Meeting on Future Stakeholder Engagement with the United Nations Environment Programme

Stakeholder Forum participated in the first meeting of the Open-ended Committee of Permanent Representatives (OECPR) to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), which was held at UNEP headquarters in Nairobi, from 24-28 March. Delegates of the week long meeting considered UNEP’s programme of work, budgets and modalities for stakeholder engagement. Final decissions on these issues will not be made until June 2014 at the United Nations Environmental Assembly (UNEA).

To support the discussions on UNEP’s stakeholder engagement policy, Major Groups and other Stakeholders held a supplementary session to discuss possible means of participation in UNEP’s forthcoming programme of work. The primary points emphasized by delegates were as follows:

  • The Major Groups and Stakeholders stressed the need for greater stakeholder engagement. This sentiment was reiterated by Government representatives, which contended that civil society plays central functions in providing expertise and scientific knowledge, informing governments of local needs and opinions,as well as identifying real world realities of policy decisions.
  • The Major Groups and Stakeholders have agreed on positions for the main bracketed points regarding stakeholder engagement, including agenda setting and access to Information, legal registration, consultation with the Committee of the Permanent Representatives, and definition and categories of stakeholders.
  • The discussion of stakeholder engagement is the means to the ends of having substantive and informed civil society input on policy issues.
  • Major Groups and Stakeholders had specific questions regarding UNEP’s role in the development of the SDGs. Major Groups and Stakeholders contend that UNEP should play a larger role in the development of the SDGs as the environment and addressing planetary boundaries are central to sustainable development.
  • Meaningful rules of procedure are important to effective stakeholder engagement. The Major Groups and Stakeholders have created self organized thematic clusters to develop common statements and positions on SDGs/Post-2015, Environment Rule of Law, SCP, and Chemicals and Waste.

For a complete summary of the Major Groups and Stakeholders meeting, click here.

For an overview of all the discussions at the OECPR, check out IISD’s coverage here.

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