June 28, 2011

INECE Conference Concludes With Statement Recognizing Value of Enforcement Cooperation

Filed under: 9th Conference, INECE Secretariat — inece @ 4:26 pm

The 9th International Conference on Environmental Compliance and Enforcement concluded on Friday, 24 June 2011, in Whistler, British Columbia, Canada, with the presentation of the Conference Statement recognizing the importance of  cooperation in strengthening environmental enforcement and compliance.

INECE Co-chair Gerard Wolters Concludes the 9th Conference (J. Lehane)

Cooperation among government officials to exchange information and coordinate activity across national borders and institutions creates efficiencies in combating environmental crimes and enabling green economic growth.  INECE and its regional and topical networks play a critical role in improving compliance with and enforcement and implementation of environmental law, particularly in countries with limited institutional capacity.  INECE adds value by facilitating and providing the best practices for the exchange of information and fostering collaboration and mutual learning both vertically and horizontally in the enforcement and compliance chain.

According to Mr. Gerard J. R. Wolters, Co-Chair of INECE and Inspector-General for International Cooperation at the Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment of The Netherlands,  “Every environmental policy and regulation – both at the national and international level – is as strong as its actual implementation. If compliance and enforcement of environmental requirements are lacking, the environment and health of our people fail to be protected. Collaboration between law enforcement disciplines at all levels is essential to safeguard the important values of our lives and of our planet.”

Recognizing this spirit of collaboration, Conference participants from West Africa announced the launch of a new regional environmental compliance and enforcement network. The West Africa Network initially will focus on illegal movements and disposal of electronic waste in the region.

Additionally, participants from South America announced plans to begin to build the foundation for a new regional  environmental compliance and enforcement network. The South America Network initially will  focus on harmonizing investigation and prosecution procedures and increasing understanding of comparative environmental legal systems.

The Conference also resulted in recommendations to advance the role of environmental compliance and enforcement in achieving sustainable development objectives as part of the preparatory work for the 2012 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, Rio +20. As Ken Markowitz, Managing Director of INECE, stressed, “Compliance with domestic laws and policies forms the critical foundation for achieving the objectives of our international environmental agreements to protect our climate, lands, oceans and biodiversity.”

For more information, see http://www.inece.org/conference/9/.

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