26th Meeting of the Ramsar Standing Committee -- Agenda papers


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26th Meeting of the Ramsar Standing Committee
Gland, Switzerland, 3 - 7 December 2001
Agenda item 10 (c)

DOC. SC26-6(c)

Ramsar’s participation in the Environment Management Group (EGM) and its Issue Management Groups (IMGs)

Action requested: The Standing Committee is requested to note the Bureau participation in this process and offer its views, if it wishes to do so, in relation to the UNEP documents attached in the annexes on harmonization of information management and reporting for biodiversity-related treaties.

1. The Environmental Management Group (EMG), established by the UN General Assembly at its fifty-third session in 2000, is chaired by the Executive Director of UNEP, who reports directly to the UN Secretary-General. The EMG focuses on environment and human settlement issues, in the context of the linkages between environment and development. The most important goal of the EMG is to achieve effective coordination and joint action in key areas of environmental and human settlements concern.

2. The Bureau has been invited to join the EMG and has attended the three meetings held so far, always in Geneva.

3. The EMG has decided to establish Issue Management Groups (IMGs) to deal with its tasks. So far three IMGs has been established: a) Harmonization of information managment and reporting for biodiversity-related treaties, led by UNEP’s World Conservation Monitoring Centre (WCMC); b) Environmental education, led by UNESCO; and c) Municipal waste, led by UNIDO. Ramsar has been participating in the first two of these.

4. At the most recent meeting, UNEP-WCMC submitted the report in relation to harmonization of information management and reporting for biodiversity-related treaties, a copy of which is attached to this document. The Standing Committee may wish to express its opinions concerning Section X of the document on Recommended actions, and Section XI on Other potential supporting and demonstration actions (paragraphs 54-72).

5. As indicated in paragraph 55, UNEP is implementing a series of national pilot projects to assess different approaches to harmonized reporting for global biodiversity-related treaties. At the request of the Ramsar Bureau at the last EMG meeting on 10 October 2001, UNEP’s Division of Environmental Conventions has circulated a report on the status of this project. A copy is attached for information and comments.

The UNEP paper mentioned above has not been reproduced here.

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