Environment Programme

In early October, the Environment Programme’s Larry MacFaul was invited to participate in a stakeholder consultation on the UK’s timber procurement policy and level of service provided by the Central Point of Expertise for Timber Procurement or ‘CPET’. During October, the Environment Programme also attended a meeting to discuss how stakeholders can collaborate to address the exploitation of Flags of Convenience by illegal ‘pirate’ fishing vessels. This meeting, held in London, was hosted by the Environmental Justice Foundation and the Foundation for International Environmental Law and Development. The event brought together representatives from a range of NGOs, policy think-tanks, academic institutions, trade unions and other interest groups.

In November, Larry was invited to participate in a civil society consultation on the UK government initiative for a new Forest Governance, Markets and Climate (FGMC) programme. The purpose of the meeting was to review the proposed programme’s purpose, outputs and scope. Set up by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), the programme will build on the current Forest Governance and Trade Programme, due to end in 2011. This consultation took place in London, in the offices of DFID, and included representatives from both NGOs and the private sector.

November also saw Larry spend time using his environmental expertise to help in the field of security. He travelled to Geneva in order to give a presentation in a seminar on ‘International Aspects of Arms Trade Treaty Implementation: Learning from existing international agreements’. The seminar, which ran between 10-11 November, was hosted by Saferworld and included representatives from governments and international organizations.

The aim of the Saferworld seminar was to examine what kind of provisions and institutional architecture the nascent Arms Trade Treaty needs in order to ensure that it is both effective and durable. The meeting was also intended to build awareness of the importance of these issues in the negotiations on the treaty. The meeting’s sessions looked at monitoring and reporting arrangements, review processes, consultations and dispute settlement, and capacity building.

The seminar included speakers on a range of international agreements and structures—including on conventional arms transfers, the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention, the Chemical Weapons Convention, UN Security Council Resolution 1540, the convention on nuclear safety, international human rights instruments, the World Trade Organization and various environmental treaties.

Mr MacFaul gave his presentation during the session on Monitoring Implementation. In his presentation, he provided an overview of the institutional bodies and processes that make up the UN climate regime and the rationale for their establishment. He also contributed to the debate using VERTIC’s experience in policies and measures on trade in natural resources. Owen Greene, Co-Chair of VERTIC’s Board of Directors, also presented in this session, drawing lessons from the Montreal Protocol on Ozone Depleting Substances.