Paragraphs in "North American Agreement On Environmental Cooperation" coded as DISP

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Label Provision
Art.10 Article 10: Council Functions
Art.10.1 1. The Council shall be the governing body of the Commission and shall:
Art.10.1.a (a) serve as a forum for the discussion of environmental matters within the scope of this Agreement;
Art.10.1.b (b) oversee the implementation and develop recommendations on the further elaboration of this Agreement and, to this end, the Council shall, within four years after the date of entry into force of this Agreement, review its operation and effectiveness in the light of experience;
Art.10.1.c (c) oversee the Secretariat;
Art.10.1.d (d) address questions and differences that may arise between the Parties regarding the interpretation or application of this Agreement;
Art.10.1.e (e) approve the annual program and budget of the Commission; and
Art.10.1.f (f) promote and facilitate cooperation between the Parties with respect to environmental matters.
Art.10.2 2. The Council may consider, and develop recommendations regarding:
Art.10.2.a (a) comparability of techniques and methodologies for data gathering and analysis, data management and electronic data communications on matters covered by this Agreement;
Art.10.2.b (b) pollution prevention techniques and strategies;
Art.10.2.c (c) approaches and common indicators for reporting on the state of the environment;
Art.10.2.d (d) the use of economic instruments for the pursuit of domestic and internationally agreed environmental objectives;
Art.10.2.e (e) scientific research and technology development in respect of environmental matters;
Art.10.2.f (f) promotion of public awareness regarding the environment;
Art.10.2.g (g) transboundary and border environmental issues, such as the long-range transport of air and marine pollutants;
Art.10.2.h (h) exotic species that may be harmful;
Art.10.2.i (i) the conservation and protection of wild flora and fauna and their habitat, and specially protected natural areas;
Art.10.2.j (j) the protection of endangered and threatened species;
Art.10.2.k (k) environmental emergency preparedness and response activities;
Art.10.2.l (1) environmental matters as they relate to economic development;
Art.10.2.m (m) the environmental implications of goods throughout their life cycles;
Art.10.2.n (n) human resource training and development in the environmental field;
Art.10.2.o (o) the exchange of environmental scientists and officials;
Art.10.2.p (p) approaches to environmental compliance and enforcement;
Art.10.2.q (q) ecologically sensitive national accounts;
Art.10.2.r (r) eco-labelling; and
Art.10.2.s (s) other matters as it may decide.
Art.10.3 3. The Council shall strengthen cooperation on the development and continuing improvement of environmental laws and regulations, including by:
Art.10.3.a (a) promoting the exchange of information on criteria and methodologies used in establishing domestic environmental standards; and
Art.10.3.b (b) without reducing levels of environmental protection, establishing a process for developing recommendations on greater compatibility of environmental technical regulations, standards and conformity assessment procedures in a manner consistent with the NAFTA.
Art.10.4 4. The Council shall encourage:
Art.10.4.a (a) effective enforcement by each Party of its environmental laws and regulations;
Art.10.4.b (b) compliance with those laws and regulations; and
Art.10.4.c (c) technical cooperation between the Parties.
Art.10.5 5. The Council shall promote and, as appropriate, develop recommendations regarding:
Art.10.5.a (a) public access to information concerning the environment that is held by public authorities of each Party, including information on hazardous materials and activities in its communities, and opportunity to participate in decision-making processes related to such public access; and
Art.10.5.b (b) appropriate limits for specific pollutants, taking into account differences in ecosystems.
Art.10.6 6. The Council shall cooperate with the NAFTA Free Trade Commission to achieve the environmental goals and objectives of the NAFTA by:
Art.10.6.a (a) acting as a point of inquiry and receipt for comments from non-governmental organizations and persons concerning those goals and objectives;
Art.10.6.b (b) providing assistance in consultations under Article 1114 of the NAFTA where a Party considers that another Party is waiving or derogating from, or offering to waive or otherwise derogate from, an environmental measure as an encouragement to establish, acquire, expand or retain an investment of an investor, with a view to avoiding any such encouragement;
Art.10.6.c (c) contributing to the prevention or resolution of environment-related trade disputes by:
Art.10.6.c.i (i) seeking to avoid disputes between the Parties,
Art.10.6.c.ii (ii)making recommendations to the Free Trade Commission with respect to the avoidance of such disputes, and
Art.10.6.c.iii (iii) identifying experts able to provide information or technical advice to NAFTA committees, working groups and other NAFTA bodies;
Art.10.6.d (d) considering on an ongoing basis the environmental effects of the NAFTA; and
Art.10.6.e (e) otherwise assisting the Free Trade Commission in environment-related matters.
Art.10.7 7. Recognizing the significant bilateral nature of many transboundary environmental issues, the Council shall, with a view to agreement between the Parties pursuant to this Article within three years on obligations, consider and develop recommendations with respect to:
Art.10.7.a (a) assessing the environmental impact of proposed projects subject to decisions by a competent government authority and likely to cause significant adverse transboundary effects, including a full evaluation of comments provided by other Parties and persons of other Parties;
Art.10.7.b (b) notification, provision of relevant information and consultation between Parties with respect to such projects; and
Art.10.7.c (c) mitigation of the potential adverse effects of such projects.
Art.10.8 8. The Council shall encourage the establishment by each Party of appropriate administrative procedures pursuant to its environmental laws to permit another Party to seek the reduction, elimination or mitigation of transboundary pollution on a reciprocal basis.
Art.10.9 9. The Council shall consider and, as appropriate, develop recommendations on the provision by a Party, on a reciprocal basis, of access to and rights and remedies before its courts and administrative agencies for persons in another Party's territory who have suffered or are likely to suffer damage or injury caused by pollution originating in its territory as if the damage or injury were suffered in its territory.
Sect.B Section B: The Secretariat
Art.14 Article 14: Submissions on Enforcement Matters
Art.14.1 1. The Secretariat may consider a submission from any non-governmental organization or person asserting that a Party is failing to effectively enforce its environmental law, if the Secretariat finds that the submission:
Art.14.1.a (a) is in writing in a language designated by that Party in a notification to the Secretariat;
Art.14.1.b (b) clearly identifies the person or organization making the submission;
Art.14.1.c (c) provides sufficient information to allow the Secretariat to review the submission, including any documentary evidence on which the submission may be based;
Art.14.1.d (d) appears to be aimed at promoting enforcement rather than at harassing industry;
Art.14.1.e (e) indicates that the matter has been communicated in writing to the relevant authorities of the Party and indicates the Party's response, if any; and
Art.14.1.f (f) is filed by a person or organization residing or established in the territory of a Party.
Art.14.2 2. Where the Secretariat determines that a submission meets the criteria set out in paragraph 1, the Secretariat shall determine whether the submission merits requesting a response from the Party. In deciding whether to request a response, the Secretariat shall be guided by whether:
Art.14.2.a (a) the submission alleges harm to the person or organization making the submission;
Art.14.2.b (b) the submission, alone or in combination with other submissions, raises matters whose further study in this process would advance the goals of this Agreement;
Art.14.2.c (c) private remedies available under the Party's law have been pursued; and
Art.14.2.d (d) the submission is drawn exclusively from mass media reports.
Art.14.2.ex Where the Secretariat makes such a request, it shall forward to the Party a copy of the submission and any supporting information provided with the submission.
Art.14.3 3. The Party shall advise the Secretariat within 30 days or, in exceptional circumstances and on notification to the Secretariat, within 60 days of delivery of the request:
Art.14.3.a (a) whether the matter is the subject of a pending judicial or administrative proceeding, in which case the Secretariat shall proceed no further; and
Art.14.3.b (b) of any other information that the Party wishes to submit, such as
Art.14.3.b.i i) whether the matter was previously the subject of a judicial or administrative proceeding, and
Art.14.3.b.ii ii) whether private remedies in connection with the matter are available to the person or organization making the submission and whether they have been pursued.
Art.22 Article 22: Consultations
Art.22.1 1. Any Party may request in writing consultations with any other Party regarding whether there has been a persistent pattern of failure by that other Party to effectively enforce its environmental law.
Art.22.2 2. The requesting Party shall deliver the request to the other Parties and to the Secretariat.
Art.22.3 3. Unless the Council otherwise provides in its rules and procedures established under Article 9(2), a third Party that considers it has a substantial interest in the matter shall be entitled to participate in the consultations on delivery of written notice to the other Parties and to the Secretariat.
Art.22.4 4. The consulting Parties shall make every attempt to arrive at a mutually satisfactory resolution of the matter through consultations under this Article.
Art.23 Article 23: Initiation of Procedures
Art.23.1 1. If the consulting Parties fail to resolve the matter pursuant to Article 22 within 60 days of delivery of a request for consultations, or such other period as the consulting Parties may agree, any such Party may request in writing a special session of the Council.
Art.23.2 2. The requesting Party shall state in the request the matter complained of and shall deliver the request to the other Parties and to the Secretariat.
Art.23.3 3. Unless it decides otherwise, the Council shall convene within 20 days of delivery of the request and shall endeavor to resolve the dispute promptly.
Art.23.4 4. The Council may:
Art.23.4.a (a) call on such technical advisers or create such working groups or expert groups as it deems necessary,
Art.23.4.b (b) have recourse to good offices, conciliation, mediation or such other dispute resolution procedures, or
Art.23.4.c (c) make recommendations, as may assist the consulting Parties to reach a mutually satisfactory resolution of the dispute. Any such recommendations shall be made public if the Council, by a two-thirds vote, so decides.
Art.23.5 5. Where the Council decides that a matter is more properly covered by another agreement or arrangement to which the consulting Parties are party, it shall refer the matter to those Parties for appropriate action in accordance with such other agreement or arrangement.
Art.24 Article 24: Request for an Arbitral Panel
Art.24.1 1. If the matter has not been resolved within 60 days after the Council has convened pursuant to Article 23, the Council shall, on the written request of any consulting Party and by a two-thirds vote, convene an arbitral panel to consider the matter where the alleged persistent pattern of failure by the Party complained against to effectively enforce its environmental law relates to a situation involving workplaces, firms, companies or sectors that produce goods or provide services:
Art.24.1.a (a) traded between the territories of the Parties; or
Art.24.1.b (b) that compete, in the territory of the Party complained against, with goods or services produced or provided by persons of another Party.
Art.24.2 2. A third Party that considers it has a substantial interest in the matter shall be entitled to join as a complaining Party on delivery of written notice of its intention to participate to the disputing Parties and the Secretariat. The notice shall be delivered at the earliest possible time, and in any event no later than seven days after the date of the vote of the Council to convene a panel.
Art.24.3 3. Unless otherwise agreed by the disputing Parties, the panel shall be established and perform its functions in a manner consistent with the provisions of this Part.
Art.27 Article 27: Panel Selection
Art.27.1 1. Where there are two disputing Parties, the following procedures shall apply:
Art.27.1.a (a) The panel shall comprise five members.
Art.27.1.b (b) The disputing Parties shall endeavor to agree on the chair of the panel within 15 days after the Council votes to convene the panel. If the disputing Parties are unable to agree on the chair within this period, the disputing Party chosen by lot shall select within five days a chair who is not a citizen of that Party.
Art.27.1.c (c) Within 15 days of selection of the chair, each disputing Party shall select two panelists who are citizens of the other disputing Party.
Art.27.1.d (d) If a disputing Party fails to select its panelists within such period, such panelists shall be selected by lot from among the roster members who are citizens of the other disputing Party.
Art.27.2 2. Where there are more than two disputing Parties, the following procedures shall apply:
Art.27.2.a (a) The panel shall comprise five members.
Art.27.2.b (b) The disputing Parties shall endeavor to agree on the chair of the panel within 15 days after the Council votes to convene the panel. If the disputing Parties are unable to agree on the chair within this period, the Party or Parties on the side of the dispute chosen by lot shall select within 10 days a chair who is not a citizen of such Party or Parties.
Art.27.2.c (c) Within 30 days of selection of the chair, the Party complained against shall select two panelists, one of whom is a citizen of a complaining Party, and the other of whom is a citizen of another complaining Party. The complaining Parties shall select two panelists who are citizens of the Party complained against.
Art.27.2.d (d) If any disputing Party fails to select a panelist within such a period, such panelist shall be selected by lot in accordance with the citizenship criteria of subparagraph (c).
Art.27.3 3. Panelists shall normally be selected from the roster. Any disputing Party may exercise a peremptory challenge against any individual not on the roster who is proposed as a panelist by a disputing Party within 30 days after the individual has been proposed.
Art.27.4 4. If a disputing Party believes that a panelist is in violation of the code of conduct, the disputing Parties shall consult and, if they agree, the panelist shall be removed and a new panelist shall be selected in accordance with this Article.
Art.28 Article 28: Rules of Procedure
Art.28.1 1. The Council shall establish Model Rules of Procedure. The procedures shall provide:
Art.28.1.a (a) a right to at least one hearing before the panel;
Art.28.1.b (b) the opportunity to make initial and rebuttal written submissions; and
Art.28.1.c (c) that no panel may disclose which panelists are associated with majority or minority opinions.
Art.28.2 2. Unless the disputing Parties otherwise agree, panels convened under this Part shall be established and conduct their proceedings in accordance with the Model Rules of Procedure.
Art.28.3 3. Unless the disputing Parties otherwise agree within 20 days after the Council votes to convene the panel, the terms of reference shall be:
Art.28.3.ax "To examine, in light of the relevant provisions of the Agreement, including those contained in Part Five, whether there has been a persistent pattern of failure by the Party complained against to effectively enforce its environmental law, and to make findings, determinations and recommendations in accordance with Article 31(2)."
Art.29 Article 29: Third Party Participation
Art.29.1x A party that is not a disputing Party, on delivery of a written notice to the disputing Parties and to the Secretariat, shall be entitled to attend all hearings, to make written and oral submissions to the panel and to receive written submissions of the disputing Parties.
Art.30 Article 30: Role of Experts
Art.30.1x On request of a disputing Party, or on its own initiative, the panel may seek information and technical advice from any person or body that it deems appropriate, provided that the disputing Parties so agree and subject to such terms and conditions as such Parties may agree.
Art.31 Article 31: Initial Report
Art.31.1 1. Unless the disputing Parties otherwise agree, the panel shall base its report on the submissions and arguments of the Parties and on any information before it pursuant to Article 30.
Art.31.2 2. Unless the disputing Parties otherwise agree, the panel shall, within 180 days after the last panelist is selected, present to the disputing Parties an initial report containing:
Art.31.2.a (a) findings of fact;
Art.31.2.b (b) its determination as to whether there has been a persistent pattern of failure by the Party complained against to effectively enforce its environmental law, or any other determination requested in the terms of reference; and
Art.31.2.c (c) in the event the panel makes an affirmative determination under subparagraph (b), its recommendations, if any, for the resolution of the dispute, which normally shall be that the Party complained against adopt and implement an action plan sufficient to remedy the pattern of non-enforcement.
Art.31.3 3. Panelists may furnish separate opinions on matters not unanimously agreed.
Art.31.4 4. A disputing party may submit written comments to the panel on its initial report within 30 days of presentation of the report.
Art.31.5 5. In such an event, and after considering such written comments, the panel, on its own initiative or on the request of any disputing Party, may:
Art.31.5.a (a) request the views of any participating Party;
Art.31.5.b (b) reconsider its report; and
Art.31.5.c (c) make any further examination that it considers appropriate.
Art.32 Article 32: Final Report
Art.32.1 1. The panel shall present to the disputing Parties a final report, including any separate opinions on matters not unanimously agreed, within 60 days of presentation of the initial report, unless the disputing Parties otherwise agree.
Art.32.2 2. The disputing Parties shall transmit to the Council the final report of the panel, as well as any written views that a disputing Party desires to be appended, on a confidential basis within 15 days after it is presented to them.
Art.32.3 3. The final report of the panel shall be published five days after it is transmitted to the Council.
Art.33 Article 33: Implementation of Final Report
Art.33.1x If, in its final report, a panel determines that there has been a persistent pattern of failure by the Party complained against to effectively enforce its environmental law, the disputing Parties may agree on a mutually satisfactory action plan, which normally shall conform with the determinations and recommendations of the panel. The disputing Parties shall promptly notify the Secretariat and the Council of any agreed resolution of the dispute.
Art.34 Article 34: Review of Implementation
Art.34.1 1. If, in its final report, a panel determines that there has been a persistent pattern of failure by the Party complained against to effectively enforce its environmental law, and:
Art.34.1.a (a) the disputing Parties have not agreed on an action plan under Article 33 within 60 days of the date of the final report, or
Art.34.1.b (b) the disputing Parties cannot agree on whether the Party complained against is fully implementing
Art.34.1.b.i (i) an action plan agreed under Article 33,
Art.34.1.b.ii (ii)an action plan deemed to have been established by a panel under paragraph 2, or
Art.34.1.b.iii (iii) an action plan approved or established by a panel under paragraph 4,
Art.34.1.b.ivx any disputing Party may request that the panel be reconvened. The requesting Party shall deliver the request in writing to the other Parties and to the Secretariat. The Council shall reconvene the panel on delivery of the request to the Secretariat.
Art.34.2 2. No Party may make a request under paragraph 1(a) earlier than 60 days, or later than 120 days, after the date of the final report. If the disputing Parties have not agreed to an action plan and if no request was made under paragraph l(a), the last action plan, if any, submitted by the Party complained against to the complaining Party or Parties within 60 days of the date of the final report, or such other period as the disputing Parties may agree, shall be deemed to have been established by the panel 120 days after the date of the final report.
Art.34.3 3. A request under paragraph 1(b) may be made no earlier than 180 days after an action plan has been:
Art.34.3.a (a) agreed under Article 33;
Art.34.3.b (b) deemed to have been established by a panel under paragraph 2; or
Art.34.3.c (c) approved or established by a panel under paragraph 4;
Art.34.3.c.ix and only during the term of any such action plan.
Art.34.4 4. Where a panel has been reconvened under paragraph 1(a), it:
Art.34.4.a (a) shall determine whether any action plan proposed by the Party complained against is sufficient to remedy the pattern of non-enforcement and
Art.34.4.a.i (i) if so, shall approve the plan, or
Art.34.4.a.ii (ii)if not, shall establish such a plan consistent with the law of the Party complained against, and
Art.34.4.b (b) may, where warranted, impose a monetary enforcement assessment in accordance with Annex 34,
Art.34.4.b.ix within 90 days after the panel has been reconvened or such other period as the disputing Parties may agree.
Art.34.5 5. Where a panel has been reconvened under paragraph 1(b), it shall determine either that:
Art.34.5.a (a) the Party complained against is fully implementing the action plan, in which case the panel may not impose a monetary enforcement assessment, or
Art.34.5.b (b) the Party complained against is not fully implementing the action plan, in which case the panel shall impose a monetary enforcement assessment in accordance with Annex 34,
Art.34.5.b.ix within 60 days after it has been reconvened or such other period as the disputing Parties may agree.
Art.34.6 6. A panel reconvened under this Article shall provide that the Party complained against shall fully implement any action plan referred to in paragraph 4(a)(ii) or 5(b), and pay any monetary enforcement assessment imposed under paragraph 4(b) or 5(b), and any such provision shall be final.
Art.35 Article 35: Further Proceeding
Art.35.1x A complaining Party may, at any time beginning 180 days after a panel determination under Article 34(5)(b), request in writing that a panel be reconvened to determine whether the Party complained against is fully implementing the action plan. On delivery of the request to the other Parties and the Secretariat, the Council shall reconvene the panel. The panel shall make the determination within 60 days after it has been reconvened or such other period as the disputing Parties may agree.
Art.36 Article 36: Suspension of Benefits
Art.36.1 1. Subject to Annex 36A, where a Party fails to pay a monetary enforcement assessment within 180 days after it is imposed by a panel:
Art.36.1.a (a) under Article 34(4)(b), or
Art.36.1.b (b) under Article 34(5)(b), except where benefits may be suspended under paragraph 2(a),
Art.36.1.b.ix any complaining Party or Parties may suspend, in accordance with Annex 36B, the application to the Party complained against of NAFTA benefits in an amount no greater than that sufficient to collect the monetary enforcement assessment.
Art.36.2 2. Subject to Annex 36A, where a panel has made a determination under Article 34(5)(b) and the panel:
Art.36.2.a (a) has previously imposed a monetary enforcement assessment under Article 34 (4)(b) or established an action plan under Article 34(4)(a)(ii); or
Art.36.2.b (b) has subsequently determined under Article 35 that a Party is not fully implementing an action plan;
Art.36.2.b.ix the complaining Party or Parties may, in accordance with Annex 36B, suspend annually the application to the Party complained against of NAFTA benefits in an amount no greater than the monetary enforcement assessment imposed by the panel under Article 34(5)(b).
Art.36.3 3. Where more than one complaining Party suspends benefits under paragraph 1 or 2, the combined suspension shall be no greater than the amount of the monetary enforcement assessment.
Art.36.4 4. Where a Party has suspended benefits under paragraph 1 or 2, the Council shall, on the delivery of a written request by the Party complained against to the other Parties and the Secretariat, reconvene the panel to determine whether the monetary enforcement assessment has been paid or collected, or whether the Party complained against is fully implementing the action plan, as the case may be. The panel shall submit its report within 45 days after it has been reconvened. If the panel determines that the assessment has been paid or collected, or that the Party complained against is fully implementing the action plan, the suspension of benefits under paragraph 1 or 2, as the case may be, shall be terminated.
Art.36.5 5. On the written request of the Party complained against, delivered to the other Parties and the Secretariat, the Council shall reconvene the panel to determine whether the suspension of benefits by the complaining Party or Parties pursuant to paragraph 1 or 2 is manifestly excessive. Within 45 days of the request, the panel shall present a report to the disputing Parties containing its determination.
Part.6 PART SIX