Highlights and images for 12 March 2019



Highlights for Tuesday, 12 March 2019

From L-R: Contact Group 2 Chair Martin Gronda, Argentina; Jorge Laguna-Celis, Secretary, Secretariat of Governing Bodies, UNEP; Patrick Luna, Brazil; and Committee of the Whole (COW) Chair Fernando Coimbra, Brazil

The fourth session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-4) continued its second day of discussion in formal contact groups and working groups established by its Committee of the Whole (COW). Early in the day, delegates reached agreement on the draft resolution on sustainable consumption and production (SCP), and on the draft decision on the proposed programme of work and budget for the 2020-2021 biennium. They announced agreement on further draft resolutions as the day progressed, and continued discussing marine litter, biodiversity, deforestation, the Global Environment Outlook (GEO) process, and arrangements for UNEA-5. Member States presented national statements in the UNEA-4 plenary in the afternoon. Many speakers paid tribute to the victims of the Ethiopian Airlines crash on Sunday. Delegates presented their national actions toward SCP, including, for example, initiatives on water resource management, sustainable forest management, and clean energy. Besides Member States, several representatives of Major Groups and other UN agencies also took the floor. David R. Boyd, UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, stated that the protection of the environment enables the fulfillment of many human rights, such as the right to drinking water and sanitation, while upholding human rights, such as the right to freedom of association, in turn helps to protect the environment. The COW convened two plenaries in the afternoon and evening to take stock of progress on negotiations. Delegates continued negotiations late into the evening.Key highlights:

  • Agreement on the draft resolution on innovative pathways to achieve SCP, which opened the way for resolving issues in other resolutions on chemicals and waste management;
  • Agreement on five other draft resolutions and one decision on: sustainable infrastructure; sustainable business; environmentally sound management of waste; sound management of chemicals and waste; promoting gender equality, the human rights and empowerment of women and girls in environmental governance; and the UNEP programme of work and budget for 2021-2022; and
  • Progress on marine litter negotiations, with delegates pressing for further talks to resolve outstanding issues late into the evening.
  • For more details on the day’s negotiations and to hear what delegates said in the corridors, see our daily Earth Negotiations Bulletin.

    IISD Reporting Services, through its Earth Negotiations Bulletin (ENB) Meeting Coverage, provided daily web coverage, daily reports, and a summary and analysis report from OECPR-4 and UNEA-4, which is available in HTML and PDF.

    Photos by IISD/ENB | Mike Muzurakis

    For photo reprint permissions, please follow instructions at our Attribution Regulations for Meeting Photo Usage Page.

    Plenary Session
    UNEA-4 President Siim Valmar Kiisler, Estonia, and Jorge Laguna-Celis, Secretary, Secretariat of Governing Bodies, UNEP
    Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, Minister, Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Ghana
    Cherdkiat Atthakor, Ambassador of Thailand to Kenya
    Sam Cheptoris, Minister, Ministry of Water and Environment, Uganda
    Sabo Ojano, Secretary of State, Ministry of Environment, Cambodia
    Goran Trivan, Minister of Environmental Protection, Serbia and Dragan Županjevac, Ambassador of Serbia to Kenya
    Peter Pitrez, Portugal, and Alexandra Carvalho, Secretary-General, Ministry of Environment, Portugal
    Paula Francisco Coelho, Minister of Environment, Angola
    Batio Bassière, Minister of Environment, Green Economy and Climate Change, Burkina Faso
    Stephen Stec, Central European University, and Yannis Derbali, UNEP
    Darleene Matunga, UNEP, with Francisca Ashietey-Odunton, Ghana
    Rebecca Freitag, Youth Delegate for Sustainable Development, protesting against single-use plastics.
    Committee of the Whole
    From L-R: Patrick Luna, Brazil; COW Chair Fernando Coimbra, Brazil; and Ulf Björnholm, UNEP
    Julia Pataki, Romania
    Saskia Salzmann and Sebastian König, Switzerland
    Delegates from Colombia
    Working Groups and Contact Groups
    Participants negotiating during a break in Working Group 2
    Kate Moore, Malawi, with Christopher Nyce, US
    Aldo Claure Banegas and Georgina Catacora-Vargas, Bolivia
    Working Group 2 Co-chair Agus Justianto, Indonesia
    Delegates from Iran during negotiations in Working Group 2
    Contact Group 2 room view
    Saskia Salzmann, Switzerland, and Sarah Da Silva, Canada
    Participants working on text changes in Contact Group 2
    Contact Group 2 Co-chair Martin Gronda, Argentina
    Sunil de Silva, Sri Lanka
    Contact Group 1 participants, celebrating the agreement of the resolution on "Innovative Pathways to Achieve Sustainable Consumption and Production"
    Marcus Davies, Canada, and Erasmo Martínez, Mexico, during a break in negotiations in Working Group 1
    Wilson Sumner, US, with Omar Ghazi Al-Attas, Saudi Arabia
    Contact Group 3 participants conferring during a break
    Around the Venue


    Non-state coalitions