant Release and Transfer Register (PRTR) is a key tool for governments to provide the public with data regarding the amount of hazardous chemicals and pollutants released to air, water and soil and transferred off-site for treatment or disposal.
OECD has been supporting the development and implementation of PRTR systems in member countries by developing several guidance manuals and technical documents. The OECD is also managing a few web-based databases in order to encourage governments and other stakeholders to share PRTR data and technical information.
OECD work on PRTRs is overseen by the Task Force on PRTRs. The activities aim at:
- Developing practical tools and guidance to help member countries implement a PRTR;
- Outreaching activities to non-member economies, including the provision of information and technical support; and
- Promoting communication and a close working relationship between the OECD Task Force on PRTRs and other relevant organisations.
Among technical and practical aspects, special focus goes to the dissemination and use of PRTR data, and release estimation techniques under a PRTR scheme.