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IISD Reporting Services (IISD RS) has been producing a summary report from this meeting on Monday, 28 September 2009. To download our summary please click below on the HTML or PDF icons.
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Climate-L.org
Seventieth session of the UN Economic Commission for Europe Committee on Housing and Land Management

23-25 September 2009 | Geneva, Switzerland
 
Daily web highlights+

UNECE

Highlights for Friday,
25 September 2009


The 70th session of the UNECE Committee on Housing and Land Management (CHLM) resumed today for its final deliberations.

Addressing building and construction safety, CHLM Chair Doris Andoni said institutional, legal, financial and awareness issues often hinder the correct application of building technologies, and stressed the need for the CHLM to address this issue more directly. Azerbaijan proposed that a scientific conference on building safety be held in Baku, Azerbaijan, in 2010. Delegates addressed the importance of harmonized standards for building safety and resilience, with several suggesting that all natural hazards, not just earthquakes, be taken into account in the CHLM’s work.

The meeting also discussed cross-sectoral activities, with the Secretariat highlighting, among other things, several joint projects with UN-HABITAT. One delegate stressed the importance of liaising with other relevant organizations, such as the UN International Strategy on Disaster Reduction and the International Red Cross.

Delegates elected Wolfgang Förster (Austria) as the new Chair of the CHLM, as well as thirteen new Bureau members. Addressing other business, Chair Andoni highlighted the Bureau’s proposal to organize a ministerial meeting in September 2010, in conjunction with the 71st session of the CHLM. She underlined the timeliness of high-level involvement, considering that some major emerging issues, including climate change and the financial crisis, are not covered in the current CHLM strategy. Delegates accepted this proposal. Christina von Schweinichen, Deputy Director of the UNECE Environment, Housing and Land Management Division, provided information about the Trust Fund on Human Settlements.

Von Schweinichen thanked the participants as well as the Secretariat for their roles in making the meeting a success. Chair Andoni then closed the meeting in the late morning.

Participants were shown the meeting website by IISD Reporting Services before the start of the session.
 
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On agenda item on Building and Construction Safety, Chair Andoni said institutional, legal, financial and awareness issues often hinder the correct application of building technologies, and stressed the need for the CHLM to address this issue more directly.
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Christina von Schweinichen, UNECE Division of Environment, Housing and Land Management, provided information about the Trust Fund on Human Settlements, noting, in particular, contributions from Switzerland, the Netherlands and Italy.
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L-R: The closing dais with Christina von Schweinichen, UNECE Division of Environment, Housing and Land Management (EHLM); Paola Deda, CHLM Secretariat; and Doris Andoni, Chair of the Committee on Housing and Land Management (CHLM).
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Daniela Grabmüllerova, Czech Republic
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Janja Kreitmayer McKenzie, Slovenia
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Samvel Srapyan, Armenia

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Lily-Elisabeth Hutjes-Boelaars, Huairou Commission, stressed the importance of liaising with other relevant organizations, such as the UN International Strategy on Disaster Reduction and the International Red Cross.
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Elena Bejenaru, Republic of Moldova, called for discussion on the use of harmonized building standards and on safety at construction sites.
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Clive Warren, University of Queensland, Australia, drew attention to the work undertaken by other organizations in relation to disaster reduction and building resilience.
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Anthony Paish, World Fire Statistics Centre, drew attention to the dangers presented by wildfires, calling for effective planning and land use strategies in this regard.
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Azer Khanlarov, Azerbaijan, highlighted his country’s national strategy for renovation and construction, and proposed that a scientific conference on building safety be held in Baku, Azerbaijan, in 2010.
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Roberto Binatti, Italy, suggested that all natural hazards, not just earthquakes, be taken into account in the CHLM’s work.
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Emmy Galama-Rommerts, International Council of Women, suggested the celebration of an international day for housing and the living environment, in line with World Habitat Day.
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Elena Szolgayová, Slovakia, supported the Bureau’s proposal to organize a high-level ministerial meeting in September 2010, in conjunction with the 71st session of the CHLM.
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Martti Lujanen, Finland, called for cooperation to integrate statistics on homelessness and living conditions into national housing strategies.
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Abduvali Komilov, Tajikistan, highlighted the need to develop harmonized criteria for building resilience.
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Jean-Yves Barcelo, UN-HABITAT, reiterated UN-HABITAT’s dedication to cooperation with the CHLM.
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Wolfgang Förster, Austria, elected as the new Chair of the CHLM.
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Participants elected a new Chair and eleven Bureau members.

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Christina von Schweinichen, UNECE EHLM, thanked Chair Andoni for her excellent chairpersonship, not only in the meetings of the CHLM but also in her efforts to follow the work of the Committee and put it into practice in her home country Albania.
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L-R: Incoming CHLM Chair Wolfgang Förster, Austria; Christina von Schweinichen, UNECE EHLM; Paola Deda, CHLM Secretariat; and Chair Andoni.
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Related Links
UNECE resources
Agenda of the 70th Session of the Committee
Documents for the 70th Session of the Committee
UNECE Committee on Housing and Land Management


IISD RS resources
IISD RS coverage of the International Conference on Green Industry in Asia: “Managing the transition to resource-efficient and low-carbon industries”, 9-11 September 2009, Manila, the Philippines

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