OEWG12 Online Side Event: Evaluating the effectiveness of Conventions

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

On 2 September, experts from chemicals and waste conventions, Regional Seas Conventions and UNEP explored together the key role of science in tracking progress in reaching environmental goals.

The moderator of the event, Executive Secretary of the Minamata Convention on Mercury Monika Stankiewicz, highlighted that “sharing lessons learnt from measuring progress in achieving our environmental goals, whether concerning marine litter, mercury  or other hazardous substances, will contribute greatly to developing and improving the evaluation of how effective our conventions are.”

The side event, organized by the Minamata Convention Secretariat, was held during the online segment of the 12th Meeting of the Open-ended Working Group of the Basel Convention (OEWG-12) and saw a virtual attendance of 137 participants. The following panelists exchanged their experiences and perspectives on a fit-for-purpose effectiveness evaluation system which is based on best available science:

  • Michael J Spilsbury, Director of the Evaluation Office, UNEP
  • Ana-Maria Witt, Programme Officer from the Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions
  • Jerker Tamelander, Coordinator of the Coordinating Body on the Seas of East Asia (COBSEA)
  • Dominic Pattinson, Executive Secretary of the Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the North-East Atlantic (OSPAR Convention).

The parties to the Minamata Convention are currently in a process of preparing for the  first effectiveness evaluation of the Convention to be done by 2023. As agreed by the third Conference of the Parties in 2019, the work is ongoing to develop monitoring guidance to maintain harmonized, comparable information on mercury levels in the environment, and a report on mercury trade, supply and demand, including mercury waste flows and stocks. The next Conference of the Parties, to be held in November 2021 in Bali, Indonesia, will consider and decide on the next steps of the effectiveness evaluation process.

The recording of the side-event is available here.

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