21 November 2012, Osaka, Japan – UNITAR participated in the biennium conference of the UNEP-hosted Global Partnership on Waste Management (GPWM), held on November 5 and 6 in Osaka, Japan. The conference brought together waste experts from around the world to find answers to the global challenge of waste management and reap the economic and environmental benefits through better coordination.

GPWM biennium conference 5 - 6 November 2012_ 032With approximately 1.3 billion tonnes of municipal waste generated each year, and volumes expected to increase to 2.2 billion tonnes by 2025 according to World Bank figures, urgent action is needed to head off the threat to the environment and human health posed by this global waste crisis. This growing problem was foremost in the minds of delegates who gathered at the biennium conference. The Co-chairs’ Summary of the Conference is now available.

UNITAR presented on the UNEP/UNITAR guidance document on the development of national waste management strategies. This guidance will bring together the experience and lessons learned of countries which have already strategies in place. The guidance is intended to be used by countries as a reference material for issues to be addressed when developing their strategies, for the identification of implementation tools which need to be developed, and consultations with concerned stakeholders to be carried out. The integration perspective of the guidelines will ensure that the national strategies will be comprehensive and coherent, realistic and effective, while they will at the same time have enough flexibility to avoid a “one size fits all” approach. UNITAR and UNEP are currently seeking to mobilize resources for a pilot testing phase of the guidance at the country level.

UNITAR, as a member of the GPWM steering committee, also attended the first meeting of the GPWM steering committee which took place on 4 November 2012 in Osaka, Japan. The steering committee is the governing body of the GPWM and reviews and provides guidance on the overall work plan of the GPWM and the progress made. 

For more information: http://www.unep.org/gpwm