Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics and Green Economy in Focus During UNEP Meeting with Government of Russia vr, dec 14, 2012

UNEP Executive Director and Minister for Environment and Natural Resources Discuss Continued Cooperation

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UNEP experts are working with the Government of Russia as part of ongoing efforts to strengthen the environmental legacy of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics

Moscow, 14 december 2012 - From continued cooperation on the environmental sustainability of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics, to the challenges facing the Arctic, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Government of Russia outlined priority areas for collaboration during high-level meetings in Moscow this week.

UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner, Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Sergey Donskoy , and First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs A.I. Denisov discussed key actions to support biodiversity, freshwater resources and the green economy, among other issues.

The discussions took place on the margins the Fourth Meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP4) to the Tehran Convention on the protection of the marine environment of the Caspian Sea.

The Russian government expressed its appreciation for the ongoing engagement of UNEP experts in analyzing environmental impacts of the upcoming Winter Olympic Games.

Last July, UNEP and partners proposed close to 90 projects designed to minimize the impact of infrastructure developments around the Sochi National Park area, where the games will take place.

UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner offered UNEP's further engagement in greening efforts for Sochi 2014.

Next year marks the 2013 Year of the Environment in Russia, with a series of events due to be held across the country.

"At the outset of the Russia's G20 presidency and ahead of next year's special focus on the environment, UNEP is supporting efforts in Russia to open new work streams for addressing environmental challenges and opportunities, as part of the country's regional and global responsibilities and leadership," said Achim Steiner at the meeting.

Achim Steiner also thanked the Government of Russia for its recent decision to increase its contribution to the UNEP Environment Fund to US$1.5 million, starting in 2013, and   underlined Russia's efforts towards the implementation of the Global Environment Facility's Arctic Agenda 2020 Programme.

The programme, launched in 2011, aims to improve the sustainable development of the Arctic and meet the challenges of the region's rapidly changing climate. The initiative addresses energy efficiency, renewable energy development, protected areas, and transboundary marine systems, among other issues.

Other key environmental priorities covered in the meeting included:

  • support to the development of the "green economy"
  • the application of "green standards" and of ecologically safe best available technologies;
  • water resources management, protection of water bodies, marine and coastal environment from the adverse anthropogenic impact;
  • regulation of the use of chemicals, utilization and processing of wastes;
  • cooperation for the purposes of further implementation of the Bali Strategic Plan for Technology Support and Capacity-Building, making use of the Russian expert potential;
  • sustainable production and consumption;
  • informing and raising public awareness on environmental protection issues;
  • implementation of environmental agreements and programs, which exist under the auspices of United Nations

For more information, please contact:

Vladimir Moshkalo, Head of UNEP Moscow Office on +7 495 787-2156 / +7 (985) 928-37-92, Email: Vladimir.Moshkalo@unep.org

 
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