UNEP Prepares Background Documents for IEG Discussion at GC26/GMEF
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A number of documents that have been issued ahead of the 26th Session of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum (UNEP GC26/GMEF) provide background information for the agenda item on international environmental governance (IEG).

January 2011: A number of documents that have been issued ahead of the 26th Session of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum (UNEP GC26/GMEF), which will take place in Nairobi, Kenya, from 21-24 February 2011, provide background information for the agenda item on international environmental governance (IEG).

The documents include a discussion paper presented by the Executive Director of UNEP (UNEP/GC.26/17/Add.2) titled “Background paper for the ministerial consultations: International environmental governance,” which describes the key messages and questions for the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD, or Rio+20) and highlights proposals that could lead to a stronger framework, suggesting that an analysis of the legal implications and the cost benefits of each of the proposals could be useful for understanding where the gaps lie and what changes are needed. The documents also include a note by the Executive Director of UNEP (UNEP/GC.26/18) titled “Outcome of the work of the Consultative Group of Ministers or High-Level Representatives on International Environmental Governance,” which indicates the Consultative Group expressed the view that the Governing Council should further consider how to secure political momentum and efficient follow-up of the IEG process.

A number of other information and working documents include references to IEG. A note by the Executive Director of UNEP (UNEP/GC.26/INF/5), titled “Statements and recommendations from major groups and stakeholders to the Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum at its twenty-sixth session,” includes a series of recommendations, including that IEG consultations should involve more public participation at all levels with concrete input from the African Major Groups and Stakeholders. A report to the Executive Director of UNEP (UNEP/GC.26/4), titled “State of the environment and contribution of the United Nations Environment Programme to meeting substantive environmental challenges,” includes draft decisions in which the Governing Council is requesting the Executive Director to develop the global environmental information network in the IEG initiative as an institutional support mechanism to underpin the development of the UNEP-live platform as also reflected in the addendum to the report (UNEP/GC.26/4/Add.1) and highlights the UNEP Year Book 2010, which notes the progress made in IEG reform.

The note of the Executive Director of UNEP (UNEP/GC.26/INF/21) titled “Evolution of the relationship between the United Nations Environment Programme and the multilateral environmental agreements that it administers,” discusses the distribution of managerial and administrative authority in respect of multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) administered by UNEP. It addresses the expanded authority and autonomy of MEAs, and implications for UNEP, and includes recommendations on clarifying and strengthening accountability in the relationship between UNEP and the MEAs it administers.

The report of the Executive Director of UNEP (UNEP/GC.26/13) titled “Proposed biennial programme of work and budget for 2012–2013” notes that the Governing Council, in its decision SS.VII/1 on IEG, reiterated the need for a strengthened UNEP with a stronger science base. In the report of the Executive Director of UNEP (UNEP/GC.26/16) titled “Enhancing cooperation and coordination within the chemicals and wastes cluster,” the draft decision highlights the recognition that challenges posed by chemicals form part of the challenges posed to IEG. [Working Documents] [Information Documents]

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