UNEA 4: Trade Unions Call For Urgent Action on Marine Litter, Plastic Pollution and Toxic Chemicals

10 March 2019 Nairobi, KENYA
Keywords : Activities Climate Change And Environment Declarations Technical document

Over 4700 people are in Nairobi this week to participate in the Fourth Session of the United Nations Environment Assembly running from 11 - 15 May 2019. The Summit is the highest decision making body on the environment; bringing together Heads of States, Ministers, Business leaders, Senior UN officials and Civil Society Organizations.
World leaders including Presidents of France and Kenya - Emmanuel Macron and Uhuru Kenyatta - are scheduled to attend this year’s High-level Summit around the theme "Innovative solutions for environmental challenges and sustainable consumption and production (SCP)".

March 11

The Summit will focus on three key areas:
• Tackling the environmental challenges related to poverty and natural resources management, including sustainable food systems, food security and halting biodiversity loss;
• Introducing life-cycle approaches to resource efficiency, energy, chemicals and waste management; and
• Ensuring sustainable business development at a time of rapid technological change.
While all these areas are of major importance for a sustainable future with thriving workers and their families, unions will focus especially on the issue of marine litter, plastic pollution and toxic chemicals.
Trade union positions are presented in this policy brief.
The Trade Union movement represented by a 3-member delegation from ITUC-Africa, ITUC and COTU-Kenya are pushing for governments to recognize the scope of the problem of pollution of the environment and oceans including impacts on loss of biodiversity and marine life which has direct and indirect impacts on workers and the broader society.
We join hands with other representatives from Civil Society Organizations who gathered in Nairobi from 7 - 8 May - in the 18th Meeting of the Global Major Groups and Stakeholders Forum - and call on all governments to develop an internationally binding instrument to prevent plastic pollution as a matter of urgency.
While we look forward to positive outcomes from the Summit, ITUC-Africa commiserates with the families and friends of passengers on Ethiopian Airlines 302 who lost their lives in the tragic plane crash from Addis Ababa to Nairobi on Sunday, March 10, 2019.
Nairobi, 10 May, 2019

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