What is the event about?

To assist our Pacific Island Members prepare for the first INC, the Secretariat with funding support from the Australia Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, will hold the Pacific Regional Preparatory Workshop for the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC) on the 16-18 August 2022 in Suva, Fiji.

Given that not all national borders may be fully opened, the workshop is therefore planned to be a hybrid workshop to be delivered in person and virtually.

What is the background to the Pacific Regional Preparatory Workshop for the Intergovernmental
Negotiating Committee (INC)?

Marine plastic pollution is a pressing environmental, health and economic development problem for the Pacific region especially for island countries and territories. Plastic pollution in particular, threatens the livelihoods of Pacific island communities that are dependent on coastal systems for food, trade and tourism. Plastics adversely affect fish and other marine life, coral reefs, beaches and mangrove forests, and devalues the amenity of coastlines, threatening the growing tourism sector.

In 2017 and 2018 Pacific Island Forum leaders’ meetings, Pacific leaders committed to addressing the issue of single-use plastics as a matter of urgency and endorsed SPREP’s Pacific Regional Action Plan for Marine Litter (or simply the ‘Marine Litter Action Plan’). The meeting of Environment Ministers’ High-Level Talanoa, 10th September 2021 communique adopted the ‘Pacific Regional Declaration On The Prevention Of Marine Litter And Plastic Pollution And Its Impacts’ (or simply the ‘Pacific regional declaration on plastics’) outlining its position to addressing the issue of plastic pollution.

In March 2022, the Fifth Session the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) adopted resolution UNEA 5.2 titled “End plastic pollution: Towards an International Legally Binding Instrument.” Resolution UNEA 5.2 convenes an Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC) to develop and negotiate a new binding global agreement on covering the whole life cycle of plastics.

The UNEA 5.2 resolution is in line with the Pacific Regional Declaration on the Prevention of Marine Litter and Plastic Pollution and its Impacts expressing Pacific leaders’ grave concern about the environmental, social, cultural, economic, human rights, human health and, food security impacts of plastics pollution at each stage of its life cycle. This regional declaration mentioned above encouraged states attending the UNEA5.2 session to support the establishment of an Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee to negotiate a new binding global agreement covering the whole life cycle of plastics.

The process started with the Open-Ended Working Group held on the 30 May to 1 June 2022 to prepare for the first INC scheduled to be held in November 2022 in Uruguay.

The Australian-funded Pacific Ocean Litter Project was borne from the Australian Government’s desire to assist SPREP and Pacific island countries (PICs) with the implementation of agreed actions under the Marine Litter Action Plan, and forms part of broader Australian Government support for sustainable oceans in the Pacific.

What are the goals of the event?

Workshop Aim

The aim of the workshop is to provide Member Governments with the assistance they may need in negotiating a global agreement to address plastic pollution covering the whole life cycle of plastics.

Objectives

Outcome 1: PICTs are able to actively engage in negotiating a new binding global agreement that’s in line with the Pacific regional declaration on plastics.
Outcome 2: PICTs are able to establish regional positions to engage meaningfully in global negotiations.
Outcome 3: PICTs are able to establish negotiating positions with other SIDS to engage in global negotiations.

What is the programme of the event?

Workshop Day 1

$ 99

Per Month
Tuesday

16 August

MORNING

Opening of the Workshop

Objectives of the meeting

Regional Declaration on Plastic Pollution.

The Global Problem: What is required by countries on the road to the INC-1.

Why does the Pacific need a global agreement on plastic pollution.

Talanoa

AFTERNOON

Key issues discussion at INC-1.

Workshop Day 2

$ 99

Per Month
Wednesday

17 August

MORNING

Recap of key messages from day 1

Cluster group work – world café format.

Cluster (1): Objectives Definitions and Structure of Work

Cluster (2): Institutional Framework

Report back to plenary & Discussion

Cluster (3): Sustainable Production and Consumption

Cluster (4): Sustainable Product Design and Manufacture

AFTERNOON

Report back to plenary & Discussion

Cluster (5): Environmentally Sound Waste Management

Cluster (6): National Action Plans

Report back to plenary & Discussion

Summary report of workshop outcomes

Closed Meeting to Members

$ 99

Per Month
Thursday

18 August

MORNING

Election of Chair

Issues of importance from workshop for discussion

Summary of Key issues for discussion at the first INC

Summary of key findings and discussions from the six clusters

Coordination of P-SIDS leading up to INC 1, 26 November- 2 December 2022 Uruguay

AFTERNOON

Communications strategy

Other matters

Adoption of the Meeting key outcomes

Workshop Recordings

Our Work

SWAP teaser
VIDEO PRODUCED BY
le Foyer socio-educatif du collège Mua Iavegahua in Wallis
VIDEO PRODUCED BY
the Laumei Outrigger Canoe Club
VIDEO PRODUCED BY
the Samoa Recycling Waste Management Association (SRWMA)
VIDEO PRODUCED BY
Vanuatu Environmental Science Society (English version)
VIDEO PRODUCED BY
Vanuatu Environmental Science Society (French version)
VIDEO PRODUCED BY
the association « Mouvement du Focolare » in Wallis
VIDEO PRODUCED BY
the association of the Village de Vaitupu in Wallis
VIDEO PRODUCED BY
the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of Samoa
VIDEO PRODUCED BY
the association No Pelesitiki Campaign in Tonga

How to prepare for the workshop?

In order to prepare to fully engage at the Preparatory Workshop, we invite participants to read the PACIFIC REGIONAL DECLARATION ON THE PREVENTION OF MARINE LITTER AND PLASTIC POLLUTION AND ITS IMPACTS  prior to the meeting. Also, there are some guiding questions for countries to discuss

Does the ‘Pacific Regional Declaration on the Prevention of Marine Litter and Plastic Pollution and its Impacts’ still accurately represent the Pacific position moving into negotiations?
The incoming global plastics treaty will take ‘a comprehensive approach that addresses the full life cycle of plastics.’ 1 Where should the ‘life cycle of plastic’ begin and end?
How can we ensure the treaty is capable of ending marine plastic pollution at the same time as ending land-based, atmospheric and freshwater plastic pollution?
The plastics treaty negotiations will be split into different areas or ‘clusters’ which will have significant influence on the outcome of the treaty. Does the vision set out by the Environmental Investigation Agency and Center for International Environmental Law align with Pacific needs and priorities?
There are many plastic pollution issues that are shared by Pacific nations. Is there an issue that you feel is unique to your country or territory that is not shared by other Pacific nations?
How have your and your region’s priorities been represented at UNEA and other related global policy meetings to date?
Moving forwards, what strategies will ensure Pacific priorities are part of the conversation?
What text is needed in the global treaty to meet the challenges that cannot be addressed by PICs’ national policy frameworks alone?
1 See UNEA Resolution 5/14
What should be included in National Plastic Prevention Plans (N4Ps)/National Plastics Action Plans in the Pacific Islands region to ensure they effectively respond to a comprehensive global treaty?

For more information