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Fourth Session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-4)

11 March 2019 - 15 March 2019
Nairobi, Kenya

The United Nations Environment Assembly is the world’s highest-level decision-making body on the environment. The Assembly meets biennially to set priorities for global environmental policies and develop international environmental law. This year’s theme is “Innovative solutions for environmental challenges and sustainable consumption and production.”

The High-Level Segment of the fourth session of the UN Environment Assembly will focus on innovative solutions for environmental challenges and Sustainable Consumption and Production guided by the Executive Director’s Report on the theme. This two-day session will bring together various Heads of State, Ministers and Heads of Delegations to provide national statements addressing best practices, policies, financing, technologies, partnerships and multistakeholder processes in support of the overarching theme. Read more about the High-Level Segment here.

History of the United Nations Environment Assembly

The United Nations Environment Assembly was created in June 2012, when world leaders called for UN Environment to be strengthened and upgraded during the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, also referred to as RIO+20. The Environment Assembly embodies a new era in which the environment is at the centre of the international community’s focus and is given the same level of prominence as issues such as peace, poverty, health and security. The establishment of the Environment Assembly was the culmination of decades of international efforts, initiated at the UN Conference on the Human Environment in Stockholm in 1972 and aimed at creating a coherent system of international environmental governance.

The first and second sessions of the UN Environment Assembly tackled and adopted resolutions on major issues of illegal trade in wildlife, air quality, environmental rule of law, financing the Green Economy, the Sustainable Development Goals, and “delivering on the environmental dimension of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”. It was also a success with the adoption in 2014 of a Ministerial Outcome Document that called for the achievement of “an ambitious, universal implementable and realizable Post-2015 Development Agenda” that integrated all the dimensions of sustainable development for “the protection of the environment and the promotion of inclusive social and economic development in harmony with nature”.

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