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NOWPAP Activites (Oct. - Nov. 2010)

15th NOWPAP IGM in Moscow

The 15th NOWPAP Intergovernmental Meeting (IGM) was held on 16-18 November 2010 in Moscow, Russia.  Representatives of all NOWPAP member states participated in the meeting which was attended also by the directors of the four NOWPAP Regional Activity Centres (RACs).  The meeting participants reviewed the progress of NOWPAP implementation for the period of 2009-2010 and discussed the ways for future development of NOWPAP.  Along with the report of UNEP Executive Director and reports of the four RAC directors, the meeting approved the following documents:

•   The revised NOWPAP Resources Mobilization Strategy;

•   The revised NOWPAP Public Awareness Building Strategy;

•   The revised Terms of Reference for NOWPAP RCU, reflecting its coordinating role in resource mobilization and in raising awareness activities.

NOWPAP member states discussed thoroughly the NOWPAP Medium-term Strategy and decided to further develop it into a document which will be used to prioritize NOWPAP activities for the next biennium work plan of 2012-13 and beyond.  In addition, the meeting discussed a proposal on improving the quality of NOWPAP technical reports, which will be further revisited at the next IGM.  

With regard to the sustainability of the NOWPAP Trust Fund, member states were encouraged to make their utmost efforts to increase their annual contributions and the Russian Federation has announced its pledge to do so since 2011.  

NOWPAP partners, PICES and IOC WESTPAC, provided written statements for the meeting on cooperation, while the former sent a representative to deliver the statement at the meeting. 

The next 16th NOWPAP IGM meeting will take place in China in 2011.

NOWPAP Participation in the Marine Biodiversity Forum and CBD COP10

In conjunction with opening of the 10th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD COP 10, 18-29 October, 2010, Nagoya, Japan), the Northwest Pacific Region Environmental Cooperation Centre (the host of the NOWPAP Special Monitoring and Coastal Environmental Assessment Regional Activity Centre), organized the Marine Biodiversity Forum in the Northwest Pacific Region on 16 October 2010 in Toyama, Japan.  Sponsored by the Toyama Prefectural Government, this forum, organized as a side event of the CBD COP10, was attended by representatives of UNEP Marine and Coastal Ecosystems Branch, Pacific Regional Environmental Programme, Yellow Sea Large Marine Ecosystem project, several research institutions in Japan, together with some international students from Nagoya University and local citizens.  NOWPAP has been actively involved in the preparation of the forum in terms of providing advice on the meeting programme, identifying international speakers and contributing a presentation introducing NOWPAP activities on marine biodiversity in the region since 2007.

Being a part of the UNEP Regional Seas Programme (RSP), NOWPAP RCU has been requested to help organizing another CBD COP10 side event on 19 October 2010 where UNEP launched its Global Outlook, a series of the reports from the Regional Seas Conventions and Action Plans as well as global synthesis of the Marine Biodiversity Assessment.  NOWPAP has contributed to the global outlook, together with the other 17 regions around the world through providing the necessary information and analysis.  Joint efforts by RSP headquarters and NOWPAP RCU staff in the field have made the launch a successful event.  RCU staff has also helped with translation of news releases for some other UNEP side events.  During the CBD COP10, a UNEP booth was set up with the help of NOWPAP RCU staff to promote UNEP and Regional Seas Programmes activities related to biodiversity, including NOWPAP.  The booth has attracted public attention, receiving a few dozen of visitors every day.

NOWPAP at 2010 Global Gathering in Busan

For the third time in a row, NOWPAP participated in the annual event organized by Busan City Hall on 31 October 2010 to promote cultural exchanges among different countries and international organizations.  Among 64 exhibitors, NOWPAP arranged its booth to exhibit NOWPAP activities, including the way of addressing marine litter at the grass-root level.  



NOWPAP is strengthening relationships with partners

At a joint workshop on capacity building for the UN Regular Process for global reporting and assessment of the state of the marine environment, organized by the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) and the Korea Ocean Research and Development Institute (KORDI) on 21-22 October 2010 in Ansan, Republic of Korea, NOWPAP representative contributed a presentation introducing NOWPAP activities relevant to the Assessment of Assessments (AoA) and Regular Process.  NOWPAP experience shared at the workshop, together with other partners such as COBSEA, PEMSEA, PICES, WESTPAC and YSLME, constitutes regional efforts towards the Regular Process.  According to the NOWPAP workplan for 2010-2011, NOWPAP Regional Activity Centers are implementing several thematic assessments which might serve as a basis for the second “State of Marine Environment Report” for the NOWPAP region, contributing to the Regular Process as well.  

NOWPAP participated also in the 7th Executive Committee Meeting of PEMSEA held on 26-27 October 2010 in Manila, the Philippines.  This expanded Executive Committee Meeting allowed PEMSEA partners to discuss the future of PEMSEA as it is becoming an independent international organization (evolving from a GEF-financed regional project).  As one of the non-country partners, NOWPAP has been supportive in PEMSEA activities since the Letter of Cooperation (LOC) was signed three years ago.  With the renewal of the LOC in 2010, both sides are committed to further develop the partnership towards implementation of the NW Pacific Action Plan and the PEMSEA Sustainable Development Strategy for the Seas of East Asia.


NOWPAP continues dealing with marine litter problem

On 1-2 October 2010, NOWPAP International Coastal Cleanup (ICC) campaign and workshop on marine litter were held in Jeju, Republic of Korea.  The events were organized by the Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs (MLTM), Korea Marine Environment Management Corporation (KOEM) and NOWPAP Regional Coordinating Unit (RCU).  Workshop was attended by NOWPAP Marine Litter Focal Points, representatives of NOWPAP partners (YSLME, COBSEA and PEMSEA) and all NOWPAP Regional Activity Centers (RACs), leading NGOs dealing with marine litter in the region (OSEAN and JEAN) as well as local citizens and experts concerned about negative impacts of marine litter.  During the workshop, participants presented and discussed the results of marine litter monitoring and ICC campaigns in NOWPAP member states.  The trends in marine litter composition during the recent 10-20 years were compared with the results of the ICC campaigns around the world (compiled in annual reports by Ocean Conservancy).  Policies and best practices in dealing with marine litter were also presented and discussed.  Workshop participants agreed that the focus should be shifted to marine litter sources and that some government policies (e.g. bans on smoking in certain areas and bans on plastic bags) result in decrease of marine litter quantities.  During the discussions, representatives from NGOs and local citizens indicated that more government support (direct and indirect) is needed to deal with marine litter efficiently.

On 2 October, workshop participants were involved in beach cleanup along with dozens of local citizens who collected about a hundred sacks of garbage from the rocky beach.  Experts from NOWPAP member states sorted and counted garbage using the ICC data card and found that the most predominant items were: 1) buoys and floats; 2) glass bottles; 3) caps and lids.  Many small medicine bottles were also found.

The events marked the 10th anniversary of the ICC campaigns in Korea.  Next NOWPAP ICC campaign and workshop (focusing on dealing with the sources of marine litter) will be organized in China in 2011.


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