Conference on the Global Pact for the Environment to convene in New York City

A one-day conference will be held on 20 September at Columbia University (New York) to continue discussions toward a “Global Pact for the Environment”. The event is free and open to the public, bringing prominent leaders together on the sidelines of the 72nd session of the UN General Assembly to present and discuss the current draft of the Pact and its contribution to overcoming complex legal and political challenges for sustainable development.

The Drafting Committee at the French Constitutional Court Photo: WCEL

The Drafting Committee at the French Constitutional Court

The Draft Global Pact for the Environment was launched in June 2017 under the auspices of Laurent Fabius, President of the Constitutional Council of France and Yann Aguila, Chair of the Environmental Law Commission of the Club des Juristes, in cooperation with the IUCN World Commission on Environmental Law (WCEL). Over two days, an eminent drafting committee convened to finalize 26 articles of the draft Pact and a public event featured speakers such as Justice Antonio Benjamin (WCEL Chair), Ban Ki-moon (former UN Secretary-General), and French President Emmanuel Macron who endorsed the articles announcing his intentions to introduce the text to the UN General Assembly.

This successive “Conference on the Global Pact for the Environment” now seeks to increase understanding and build support for eventual adoption of the Pact as a new global covenant for human rights and the environment. With guidance of Prof. Jeffrey Sachs, the Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment (CCSI), and the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network, the conference will convene leaders in the field of international environmental law and conservation on 20 September 2017 at the Faculty House of Columbia University. Confirmed speakers include WCEL members Prof. Laurence Boisson de Chazournes (University of Geneva) and Marcos Orellana (Human Rights Watch), as well as Zhang Xinsheng (IUCN President) and Erik Solheim (Executive Director, UN Environment).

Session topics will include:

  • The normative and legal case for a Global Pact on the Environment
  • The foundation for implementation and enforcement of such a Pact; and
  • The role of stakeholders in moving environmental governance forward.

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