Press Release - The Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) has been presented with a United States Environmental Protection Agency Ozone Layer Protection Award for 2009.

The award, established in 1990, recognizes outstanding contributions to ozone layer protection and places SPREP among some of the world's most accomplished individuals and organizations working in this area.

SPREP, the region's leader in environmental management and conservation, has coordinated regional ozone protection activities since its inception. SPREP's work with Pacific island countries and territories has resulted in implementation of national legislation and other measures in the shift away from ozone-depleting substances throughout the region.

In an award ceremony held in Washington, DC, EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson stated, "to confront urgent environmental issues, we're counting on the types of ideas and innovations that this year's winners developed. Recognising and encouraging their accomplishments is important to the work we have ahead of us."

SPREP's Climate Change Adviser, Espen Ronneberg, added that the award "recognises the efforts of the region to deal with this important environmental issue. While the region contributes little to the global emissions of ozone depleting substances, it is certainly doing its part to address the problem, and it is gratifying to get this recognition from the USEPA."

For more information on the EPA Ozone Layer Protection Awards, please visit