GGGI participated in the Clean Pacific Roundtable organized by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Program, held in Suva, Fiji from August 20 – 22, 2018. The roundtable this year focused on marine litter in the Pacific region. The session was opened by the Prime Minister of Fiji, His Excellency Frank Bainimarama. The Prime Minister highlighted the government’s initiatives such as the environment and climate adaptation levy placed on plastic bags and his commitment to the environment and promotion of circular economies in the region, especially as the President of COP23 this year.
GGGI’s Green Cities Analyst Aarsi Sagar participated in the plenary session and spoke about waste management and its impact on ecosystem-based adaptation, as well as its linkages to achieving NDCs with a focus on the waste sector in the region. Aarsi specifically highlighted GGGI’s work in Fiji, Vanuatu and Kiribati. In addressing the waste value chain, her presentation also touched on the importance of circular economies in the Pacific context. The details of the roundtable can be found at this link.
The expected outcomes of the roundtable were: timely implementation of agreed action plan in the Cleaner Pacific 2025 document; a better understanding of the gaps and opportunities to mobilize technical and financial resources; establish and facilitate regional networks in the waste and pollution sector; formal organization of the Clean Pacific Roundtable with supporting technical working groups; and a resolution/state of future prioritized activities based on information from the roundtable.
In addition, GGGI staff Aarsi Sagar and Anna Schulz, Climate Diplomacy Specialist, participated in a beach clean up at Suva Point in Fiji associated with the event. The purpose of this cleanup was to learn data monitoring techniques using an app developed by the Tangaroa Blue Foundation. In the longer term, the data entered in the app should help identify the sources of the waste coming into the region, and address waste minimization and substitution.
GGGI’s Green Cities team looks forward to working further with SPREP on waste and other issues in the future, through the Memorandum of Understanding signed earlier this week with GGGI. Click here for more information on the new MOU.