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First Forum of Ministers and Environment Authorities of Asia Pacific

19-20 May 2015 | UN Conference Centre (UNCC), Bangkok, Thailand


Highlights for Wednesday, 20 May 2015

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Daily Web CoverageAbout | 19 May | 20 May | Summary
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Delegates on second day of First Forum of Ministers and Environment Authorities of Asia Pacific

First Forum of Ministers and Environment Authorities of Asia PacificThe First Forum of Ministers and Environment Authorities continued discussions on Wednesday morning. Oyun Sanjaasuren, UN Environment Assembly (UNEA) President and Chair of the Forum, invited delegates’ views on how a regional forum of environment agencies should evolve, and Kaveh Zahedi, UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Regional Director and Representative for Asia and the Pacific, outlined UNEP’s follow-up activities implementing the decisions of UNEA-1.

Delegates identified priorities to be addressed at UNEA-2 and gave input to UNEP’s Medium-Term Strategy 2018-2021. They reviewed a Chair’s summary of the proceedings at the end of the session.

Achim Steiner, UNEP Executive Director, said the UNEA is “the best opportunity” to gain global acknowledgement of regional issues at the High-Level Political Forum (HLPF), the UN General Assembly, and the UN Security Council. Sanjaasuren said this is a “critical time, a critical generation” and noted the responsibility for those in the environmental field to be “part of the solution.” She declared the Forum closed at 1.05 pm.

Delegates then attended the inaugural Asia Environmental Enforcement Award ceremony, where organizations and individuals were recognized for their work in combating wildlife crime and the illegal trade in ozone-depleting substances (ODS), chemicals and wastes.

Two roundtables took place in the afternoon. Chief Justices and public prosecutors from the region participated in an Asia Pacific Roundtable on Environmental Rule of Law in Support to the Post-2015 Development Agenda, which discussed recent developments in the concepts and application of environmental rule of law, challenges and breakthroughs, and the fight against transboundary environmental crime in wildlife, chemicals and wastes. Meanwhile, development actors met at a UNEP Roundtable on Cooperation in the Pacific.

IISD Reporting Services, through its ENB+ Meeting Coverage, provided daily web coverage and a summary report from the 1st Forum of Ministers and Environment Authorities of Asia Pacific which may be downloaded in HTML or PDF format.


Morning Session - Discussing Recommendations for United Nations Environment Assembly


Achim Steiner, Executive Director, UNEP, converses with delegate before opening second day


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Oyun Sanjaasuren, Forum Chair

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Emeline Siale Ilolahia, Civil Society Forum of Tonga and Pacific civil society organizations


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Chung Haeseung, UNEP TUNZA North East Asia Youth Environment Network and UNEP Asia Pacific Major Groups and Stakeholders

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Masoumeh Ebtakar, Vice President and Head of Department of Environment, Islamic Republic of Iran


Kaveh Zahedi, UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Regional Director and Representative for Asia and the Pacific, delivers his presentation on the UN Environment Assembly: Implementation of resolutions and priorities for the future of Asia Pacific.


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Ghulam Mohd Malikyar, Deputy-Director General, National Environmental Protection Agency (NEPA), Afghanistan

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Rungnapar Pattanavibool, Acting Director of Office of International Cooperation on Natural Resources and Environment, Office of the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Thailand


Malek Hossein Givzad, Ambassador/Chair, Group of the Asian and Pacific States, Permanent Mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran


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Zhang Jieqing, Director, Division of International Organization & Environmental Conventions, Ministry of Environment Protection (MEP), China

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Siaosi Ofa Ki Vahafolau Sovaleni, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change & Communication (MEIDECC), Tonga


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Anura Jayatilake, Director General, South Asia Co-operative Environment Programme (SACEP)

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David Sheppard, Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP)


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Eiji Tanaka, Deputy Director, Ministry of the Environment, Japan

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Hazri Hassan, Director of International Policy, Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, Singapore


Noelene Nabulivou, Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN)


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Faamoetauloa Lealaiauloto Taito Faale Tumaalii, Minister of Natural Resources and Environment, and Frances Debra Brown, Assistant CEO Environment Coordination, Samoa

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Ugyen Tshewang, Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Forests, and Karma Tshering, Senior Programme Officer, Policy and Programming Services National Environment Commission, Bhutan


L-R: Kaveh Zahedi, UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Regional Director and Representative for Asia and the Pacific; Mona Ioane, Associate Minister, Ministry of Environment, Cook Islands; Oyun Sanjaasuren, Forum Chair; and Achim Steiner, Executive Director, UNEP


Delegations from China, Cambodia and Bhutan

Lunch Event: Asia Environment Enforcement Award Ceremony


UNEP and the Freeland Foundation presented awards recognizing fourteen individuals and organizations for work in fighting wildlife crime and the illegal trade in ozone-depleting substances (ODS), chemicals and wastes.

Organizations recognized for their work in tackling ODS, chemicals and wastes were: the Tonga Ministry of Revenue and Customs; the Nanjing Customs District in the People’s Republic of China; the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, India; and the Environmental Protection Unit, Enforcement and Security Service, Bureau of Customs, the Philippines. Individual winners in this category were: Nicomedes Petallo Enad of the Environment Protection Unit, Philippines Bureau of Customs; and Wang Liang of the World Customs Organization Regional Intelligence Liaison Office for Asia and the Pacific.

Organization award winners in fighting wildlife crime were: the Anti-Money Laundering Office of Thailand; the Maritime Group of the Philippine National Police; and the Wildlife Rapid Rescue Team of the Cambodian Forestry Administration. Individual award winners in this category were: Osmundo Dupagan Salibo and Jonathan Viernes V. Ablang of the Maritime Group of the Philippine National Police; and Do Thanh Quang of the Tan Son Nhat International Airport Customs Branch, Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam.

Organizations recognized for their work in both categories were: the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, India; the Environmental Protection Unit of the Philippines Bureau of Customs; and the World Customs Organization Regional Intelligence Liaison Office for Asia and the Pacific in Seoul, Korea.



Achim Steiner, Executive Director, UNEP


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Sulma Warne, Deputy Director, Freeland

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Shamshad Akhtar, ESCAP Executive Secretary


Göran Haag, Representative of the Government of Sweden


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Group photo of the winners for the Asia Environment Enforcement Award


Asia Pacific Roundtable on Environmental Rule of Law for Sustainable Development


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Tun Arifin Zakaria, Arifin Zakaria, Chief Justice, Malaysia

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Shamshad Akhtar, ESCAP Executive Secretary


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Simon Tay, National University of Singapore, and Chair, Singapore Institute of International Affairs

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Lal Kurukulasuriya, Director, Centre for Environmental Law Research, Training and Information, Sri Lanka


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Surendra Kumar Sinha, Chief Justice of Bangladesh

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Swatanter Kumar, Chairperson of National Green Tribunal, India


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Vainetutai Rose Toki-Brown, Deputy Speaker and Member of Parliament, Cook Islands

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Mohammad Reza Tabesh, Member of Parliament and Head of Environment Unit for Parliament, Islamic Republic of Iran


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Sulma Warne, Deputy Director, Freeland Foundation

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Kathryn Lappin, Regional Coordinator, Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD)

UNEP-Pacific Roundtable on Regional Cooperation


L-R: David Sheppard, Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP); Siaosi Ofa Ki Vahafolau Sovaleni, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change & Communication (MEIDECC), Tonga; Achim Steiner, Executive Director, UNEP; and Kaveh Zahedi, UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Regional Director and Representative for Asia and the Pacific


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Noelene Nabulivou, Development Alternatives with Women
for a New Era (DAWN)

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Faamoetauloa Lealaiauloto Taito Faale Tumaalii, Minister of Natural Resources and Environment, Samoa

Around the Venue


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Jeong Yeon-Man, Vice Minister, Ministry of Environment, Republic of Korea, greets Achim Steiner, Executive Director, UNEP.

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Jeong Yeon-Man, Vice Minister, Ministry of Environment, Republic of Korea, and Achim Steiner, Executive Director, UNEP, signing an amendment to donor agreement



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Delegates on second day of Forum

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Delegates taking selfie with a selfie stick



IISD RS Team Delia Paul, Team Leader/Writer; Sean Wu, Digital Editor; and Faye Leone, Writer

Specific funding for coverage of the First Forum of Ministers and Environment Authorities of Asia Pacific has been provided by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) - Regional Office for Asia Pacific (ROAP)
UNEP ROA

Daily Web CoverageAbout | 19 May | 20 May | Summary