Bakary Kante joined UNEP in February 1999 as Senior Advisor to the Executive Director, and was later appointed director of the Division of Environmental Conventions (DEC).
Prior to his appointment, Bakary was well known to UNEP, having played an important role in the field of environmental development at the national and regional levels. He served as Director of the Environment in his native Senegal from 1984 to 1999; he was Chairman of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation of the United Nations Framework Conference on Climate Change; and was Senegal's representative to the UNEP Governing Council from 1984 to 1998. He also led his country's negotiations during many African and G-77 meetings which dealt with global environment and development issues. Upon joining UNEP, Kante was appointed member of the UN Secretary-General's Task Force to assess environmental damage in the war-torn Balkans.
Formerly, as Director of the Division of Policy Development and Law (DPDL), Bakary provided policy guidance and advice in support of the development and implementation of environmental strategies and programmes of action, including water and land policies. He advanced the involvement of civil societies and other major groups in the work of UNEP and facilitated the provision of policy and technical assistance to Governments in the field of environmental law. He played an important role in promoting UNEP's involvement in the work of the UN Development Groups, and spearheaded DPDL's efforts to develop a number of major projects and programmes including the intergovernmental strategic plan on capacity building and technology support, and international environmental governance.
Bakary now spearheads UNEP's work in the field of Environmental Law and Conventions.
He holds a Doctorate in Environmental Sciences. He is married with four children.