November 30, 2010

New Pew Center Report on Strengthening Measurement, Reporting and Verification

Filed under: climate — inece @ 4:37 pm

A central issue in negotiations under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is how best to provide for the measurement, reporting and verification (MRV) of parties’ mitigation actions and support. This brief describes and evaluates existing requirements under the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol, and outlines recommendations for building on these mechanisms to establish a more robust MRV system.

This enhanced system should include: significantly strengthening the existing system of reporting and expert review, and establishing a new mechanism for peer review of mitigation actions. Peer review and expert review would together constitute the international “consultations” and “analysis” envisioned in the Copenhagen Accord.

Read the full report at Strengthening MRV: Measurement, Reporting and Verification.

November 29, 2010

INECE to Host Side Event on Strengthening Compliance to Protect Ecosystem Services at the UN Climate Conference

Filed under: climate, Forests, INECE Secretariat — inece @ 11:30 pm

On 7 December 2010, INECE will host a side event on Networks to Assure Compliance with Ecosystem Climate Protection Policies and Measures during the UN Climate Change Conference (COP 16).

During the session, government stakeholders including from Norway, Australia, Brazil, the Netherlands, Mexico, and Japan will participate in a facilitated discussion on strengthening compliance with laws and policies designed to protect, sequester, and maintain carbon in forests, wetlands, and farmland.  Trends toward market-based regulatory mechanisms to drive and deliver carbon benefits from these ecosystems require new approaches and tools for law enforcement and capacity building.

Event Information:

Networks to Assure Compliance with Ecosystem Climate Protection Policies and Measures
Tuesday, 7 December 2010 from 15:00 -16.30
Moon Palace Hotel
Tequila Building
In the The Bellona Room (Next to the Norwegian Delegation’s Room on the 1st Floor)
Cancún, Mexico, during the UN Climate Conference

The event is by invitation only. Please contact inece@inece.org for more information on participation.

See http://www.inece.org/climate/ for more information on INECE’s Climate Compliance work.

November 22, 2010

INECE Seaport Network to Convene Workshop in Cambodia on Controlling Illegal Hazardous Waste Trade

Filed under: Asia, INECE Secretariat, seaports — Tags: — inece @ 5:43 pm

On November 29, 2010, INECE’s Seaport Environmental Security Network (SESN) will convene its Second Workshop on Combating the Illegal Hazardous Waste Trade Through Seaports in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

Sihanoukville Seaport in Cambodia. Photo credit Kelvin Cheong.

The workshop will be a one-day event focused on sharing enforcement strategies and developing cooperation tools to detect and prevent the illegal trade in hazardous waste.

The workshop will include sessions on:

  • Designing action-based enforcement cooperation strategies that build capacity of seaport authorities and that signal deterrence to the regulated community.
  • Using intelligence-led approaches to target enforcement actions and improve detection efficiency.
  • Negotiating interministerial agreements to improve cooperation among environment, trade, customs, and other agencies responsible for regulating the transboundary movement of hazardous wastes.
  • Assessing needs and challenges specific to the Asia region.

The INECE SESN Workshop immediately precedes a workshop of the Asian Network for Prevention of Illegal Transboundary Movement of Hazardous Wastes, sponsored by the Cambodian Ministry of Environment, the Japanese Ministry of the Environment, and the Basel Convention Regional Center for South-East Asia. The Asian Network workshop aims at enhancing enforcement capacity of the member countries for the implementation of the Basel Convention and facilitating the exchange and dissemination of information for the prevention of illegal transboundary movement of hazardous wastes.

The SESN is an operational network of professionals involved in the inspection and monitoring of transboundary movements of hazardous waste through seaports. For more information about the Seaport Environmental Security Network, see http://www.inece.org/seaport/ or contact Danielle Grabiel at the INECE Secretariat at dgrabiel at inece.org or +1-202-338-1300.

November 16, 2010

Compliance is Essential for Environmental Impact Assessment Success

Filed under: climate, INECE Secretariat — inece @ 8:44 pm

INECE Managing Director Ken Markowitz delivered remarks today at the World Bank during the Special Symposium on Climate Change and Impact Assessment. The Symposium, hosted by International Association for Impact Assessment, engaged experts on discussions of the effects of climate change on the impact of projects and the ways that impact assessment can be used for understanding risk and responding to climate change.

Speaking on a panel on “National Governments: Climate Change and EIA – Beyond North America,” Mr. Markowitz explored the risks of failing to adequately assure compliance with EIA requirements. A number of countries have developed guidance for incorporating climate change considerations in environmental assessment at the project level. Mr. Markowitz cautioned that “without compliance with EIA requirements and enforcement of EIA terms, the impact and value of these  costly assessments will be greatly minimized.” He recognized that this is as applicable to climate change, in terms of both project and programmatic considerations, as well as the development of worst case scenarios, as it is to traditional EIA topics like land-use planning and transportation.

Background information on climate change and impact assessment are available at on the IAIA web site.

Significant Outcomes from the Nagoya Biodiversity Conference

Filed under: biodiversity, climate, INECE Secretariat — inece @ 2:33 pm

On 29 October 2010, some 18,000 participants representing the 193 Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and their partners closed the Nagoya Biodiversity Summit by adopting historic decisions that will permit the community of nations to meet the unprecedented challenges of the continued loss of biodiversity compounded by climate change. Governments agreed on a package of measures that will ensure that the ecosystems of the planet will continue to sustain human well-being into the future.

The meeting achieved its three inter-linked goals: adoption of a new ten year Strategic Plan to guide international and national efforts to save biodiversity through enhanced action to meet the objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity, a resource mobilization strategy that provides the way forward to a substantial increase to current levels of official development assistance in support of biodiversity; and a new international protocol on access to and sharing of the benefits from the use of the genetic resources of the planet. (excerpted from the CBD press release).

Following the conclusion of the COP, INECE EPC member Kunihiko Shimada, Principal International Negotiator to Japan’s Ministry of the Environment, reflected that “compliance issues were identified as one of the major issues within the CBD negotiations, particularly those related to the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing. Although the Protocol itself was agreed by consensus among the Parties, the details need to be formulated under the legal working group. The matters related to compliance were one of the crunchy issues within the negotiations that the Parties spend days and hours in order to come to an agreement. As the Shadow President who served as the Executive Assistant to the COP10 President, I recognized that there would be many ways for the INECE to contribute the CBD community to help form an effective and credible compliance system within the Convention on Biological Diversity and its Protocol on ABS.”

A recent UNEP publication, Issues of Compliance: Considerations for the International Regime on Access and Benefit Sharing [pdf], provides useful background on MEA compliance issues and assess the experience of different MEAs in dealing with compliance.

November 15, 2010

Joint WCO/UNEP Operation Nets Large Haul of Ozone Depleting Substances

Filed under: Africa, Asia, Chemicals & Waste, climate, Environmental Crime, Europe, seaports, UN System — Tags: — inece @ 9:27 pm

Click the logos above for the Project Sky-hole Patching Information Brochure (pdf)

A joint global Customs enforcement operation initiated by the World Customs Organization and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and code-named “Sky-hole Patching II” led to the confiscation of more than 7,500 cylinders of CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons), HCFCs (hydrochlorofluorocarbons), and other ozone depleting substances.

Totalling over 108 tonnes of ozone depleting substances (ODS) and 668 pieces of equipment containing ODS, each of these man-made chemicals is linked to the rapid depletion of the ozone layer and all have been either banned or subject to strict controls under the terms of the Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer.

“This global operation by Customs in partnership with the WCO and UNEP which hauled in spectacular quantities of illegal ODS clearly demonstrates the success of this tripartite alliance against this dangerous trade and the organized criminal gangs who profit from it,” said Kunio Mikuriya, Secretary General of the WCO. “We cannot allow goods that threaten the health and safety of world citizens, which contribute to global warming and inevitably to negative climate change, and which damage the environment – perhaps more far-reaching than what is estimated – to circulate the globe without taking serious action,” Mikuriya added. “I can only commend all those who took part in this project and urge Customs and their partners to continue their enforcement efforts to secure our borders from all forms of illegal and illicit trade,” concluded the Secretary General.

(more…)

November 12, 2010

World’s police at INTERPOL General Assembly rally against environmental crime

Filed under: Uncategorized — inece @ 10:21 pm

From Interpol:

DOHA, Qatar – Senior police representatives from agencies worldwide attending INTERPOL’s 79th General Assembly have unanimously backed a resolution encouraging greater global policing efforts against environmental crime through INTERPOL’s Environmental Crime Programme.

The resolution called upon the national law enforcement authorities of INTERPOL’s 188 member countries to recognize that ‘environmental crime is not restricted by borders and involves organized crime networks which engage in other crime types, including murder, corruption, fraud and theft’. It noted that there is a vital need for a global response and that INTERPOL should play a leading role in supporting national and international enforcement against environmental crime, which encompasses activities ranging from illegal trade in wildlife, timber and marine species, to illegal transborder movements of hazardous waste, and the illicit exploitation of natural resources.

Read the full press release at Interpol’s web site or on the CITES Secretariat web site.  See also the Statement by John Scanlon, Secretary-General, CITES to the 79th Interpol General Assembly.

November 11, 2010

INECE Announces Call for Papers for the 9th International Conference

Filed under: 9th Conference, INECE Secretariat — inece @ 9:19 pm

The International Network for Environmental Compliance and Enforcement (INECE) is pleased to announce that the 9th International Conference on Environmental Compliance and Enforcement will be held on 20-24 June 2011 in British Columbia, Canada.

The theme of the 9th Conference is “Enforcement Cooperation for Better Environmental Governance.” Panels and workshops throughout the Conference will demonstrate how enforcement cooperation at all levels is essential for achieving sustainable development objectives.

The 9th Conference will feature distinguished keynote speakers and action-oriented workshops and will include a day for field visits to sites of innovative environmental enforcement initiatives in British Columbia. It will be proceeded by two days dedicated to training and network building events.

All interested persons are invited to submit original papers for distribution prior to the Conference, relevant to the topics of the seven thematic tracks:

  • Compliance and Enforcement Strategies.
  • Enforcement Challenges Across Borders.
  • Promoting Compliance with Climate-Related Requirements.
  • Improving Implementation of Environmental Legislation
  • Non-Traditional Approaches.
  • Institutional Issues.
  • Special Topics in Network Development.

A selection of these articles will be published in the post-Conference Proceedings, along with the Conference outcomes.

The deadline for articles is 14 February 2011. INECE requests that authors send a short message to inece@inece.org noting their intention to submit a paper. Please access the Call for Papers (pdf) for detailed paper guidelines.

Please note that conference participation is by invitation only; nominations will be made by regional focal points.

Please send any questions to the INECE Secretariat at inece@inece.org.

November 10, 2010

Green Court Proposed in Ecuador

Filed under: Judges and Prosecutors, marine, South America — Tags: — inece @ 2:41 pm

From Sea Shepard:
Satellite Image of the Galápagos Islands

In Quito, on October 26, 2010, a hearing was held at the Judiciary Council of Ecuador, to justify the need to create the first specialized judiciary on rights to nature in Ecuador and the world.

The hearing was part of a process led by institutions and conservation organizations based in the Galapagos, which calls for transformation of environmental justice in this national protected area and world natural heritage, by means of judicial specialization.

Galapagos requires a specialized judiciary to ensure access to justice according to the Ecuadorian constitutional provisions on the protection of natural heritage and the rights of nature.

In 2008, Ecuador became the first country to recognize nature as a subject of rights. The Constitution of the Republic of Ecuador recognizes the rights of nature to be respected and restored. In 2009, the Organic Code of the Judicial Function was created, which specifically provides for the creation of special judiciaries to address claims on violation of the rights of nature. The Law authorizes its establishment by the Consejo de la Judicatura, the country’s Judicial Council.

For more information, see A Major Step Towards the Creation of the First Judiciary on the Rights of Nature in the World.

November 8, 2010

INECE to Deliver Presentation at Asian Compliance and Enforcement Network Regional Forum

Filed under: Asia, INECE Secretariat — inece @ 9:58 pm

On 10-12 November 2010, the Ministry of Environment of Japan (MOE) in partnership with the Asian Environmental Compliance and Enforcement Network (AECEN), will convene the 2010 AECEN Regional Forum in Kyoto, Japan.

During the Forum, INECE Managing Director Ken Markowitz will deliver a presentation on Global Replication by Linking Regional Networks, to describe how cooperation and communications among regional environmental compliance and enforcement networks can help identify and promote innovative programming.

AECEN, a regional practitioner network dedicated to sharing improved policies and practices on compliance and enforcement in Asia, organizes a Regional Forum annually to report on activity results, conduct regional training, share and ensure effective transfer of knowledge and experience among members, and plan new activities.

The annual forum also affords members an opportunity to collaborate and learn from other international enforcement networks and development partners.

For more information, see http://www.aecen.org.

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