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  • 2-July-2020

    English

    Improving resource efficiency and the circularity of economies for a greener world

    Global demand for materials has been growing over the past century, driven by a steady economic growth in OECD countries, the industrialisation of emerging economies and a growing world population. At the global level, materials use more than doubled between 1990 and 2017, and it is projected to double again by 2060. Due to the growing amounts of materials use, environmental pressures such as land degradation, greenhouse gas emissions and the dispersion of toxic substances in the environment are projected to more than double in the decades to come. In this context, improving resource efficiency and stimulating the transition towards a more circular economy has become crucial. In recent years an increasing number of governments have started implementing policies and strategies to meet this objective, but stronger efforts are needed to significantly improve the sustainability of materials management and the circularity of economies across the world.
  • 1-July-2020

    English

    Blog: Towards a Clean Energy Transition in Viet Nam

    Since the passage of the Paris Agreement and the adoption of the SDGs, clean energy has fast become a priority item on the global agenda. The push for a green recovery following the COVID-19 pandemic has reinforced this trend.

  • 30-June-2020

    English

    Addressing the social consequences of tariffs for water supply and sanitation

    Where they exist, tariffs for water supply and sanitation services face a tension between different policy objectives, such as ensuring the financial sustainability of service provision and ensuring access to all, including vulnerable and poor social groups. Governments (local and national) resort to a range of measures to reconcile these objectives and address social consequences of tariffs: tariff levels and structures, nudging, budgetary transfers, targeted social measures. The paper revisits most common practices and discusses their pros and cons, and requisites to make them work. It provides up-to-date analyses on a series of related issues, such as definitions of affordability, principle for cost recovery, benefits and costs of metering, elasticity of domestic water use to prices, fiscal transfers to water services. The paper is informed by recent academic research, data on selected countries, and interactions with OECD bodies.
  • 29-June-2020

    English

    Test No. 458: Stably Transfected Human Androgen Receptor Transcriptional Activation Assay for Detection of Androgenic Agonist and Antagonist Activity of Chemicals

    This Test Guideline describes in vitro assays, which use Androgen Receptor TransActivation (ARTA) to detect Androgen Receptor Agonists and Antagonists. The ARTA assay methods are mechanistically and functionally similar test methods that provide information on the transcription and translation of a reporter gene following the binding of a chemical to the androgen receptor and subsequent transactivation. The cell lines used in these assays express AR and have been stably transfected with an AR-responsive luciferase reporter gene, and are used to identify chemicals that activate (i.e. act as agonist) or inhibit (i.e. act as antagonists) AR-dependent transcription. Some chemicals may, in a cell type-dependent manner, display both agonist and antagonist activity and are known as selective AR modulators. The AR is activated following ligand binding, after which the receptor-ligand complex binds to specific DNA responsive elements and transactivates the receptor gene, resulting in an increase cellular expression of the luciferase enzyme. The enzyme then transforms the substrate to a bioluminescent product that can be quantitatively measured with a luminometer. This Test Guideline includes ARTA assays using the AR-EcoScreenTM cell line, the AR-CALUX® cell line, and 22Rv1/MMTV_GR-KO cell line.
  • 29-June-2020

    English

    Test No. 491: Short Time Exposure In Vitro Test Method for Identifying i) Chemicals Inducing Serious Eye Damage and ii) Chemicals Not Requiring Classification for Eye Irritation or Serious Eye Damage

    This Test Guideline describes a cytotoxicity-based in vitro assay that is performed on a confluent monolayer of Statens Seruminstitut Rabbit Cornea (SIRC) cells, cultured on a 96-well polycarbonate microplate. After five-minute exposure to a test chemical, the cytotoxicity is quantitatively measured as the relative viability of SIRC cells using the MTT assay. Decreased cell viability is used to predict potential adverse effects leading to ocular damage. Cell viability is assessed by the quantitative measurement, after extraction from the cells, of blue formazan salt produced by the living cells by enzymatic conversion of the vital dye MTT, also known as Thiazolyl Blue Tetrazolium Bromide. The obtained cell viability is compared to the solvent control (relative viability) and used to estimate the potential eye hazard of the test chemical. A test chemical is classified as UN GHS Category 1 when both the 5% and 0.05% concentrations result in a cell viability smaller than or equal to (≤) 70%. Conversely, a chemical is predicted as UN GHS No Category when both 5% and 0.05% concentrations result in a cell viability higher than (>) 70%.
  • 25-June-2020

    English

    EU4Environment virtual consultation with Belarus

    On 25 June 2020, the EU4Environment Implementing Partners, jointly with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection of Belarus, held a virtual consultation. The objectives were to review the in-country situation in light of COVID-19; present progress with EU4Environment implementation; discuss plans for the rest of the year in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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  • 25-June-2020

    English

    The Role of Sovereign and Strategic Investment Funds in the Low-carbon Transition

    Sovereign wealth funds manage a large share of the world’s invested capital. The action or inaction of these funds on climate finance is of crucial importance to the world’s ability to reach the goals of the Paris Agreement, and restrain global warming to below 2 degrees Celsius. However, sovereign wealth funds have so far played a very limited role in climate finance. This report provides guidance on how governments can support their sovereign wealth funds in becoming climate-aligned commercial investors. The establishment of synergies between sovereign wealth funds and strategic investment funds can help scale up investments in clean-energy infrastructure.
  • 23-June-2020

    English

    OECD Secretary-General's Report to Ministers 2020

    The OECD works on finding evidence-based solutions to a range of social, economic and environmental challenges, promoting 'Better Policies for Better Lives'. The global spread of coronavirus in 2020 has made the commitment to this motto all the more relevant. This edition of the OECD Secretary-General's Report to Ministers outlines the main achievements of the OECD in 2019. It describes the OECD’s work on economics, employment, education, health, inequalities, the environment, tax and many other fields in the context of a rapidly changing world. It includes the activities of the Secretary-General and his office, as well as those of OECD directorates, agencies, special entities and advisory committees. The OECD is one of the world’s largest and most trusted sources of comparable statistical data and research. It is also a unique forum and knowledge hub for exchange of experiences, best-practice sharing, and advice on public policies and global standard-setting. This year will mark the 60th anniversary of the Organisation, and this will be the opportunity to reflect on the past, and develop a vision for the future. More than ever, we need evidence-based policies geared towards building societies and economies that are more resilient, inclusive and sustainable.
  • 22-June-2020

    English

    Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition High-Level Dialogue

    The OECD has been working hard to help countries navigate the pandemic and to sow the policy seeds needed to “build back better”. This is a key objective of our COVID-19 Policy Hub, which contains over 100 policy briefs, as well as a country policy tracker and extensive data.

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  • 22-June-2020

    English

    OECD Biotechnology Update

    Read our newsletter to stay up-to-date with all the latest OECD work on biotechnology.

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