UNEA 3 - Towards a Pollution-free Planet

Bonn/Nairobi, 4 December 2017 – the third session of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA3) is taking place in Nairobi from 4 to 6 December with the theme “Towards a Pollution-free Planet”.

Sources of pollution in the marine environment range from human-generated noise, which can be deadly for some whales and reduce catch rates affecting fishing activities and communities, to intentional or accidental oil spills affecting entire ecosystems. In the terrestrial environment, light pollution is particularly severe at times and places where animal congregation and migration occur. Pollution also takes the form of chemicals contaminating landscapes and accumulating when absorbed or ingested in the bodies of wildlife and people and affecting the food chain.

At last October’s CMS 12th Conference of the Parties (COP12) several Resolutions were adopted that had a direct bearing on UNEA3 and issues related to pollution.  These include the management of marine debris, underwater noise and the conservation of vultures, numbers of which have plummeted due to poisoning by poison baits and veterinary pharmaceuticals.

The CMS Secretariat has produced an overview of pollution issues affecting migratory species - many of which were addressed in Resolutions adopted at the COP including pesticides in agriculture, lead pollution and air pollution.  Each source of pollution is described along with the actions taken by the CMS Family to tackle the problem.  The publication is entitled “Pollution, People and Wildlife – a response from the CMS Family” and is available in English, French and Spanish.

On the eve of COP12, and in view of UNEA3, a “Leaders’ Breakfast” was co-convened by the CMS Secretariat and UN Environment. The event, at which Ministers and other senior government officials; businessmen and -women and representatives of intergovernmental organizations discussed ways of mitigating the detrimental impact of pollution on wildlife and ecosystems.  Participants focused on impacts related to marine plastics and from lead ammunition and pesticides as well as on existing and potential solutions to address them.  The outcome of the event was transmitted to UNEA3 and is available here

Following the consultation, a number of leaders agreed to sign up to UN Environment’s #BeatPollution pledge to make changes in their own life to contribute to a cleaner world.

The press release issued after the Breakfast can be read here.


Last updated on 20 December 2017