Wednesday, 4 June 2008

Reporting on environment and sustainable development from Africa to the world

The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) - Reporting Services Division (IISD RS) and the South Africa’s Department of Environmental Affairs & Tourism (DEAT), in partnership with the UN Environment Programme’s Regional Office for Africa, have joined together to assist in communicating the policy outcomes of regional meetings on environment and related sustainable development issues to the larger international community. These three partners have launched a new three-year project to provide coverage of regional sustainable development policy meetings in Africa.

The project is the result of the identified need to give African meetings and activities a higher exposure to the international community. Building on the success of the Earth Negotiations Bulletin (ENB) in covering international environment and sustainable development meetings, this project expects to replicate this success at the regional level in order to make the outcome of Africa’s NEPAD follow-up meetings available to the world in real-time.

This first phase of the project will consist of reporting from meetings of ministers in Africa on sustainable development and environment as well as those on water, energy, transport, human settlements and technology. Through the distribution of targeted policy briefs on upcoming international meetings, IISD RS will also be building a network of environment and sustainable development policy experts working in African capitals. The meetings to be covered by IISD Reporting Services will be selected from meetings of the following organisations but not limited to the following:
  • African Union and its subsidiary bodies Southern African Development Community and its subsidiary bodies United Nations Environment Programme New Partnership for Africa’s Development
  • International Agreements and Conventions that may be hosted by African Governments
  • Relevant South-South Cooperation Meetings
  • Bi-annual meetings of the African Ministerial Conference on Environment
  • African preparatory meetings for the Commission on Sustainable Development
  • Planned meetings of the NEPAD Environment Initiative Meetings of the UN Economic Commission for Africa’s Committee on Sustainable Development.
In addition, IISD RS will publish periodic policy briefs for governments in the region in relation to multilateral environmental agreements and sustainable development in the context of the follow-up to the WSSD and the NEPAD Environment Action Plan.