UNEP-IEMP Builds Ecosystem Management Capacity in Greater Mekong Subregion
Photo by IISD/ENB | Kiara Worth
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The UN Environment Programme-International Ecosystem Management Partnership (UNEP-IEMP) held a high-level workshop to mark the closing of an ecosystem management capacity building project in the Greater Mekong Subregion.

The workshop reflected on the project’s achievements and opportunities for future cooperation, including on implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

On future work, participants identified four priority areas under the cooperation framework: providing environmental solutions to eradicate poverty; reducing water and air pollution; promoting climate-smart agriculture (CSA); and putting leadership as the key in cooperation.

October 2016: The UN Environment Programme-International Ecosystem Management Partnership (UNEP-IEMP) held a high-level workshop to mark the closing of an ecosystem management capacity building project in the Greater Mekong Subregion. The workshop reflected on the project’s achievements and opportunities for future cooperation, including on implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The High-level Workshop on Ecosystem Management Capacity Building for Lancang-Mekong Cooperation took place from 29-30 September in Beijing, China. The workshop took stock of the project’s achievements from March 2015 to September 2016, including capacity building, awareness raising efforts and publications.

In an opening address, Deputy Director-General, Ministry of Environmental Protection, China, Zhou Guomei, highlighted opportunities for the project’s cooperation mechanism to further and deepen China’s cooperation with Cambodia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR), Myanmar, Viet Nam and Thailand on implementation of the SDGs. In a keynote speech, UNEP-IEMP Project Manager Loo Min Jet, shared the project’s successes.

Participants agreed on a strategic framework for Lancang-Mekong Cooperation to strengthen ecosystem management, build capacity and mainstream ecosystem conservation at national and sub-regional levels. The framework further, inter alia: calls for Lancang-Mekong countries to strengthen cooperation through joint implementation of activities and collaborative research on ecosystem management and conservation; supports establishment of an ecosystem management platform/network for cooperation; prioritizes work on creating green development incentives for the private sector and banking sector; assesses country capacity to implement the SDGs; extends protected area networks; and strengthens a network of biodiversity experts, among other areas.

On future work, participants identified four priority areas under the cooperation framework. They include providing environmental solutions to eradicate poverty; reducing water and air pollution; promoting climate-smart agriculture (CSA); and putting leadership as the key in cooperation. Participants also recognized the importance of healthy and productive ecosystems for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The UNEP-China Trust Fund provided financial support for the project. SDG 15 (Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss) includes targets related to ecosystem management. [UNEP-IEMP Website] [UNEP-IEMP Press Release] [IISD RS Sources]


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