2019 was an eventful year for the Asia-Europe Environment Forum (ENVforum)! It was a year filled with activities, new ventures, and most importantly, a year spent working towards the UN 2030 Agenda.
We kicked off 2019 with the 5th Regional Conference on SDGs Implementation “Measuring SDG12 Implementation Progress in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Viet Nam and the Philippines” that took place on 26-27 March 2019 in Luang Prabang, Lao PDR. The focus of the event is on the implementation of SDG12 and its challenges in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Viet Nam and the Philippines.
The conference also saw the launch of the publication entitled “Sustainable Consumption and Production in Lao PDR after the Voluntary National Review: Policy Options for Effective Implementation and Monitoring” which was the result of research which began in early 2018. The publication assesses the current state of affairs and gives policy recommendations for short- and long-term changes to the Lao PDR’s strategic plans across various ministries.
We closed the first half of the year with another publication launch on the sides of the World Circular Economy Forum 2019 on 5 June 2019 in Helsinki, Finland. The publication entitled “Closing the loop: ASEM’s transition towards achieving a circular economy” reviews the implementation experience of ASEM Partner countries with SDG 12 on Responsible Consumption and Production, providing a bird’s-eye view of how ASEM Partner countries approach the implementation of SDG 12 targets and integrate them into national strategies, target-setting, and monitoring activities.
The ENVforum then co-organised the 4th Global Research Forum on Sustainable Consumption and Production on 26-29 June 2019, in Hong Kong, China. The forum titled “Transforming Production and Consumption: Bridging Sustainability Research with Policy and Practice” brought together researchers and practitioners engaged in research on the worldwide transition to sustainable production and consumption systems. ENVforum organised a plenary session on the sustainable consumption and production of food, plastics, and textiles on 28 June 2019. The session included presentations on the outcomes from the ENVforum Annual Conference 2018 held in Warsaw, Poland.
The ENVforum Annual Conference 2019, ENVforum’s flagship event, was held from 29 to 30 July 2019 at the Pacifico Yokohama in Yokohama, Japan. The topic for this year’s conference was “The Role of Consumers in Triggering Change in Consumption & Production”, where various stakeholders from civil society organisations, governments, and businesses came together to discuss the role of the consumer in ensuring sustainable consumption and production (SCP), as part of Sustainable Development Goal 12 (SDG 12).
This conference is a follow-up from last year’s conference, which was focused on working towards a circular economy. This conference also touched on health priorities when ensuring SCP, where experts discussed the future of food, with a special focus on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) and a sustainable lifestyle. This was the first time ENVforum brought in issues related to health, a topic that affects the global population, regardless of socio-economic status.
The ENVforum continued its contribution to the Sustainable Development Transformation Forum (SDTF) as a knowledge partner, bringing experts on sustainable development and presenting outcomes of ENVforum research on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). SDTF 2019 titled “How Can We Achieve Transformations Needed?” held on 22-24 October 2019 in Incheon, Korea focused centrally on what it will take to achieve the fundamental transformations in energy, industrial, food and other systems needed to shift courses from a Business-as-Usual path.
Finally, we wrapped up the year with the accomplishment of hosting 5 side-events at the 25th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP25) which took place in Madrid, Spain, from 2-13 December 2019. The events covered a wide range of topics, including reducing the use of plastics, low carbon development, and climate change ambition for youth. The events saw more than 150 attendees from around the world, and the ENVforum was able to showcase our work done among ASEM Partners, including our contributions towards achieving the SDGs, including climate change. Not only was ASEF represented at this major international platform, but our presence also put ASEF on the map, giving us the reputation of contributing as an inter-government organisation on the global stage.
We look forward to being able to continue our efforts in the UN 2030 Agenda this year, even as we battle COVID-19 together.
For more information on our upcoming events, visit our website here .
For the full 2019 report, click on this link here .