UNEA3 ends with a multitude of pledges – what does this mean?

Curtains finally fell on #UNEA3, the 3rd United Nations Environmental Assembly last Wednesday, following almost 2.5 million pledges from governments, civil society, businesses, and individuals.

Resolutions can be passed and pledges made, but the onus is on an enabling policy environment and more so, implementation. Having interacted with organisations that are out there to promote sustainability solutions, I have realised that what drives individual responsibility has a lot to do with the background. That does not dismiss the fact that this can be acquired and adopted.

Truth be told, whatever is learnt or inculcated in a curriculum early enough, stands beneficial and is more believable. What if environmental protection was a subject of its own in our primary school curriculum? Would our oceans be chocked of pollution and air infiltrated by pathogens? Knowledge is power I believe the reverse would be true. Imagine a whole unit on marine protection with virtual reality as learning aids.  I bet such meetings as the one held last week, would not be required.

Growing up with such knowledge would bring out of all of us good stewards of nature and I bet Dandora dumpsite, for example, would only be a site out of sight.

#UNEA3 saw passing of well thought through deliberations that are indeed well-meaning for our mother earth. If every promise made in and around the summit is met, 1.49 billion more people will breathe clean air, 480,000 km (or around 30 percent) of the world’s coastlines will be cleaner, and USD 18.6 billion for research and development and innovative programmes to combat pollution will come online.

It is now a wait and see on implementation.



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