Minister Edna Molewa leads SA delegation to Third United Nations Environment Assembly in Kenya

5 November 2017

 

The Minister of Environmental Affairs, Dr Edna Molewa, is leading the South African delegation to the third United Nations Environment Assembly in Nairobi, Kenya, where the universal climate body is expected to commit to a pollution-free planet.

The United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) is the decision-making body of United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) with a universal membership of all 193 UN Member States with full involvement of UN organisations, specialised agencies, inter-governmental organisations, civil society and the private sector. 

The Assembly is being held until 6 December 2017 under the theme Towards a Pollution Free Planet. “The Assembly hopes to deliver a number of tangible and realistic commitments that will contribute to the end of the pollution of all our water resources, air and land, and to safely manage chemical and other waste,” said Minister Molewa.

The Political Declaration on Pollution is linked to the Sustainable Development Goals and will serve as a signal that humanity can work together to eliminate the threat of pollution and the destruction of the planet.  Resolutions and decisions to be adopted by Member States are expected to address specific dimensions of pollution and are set to include voluntary commitments by governments, civil society and private entities to clean up the planet.  In addition, Parties and organisations are being encourage to commit to cleaning up the planet by signing the #BeatPollution Pledge.

The South African delegation includes technical experts. Minister Molewa said as a developing and African country, the priority is to enable international cooperation to address the pressing global challenges related to pollution, including its adverse impacts on human health, sustainable development and biodiversity.

“For developing countries, means of implementation support in the form of finance, capacity building and technology transfer is essential to empower us to contribute our best effort to address pollution in all its forms,” said Dr Molewa.

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