GEG Project Participation in the UNEP Governing Council

Newsletter from Global Environmental Governance Project

GEG Project Participation in the UNEP Governing Council

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) will hold the 26th Regular Session of its Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum (GC/GMEF) in the United Nations Office at Nairobi from the 21st to 24th of February. The GC/GMEF will be preceded by a Global Major Groups and Stakeholders Forum (GMGSF) on 19-20 February, and the newly created Civil Society Advisory Group on International Environmental Governance will meet on February 18. The Global Environmental Governance Project will have a strong presence with three team members in Nairobi.

We will post daily updates on the Global Environmental Governance Project’s website. You can also follow the GEG Project on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

If you are in Nairobi yourself and want to connect with us at the Global Environmental Governance Project, we will have a booth with publications in the conference area. If you would like to meet with the members of the GEG team, please let us know and we will make arrangements. Just e-mail [email protected]

Civil Society Advisory Group on International Environmental Governance Contributes Analysis to UNEP Governing Council

In preparation for the GC/GMEF, the Civil Society Advisory Group on International Environmental Governance was tasked to produce a paper that would inform governments about views from civil society on IEG reform. Negusu Aklilu of Ethiopia (GEG Forum Emerging Leader) and Arthur Dahl of Switzerland co-chair the Advisory Group, which includes as members several GEG Project staff and collaborators. The Advisory Group paper has been issued as an official Information Document for the Governing Council. Download the paper from the GEG website.

The Information Document was prepared following a teleconference between major groups and stakeholders and the co-chairs of the Consultative Group of Ministers or High-Level Representatives on International Environmental Governance as well as UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner in November 2010. Mr. Steiner posed four questions in the teleconference on which he wanted input:

Why is IEG of interest to developing countries? Can we articulate clearly the outcomes relevant to developing nations?
Why is incremental reform not enough? Why do we need fundamental reform in IEG?
Why should the world believe in the United Nations, when multilateralism is criticized for not delivering results?
Why should we strengthen the Environment Programme of the United Nations, when the environment should be everyone’s responsibility and integrated into all other UN programs and agencies?
The Advisory Group added a fifth discussion point on innovative proposals for civil society involvement in international environmental governance, and for each of the questions a working group was formed. Active discussions on the questions took place in the LinkedIn group on Global Environmental Governance and were channeled to the Advisory Group. People who contributed to the paper in addition to members of the Advisory Group are listed in an announcement on the GEG website.

On February 18, the members of the Advisory Group will meet in person in Nairobi. An important agenda item is the selection of substantive themes for future work of the Advisory Group as the primary channel for civil society input to the political process for reform of international environmental governance. The Advisory Group welcomes input from the public in its aim to identify the topics to which a significant contribution can be made and that civil society has a comparative advantage to work on. If you have ideas for possible focus areas, please e-mail [email protected].

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