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UNEP GPA 2nd Intergovernmental Review
of the Global Programme of Action for the Protection
of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities

Beijing | 16-20 October 2006
United Nations
 

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GPA IGR-2 Opens in Beijing

The Second Intergovernmental Review (IGR-2) Meeting of the Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-based Activities (GPA) opened on 16 October in Beijing, China. In the morning, delegates convened in plenary to hear opening remarks, address organizational matters and hold a panel on the way forward with National Programmes of Action (NPAs). In the afternoon, delegates participated in parallel breakout groups to address national implementation in action. At lunchtime and in the evening, a working group met to draft the Beijing Declaration.

Above: Veerle Vandeweerd, UNEP/GPA Coordinator, and Zhou Shengxian, Minister, State Environmental Protection Administration, China, and IGR-2 Chairman, unveiled the conference poster after opening remarks.


Monday, 16 October
Opening Plenary


Zhou Shengxian, Minister, State Environmental Protection Administration, China, and IGR-2 Chair, noted that marine and coastal regions have taken a prominent role in his country's development.

Khalid Malik, UN Resident Coordinator in China, emphasized the GPA's role in linking environment and development objectives and addressing challenges at the national and local levels.

Veerle Vandeweerd, Coordinator, UNEP/GPA Coordination Office, encouraged delegates to celebrate the GPA's achievements and share experiences.
Panel: The Way Forward with National Programmes of Action


IGR-2 Vice-Chair Lucia Ana Varga, Romania, chaired the panel on the way forward with NPAs.

Pradeep Kumar Rawat, India, noted that municipal waste is the single largest source of coastal pollution in his country and described a national programme to treat sewage over the next five years.

Rejoice Mabudafhasi, South Africa, described national efforts to implement the GPA and the JPOI, including: drafting new legislation on buffer zones to protect coastal areas; formalizing a national operational policy on wastewater disposal; and banning off-road vehicle use in certain coastal areas.

Conrad Lautenbacher, United States, highlighted national and regional achievements since IGR-1, including the adoption of a national ocean action plan based on ecosystem approaches.

Ian Matheson, Canada, asked panelists to elaborate on approaches to coordinate action, citing risk-based management as an example.

David Osborne, Australia, asked panelists to address ways to accommodate differing community values in setting targets.
Breakout Groups: The Way Forward with NPAs

Chaired by Dagmara Berbalk, Germany, with Hamidreza Ghaffarzadeh, Caspian Sea Regional Seas Programme, as rapporteur, the breakout group on mainstreaming the GPA into national development planning discussed: environmental impacts of ship breaking; conflicts of interest between different sectors; the role of private sector and overseas countries' participation; empowerment of local communities; involvement of non-coastal source countries in GPA discussions; poverty as a root cause of land-based sources of pollution; loans versus grants financing; and the ecosystem approach as a key aspect of an integrated approach.

Chaired by Elizabeth Thompson, Barbados, with Ardi Stoios-Braken, the Netherlands, as rapporteur, the breakout group on strengthening legislative and institutional frameworks discussed: national political endorsement; ways of improving coordination and regulatory tools; incentives; a holistic approach; strategies for ensuring compliance; risk analysis; use of monitoring systems; ways of involving civil society and bringing together stakeholders in formulating NPAs; and the need for qualified manpower and financial resources.

Chaired by Magnús Jóhannesson, Iceland, with Taha Zatari, Saudi Arabia, as rapporteur, the breakout group on financing the implementation of the GPA discussed, inter alia: revolving funds and repaying such funding; ensuring that regional banks prioritize funding for environmental projects; private sector involvement, in addition to public funding; willingness to pay when applying the polluter-pays principle; raising community awareness; the importance of national legislation and standards setting; and low-cost waste management technologies.
Beijing Declaration Working Group

A working group met during lunchtime and in the evening to begin drafting the Beijing Declaration. The Stakeholder Forum presented its views on the draft elements of the declaration at the beginning of the evening session.
Around IGR-2

John Matuszak, United States, conferred with Mara Angélica Murillo Correa, Mexico.

In the evening, China's State Environmental Protection Administration hosted a gala reception for participants.

The evening reception featured diverse forms of cultural entertainment, including traditional dance.

Related Links

UNEP Global Programme of Action
Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission
Global Forum on Oceans, Coasts and Islands
World Ocean Network
Gerald Mangone Center for Marine Policy
Stakeholder Forum - GPA

Related Coverage

3rd Global Conference on Oceans, Coasts and Islands
Global Conference on Oceans, Coasts and Islands, 2003
Global Conference on Oceans and Coasts at Rio+10, 2001
GPA IGR-1
East Asian Seas Congress 2006

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