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PIB Summaries 19 September 2023

CONTENTS

  1. International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML)
  2. World Ozone Day 2023

International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML)


Context:

Recently, India has become the 13th country that can issue OIML (International Organization of Legal Metrology) Certificates.

Relevance:

Facts for Prelims

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Legal Metrology
  2. International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML)
  3. Significance of India Becoming an OIML Certificate Authority

Legal Metrology

  • Legal Metrology is a specialized field within metrology that deals with the regulation and legal aspects of measurements and measuring instruments. It encompasses the development of regulations, standards, and practices to ensure precision, uniformity, and equity in commercial dealings and various domains where measurements are vital.
  • Metrology: Metrology, in a broader sense, is the science and practice of measurement. It involves the study of measurement systems, units of measurement, measurement techniques, and the development of measurement standards.

Key Objective:

  • The primary aim of legal metrology is to safeguard the interests of both consumers and producers.
  • It achieves this by establishing transparent and consistent guidelines for measurements in various contexts, ensuring that products are accurately measured and labeled.
  • This fosters trust and equity in commercial transactions and regulatory compliance.

International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML)

  • Formation and Headquarters: The International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML) was established in 1955, with its headquarters located in Paris, France.
  • Role and Purpose: OIML serves as a prominent international standard-setting body. Its primary mission is to develop and promote international standards, regulations, and related documents that are specifically designed for use by legal metrology authorities and industries worldwide.
  • Harmonization: A key function of the OIML is to facilitate the harmonization of national laws and regulations related to measurement accuracy and instrument performance. This harmonization helps ensure that measuring instruments, such as clinical thermometers, alcohol breath analyzers, radar speed measuring devices, ship tank gauges, and petrol dispensing units, adhere to consistent standards across different countries.
  • Membership: India became a member of the OIML in 1956, reflecting its commitment to international cooperation in legal metrology. The OIML has member states from around the world.
  • Metric Convention: The OIML’s work aligns with the Metric Convention of 1875, also known as the Metre Convention or Treaty of the Metre, which was signed in Paris on May 20, 1875. This treaty laid the foundation for the modern metric system and established the International System of Units (SI).
  • World Metrology Day: May 20th, the date when the Metric Convention was signed, is celebrated as World Metrology Day. This observance highlights the importance of measurement standards and their impact on various aspects of society.
  • OIML-CS (Certificate System): The OIML Certificate System (OIML-CS) is a structured system for the issuance, registration, and utilization of OIML certificates. These certificates, along with associated OIML type evaluation or test reports, are used to verify the conformity of measuring instruments like digital balances, clinical thermometers, and more.
  • Global Acceptance: OIML Pattern Approval certificates are globally recognized and accepted. This recognition allows products to be sold in international markets with the assurance that they meet standardized metrological requirements.
  • Countries with OIML Certification Authority: As of now, 13 countries, including Australia, Switzerland, China, the Czech Republic, Germany, Denmark, France, the United Kingdom, Japan, the Netherlands, Sweden, Slovakia, and India, are authorized to issue OIML certificates.

Significance of India Becoming an OIML Certificate Authority

Facilitating Exports:

  • India’s designation as an OIML certificate authority holds significant importance for Indian manufacturers and exporters. Previously, Indian equipment manufacturers had to seek certification from one of the 12 eligible countries, often resulting in additional costs and logistics.
  • Now, they can obtain OIML certificates within India. This simplifies the export process and makes Indian products more competitive in the global market.

Global Acceptance:

  • With OIML certification issued within India, equipment and instruments can be exported to any country in the world without the need for additional testing or certification.
  • This global recognition enhances the marketability of Indian products and assures international customers of their compliance with established metrological standards.

Economic Benefits:

  • India’s status as an OIML certificate authority is expected to yield several economic benefits. Firstly, it is likely to lead to an increase in exports, as Indian manufacturers can now access a wider global market.
  • Secondly, by enabling equipment manufacturers from neighboring countries to seek certification in India, the country stands to earn foreign exchange.
  • Additionally, the process of certification and testing may generate employment opportunities within the country.

Regional Hub for Certification:

  • India’s newfound role as an OIML certificate authority makes it an attractive destination for neighboring countries and manufacturers seeking certification.
  • This could position India as a regional hub for metrological certification services, further bolstering its foreign exchange earnings and economic standing in the region.

World Ozone Day 2023


Context:

Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) recently celebrated the 29th World Ozone Day.

Relevance:

GS III: Environment and Ecology

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. World Ozone Day
  2. Montreal Protocol
  3. Ozone

World Ozone Day

  • World Ozone Day, also known as the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer, is observed annually on September 16.
  • Purpose: The day is dedicated to raising awareness among people about the depletion of the Ozone Layer and to highlight the measures taken and those to be undertaken to preserve it.
  • Theme (2023): The theme for World Ozone Day in 2023 is “Montreal Protocol: fixing the ozone layer and reducing climate change.”
  • History: The United Nations General Assembly declared September 16 as the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer in 1994. This date commemorates the signing of the Montreal Protocol on substances that deplete the ozone layer in 1987. The protocol was signed on September 16, 1987, in Montreal, Canada, and was aimed at addressing the depletion of the ozone layer.

Montreal Protocol

  • The Montreal Protocol is an international treaty with the objective of phasing out the production and consumption of ozone-depleting substances, such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), halons, carbon tetrachloride, and other chemicals.
  • These substances were commonly used in applications like refrigeration, air conditioning, and aerosol propellants.
Kigali Agreement:
  • The Kigali Agreement is an amendment to the Montreal Protocol. Adopted on October 15, 2016, in Kigali, Rwanda, this amendment extends the scope of the Montreal Protocol.
  • While the original protocol focused on ozone-depleting substances, the Kigali Amendment addresses the phase-down of Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), which are used as replacements for the ozone-depleting substances.
  • Its primary goal is to reduce the production and consumption of HFCs to mitigate their contribution to global warming.

Ozone

  • Composition: Ozone is a gas composed of three oxygen atoms (O3).
  • Natural and Man-made: It occurs both naturally and as a result of human activities. In the Earth’s upper atmosphere (stratosphere), it forms the “ozone layer,” acting as a protective barrier against harmful ultraviolet (UV-B) radiation from the sun. Ground-level ozone (tropospheric ozone) is formed through photochemical reactions between air pollutants, specifically volatile organic compounds (VOC) and nitrogen oxides (NOx), and is harmful to human health and the environment.

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