05 Mar 2018 Story Environmental rights and governance

Commonwealth parliamentarians trained on Climate Change

In partnership with UN Environment, the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) will offer training on climate change with the objective of enhancing the capacities of legislators in large and small jurisdictions across the Commonwealth on handling climate change concerns. This follows a recently held event, the 63rd Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference, in Dhaka, Bangladesh. At the event, a motion raised by UN Environment was endorsed, encouraging countries to reinforce policies, strengthen institutions, and mobilize resources towards combating climate change.

This training will enhance the knowledge of legislators to:

  • Formulate and review appropriate legislation to pursue sustainable development relating to the Sustainable Development Goals;
  • Provide effective oversight on the negotiation and implementation of internationally agreed environmental and sustainable development goals, including the United Nations Framework Convention and its associated treaties and;
  • Provide effective oversight on the enforcement of national legislation relating to sustainable development, including conservation, protection, enhancement, valuation and support of nature and natural resources, including biological diversity and forest governance/REDD+.

The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association boasts over 180 parliaments and legislatures in 52 Commonwealth countries and its network extends to over 17,000 Parliamentarians and Parliamentary staff. Its purpose is to connect, develop, promote and support parliamentarians and their staff to identify benchmarks of good governance and the implementation of the enduring values of the Commonwealth.

Mr. Erik Solheim, the Executive Director of UN Environment, attending the meeting said, “we may sometimes think of the law as something divorced from our day to day lives, but for many of us it is the reason we can still breathe fresh air, drink clean water and access wholesome food. At UN Environment, we are working with Parliamentarians to strengthen environmental law and governance to enable people to lead dignified lives, throughout the Commonwealth and beyond and the new partnership with the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association will help to deliver this.”

A joint Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by the CPA Secretary-General, Mr. Akbar Khan and Mr. Erik Solheim. This move will help to further both organizations’ key objectives in areas like sustainable development, particularly the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its components, namely climate change and the Paris Agreement.

According to the CPA Secretary-General, Mr. Akbar Khan, “the signing of this Memorandum of Understanding is a vital step towards strengthening the role of Commonwealth Parliaments and Parliamentarians in tackling the global challenges of climate change. By working/partnering with UNEP, the CPA will be able to provide cutting edge training on environmental protection for our Members. This will strengthen Parliamentarians’ ability to pass legislation and put the necessary enforcement mechanisms in place on constituency, national and international levels to protect our planet.”

UN Environment provides expert guidance on the development of environmental legislation as well as legal assistance to help strengthen and streamline institutional arrangements and capacities for tackling environmental issues.

For more information, please contact [email protected]