• Overview
  • Organizer and Speakers
  • More Information

Emerging pollutants are chemicals and compounds that have recently been identified as dangerous to the environment, and consequently to the health of human beings. Precisely, they have been labeled “emerging” because of the rising level of concern linked to them. In addition, many of these emerging pollutants have not been regulated under national or international legislation, hence posing a greater risk to our livelihood.

These pollutants include a variety of compounds such as antibiotics, drugs, steroids, endocrine disruptors, hormones, industrial additives, chemicals, and also microbeads and microplastics. There is an inextricable link between these pollutants and wastewater. Municipal, industrial, and domestic wastewater are, in fact, a primary pathway for their wide diffusion in the aquatic environment. While more research is needed, it is widely acknowledged that these emerging pollutants are increasingly becoming a hazard.

This webinar aims to discuss the issue of emerging pollutants and wastewater and will focus on case studies, projects, as well as specific pollutants that constitute a threat to the environment and our livelihoods.

Join the webinar on Thursday, 20 February 2020, from Nairobi time (EAT). Please register using this link: https://bit.ly/2tjmOUc.

Recording of the webinar: https://wedocs.unep.org/handle/20.500.11822/31763


Logos of Organizers



The Global Wastewater Initiative (GW²I) is a multi-stakeholder platform that brings together UN agencies, international organizations, governments, scientists, the private sector, and non-profit organizations with the goal of information-sharing and cooperation for an effective and comprehensive response to the challenges posed by wastewater management.

The GW²I is chaired by Turkey and hosted by the Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities (GPA) of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), an intergovernmental cooperation mechanism that aims to prevent the degradation of the marine environment from land-based activities. Initially established to address nine source categories of marine pollution (sewage, persistent organic pollutants, radioactive substances, heavy metals, oils, nutrients, sediment mobilization, litter and physical alteration and destruction of habitat), the Programme has, since 2012, focused on marine litter, nutrient pollution, and wastewater. Together with its partners and through the Global Wastewater Initiative, the GPA seeks to enhance the understanding of wastewater as a resource and works on various issues related to sustainable wastewater management including policy guidelines, technology, knowledge generation, capacity building, and awareness-raising that contribute to the implementation of the sustainable development goal 6, target 6.3.1, halving the proportion of untreated wastewater discharged in our water bodies.

The webinar is co-organized together with the International Water Management Institute (IWMI), and UNESCO, also partners of the Global Wastewater Initiative, the United Nations Environment Programme – Caribbean Environment Programme, and the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI).



Andrea Caputo – Programme Officer, Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI)

Dr. Andrea Caputo is a Programme Officer at the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI). At SIWI, Dr. Caputo designs and coordinates international development projects in the water and pharmaceuticals area, with a major focus on antimicrobial resistance. Translating scientific language into popular science, Dr. Caputo helps stakeholders understanding their responsibility and their opportunities to contribute to a sustainable future for the oceans and holistically for our planet. Before working at SIWI, Dr. Andrea Caputo achieved his Doctoral degree in Marine Ecology at Stockholm University (Sweden), and his Master’s degree in Marine Biology at the Polytechnic University of Marche (Italy).

Christopher Corbin – Senior Programme Officer, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Caribbean Environment Programme  

Christopher Corbin is a Programme Officer with the Ecosystems Division of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). He is based at the Secretariat for the Cartagena Convention in Kingston, Jamaica, which covers all the countries of the Wider Caribbean Region. Chris is responsible for the Secretariat’s Marine Pollution and Communications Sub-Programmes. Chris, a Saint Lucian national, has over 30 years of programme and project management experience. He has been involved in the development and implementation of multi-country projects on wastewater management, solid waste management, and integrated coastal zone and watershed management. Most recently he coordinated the development of the “State of Convention Area Report on Marine Pollution in the Wider Caribbean Region”.  

Josiane Nikiema – Research Group Leader, Water Pollution and Circular Economy, International Water Management Institute (IWMI)

Dr. Josiane Nikiema leads the Research Group on Circular Economy and Water Pollution of the International Water Management Institute's (IWMI). She is based in the Accra (Ghana) and has over ten years’ post-doctoral experience in the field of environmental sciences. Josiane works on the optimization of treatment technologies, leading to the safe and cost-effective recovery of water, nutrients and organic matter from wastewater, fecal sludge, and solid wastes. She also pilots sustainable nutrient recovery business models in Ghana, Sri Lanka, and India. Josiane is active in designing integrated urban water management plans for cities and solutions for enhanced water security.

Sarantuyaa Zandaryaa – Programme Specialist, International Initiative on Water Quality (IIWQ), UNESCO

Sarantuyaa Zandaryaa is a Programme Specialist for water quality in the Division of Water Sciences—the Secretariat of the Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme (IHP) of UNESCO in Paris. Working for UNESCO since 2007, Sarantuyaa leads IHP activities on water quality and wastewater management, including the UNESCO Project on Emerging Pollutants in Water and Wastewater, which aims to enhance and to generate knowledge, promoting research, providing policy advice and building human capacities on emerging pollutants. Sarantuyaa has a Postdoctoral Degree in Environment and Sustainable Development Policy and a Doctoral degree in Environmental Engineering. Before joining UNESCO, she worked at the United Nations University in Tokyo.

The webinar will be moderated by Birguy Lamizana and Riccardo Zennaro.

Birguy Lamizana has more than 20 years of working experience in the field of ecosystems and water management, environmental impacts assessments, community involvement, and capacity building related to integrated water resources management. Before joining UNOPS in 2009, and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in 2012, Birguy served as Coordinator of the IUCN West Africa Regional Wetlands and Water Resources Programme. She was also the Regional Coordinator for the Global Water Partnership (GWP), and Technical Advisor for the Water Partnership Programme Trust Fund of the African Development Bank (AfDB). Birguy is currently a Programme Management Officer in charge of wastewater management at UNEP.

Riccardo Zennaro is as an Associate Programme Officer for wastewater management at the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in Nairobi, Kenya. He is passionate about water management and sanitation, international relations, and has experience working on environmental and water-related programmes and projects, including at the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) in Vienna and Belgrade, at the European Commission in Brussels, and with an Italian NGO, contributing to the implementation of a water supply and food security project in rural Tanzania. Riccardo has a Master’s degree in Environmental Technology and International Affairs from the Vienna University of Technology and Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, Austria.