Organization of American States Summits of the Americas
Follow-up and Implementation: Mandates

ENVIRONMENT: Environmental Management

  1. To advance the Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration on Forest and Land Use, national deforestation and conservation commitments, and regional efforts to halt and reverse deforestation and conserve, sustainably manage, and use ecosystems, we commit to strengthen our efforts to:

    • a. Work, with the support of regional and subregional organizations, to stimulate sustainable development and promote equal opportunity for populations affected by climate change, including indigenous peoples and local communities, respecting, preserving, and maintaining knowledge, innovations, and practices embodying traditional lifestyles relevant for the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, subject to domestic legislation;

    • b. Develop national plans and new initiatives, as appropriate, with the participation of civil society, the private sector, and other stakeholders, to halt and reverse forest loss and land degradation and to conserve or protect 30 percent of lands and waters by 2030 (30x30), aligned with each country’s nationally determined contribution (NDC) and net zero emissions target, as applicable;

    • c. Adopt, as appropriate, national initiatives to halt and reverse forest loss and land degradation, which includes the protection of biodiversity and ecosystems, implementing more ambitious actions in keeping with science and the goal of pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels;

    • d. Strengthen the role of all stakeholders in the agricultural sector in international and national climate efforts, and invite them to present their recommendations at a meeting of ministers of agriculture of the Americas before the 27th Conference of the Parties (COP27), to be organized by the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture;

    • e. Cooperate, as appropriate, including in digital formats, in investigating, developing, and applying biotechnologies that contribute to the conservation, restoration, and promotion of sustainable use of biodiversity, while respecting relevant domestic legislation governing access to genetic resources and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of their utilization;

    • f. Strengthen the protection of human rights defenders, particularly indigenous peoples and local communities working on environmental matters, in collaboration with stakeholders, to draw up and approve plans by the Tenth Summit of the Americas to: 1) respond to and collect information from environmental defenders about threats or incidences of violence, in keeping with domestic legislation; 2) enact, as appropriate, and enforce laws to protect human rights defenders working on environmental matters and the resources they defend; and 3) carry out and implement environmental assessments, according to existing domestic legislation;

    • g. Encourage scientific cooperation and step up investigation to increase knowledge and understanding of the importance of forest areas for preserving ecosystems that interact on the planet. Promote educational campaigns and programs to disseminate information regarding preservation of the environment and forest ecosystems and thereby make all peoples in the Americas familiar with these issues;

    • h. Achieve significant increases in finance and investments from a wide variety of public and private, and international cooperation sources to enhance sustainable forest management, forest conservation and restoration, and support for Indigenous peoples and local communities. (Our Sustainable Green Future, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. To decrease the amount of greenhouse gas emissions released into the atmosphere from agricultural, forestry, mining, and other land-use sectors, we commit to:

    • a. Promote policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, strengthen the adaptation and resilience of the agricultural sector to climate change, and enhance food security, as well as the development of sustainable agricultural practices that prioritize the health and wellbeing of local communities and stakeholders;

    • b. Seek to increase aggregate public investment in agricultural innovation for climate-smart agriculture and food systems over the next five years, including with the support of the private sector and multilateral mechanisms;

    • c. Pursue policies and develop mechanisms to improve the sustainable use and management of chemicals and technological practices, to promote the development of sustainable agriculture practices that maintain productivity and food security, and avoid negative impacts on local communities, rural producers, and consumers, and that support healthy terrestrial ecosystems, water systems, and the health of human populations and of fauna and flora in general;

    • d. Support indigenous peoples, farmers, and/or other people working and living in rural communities in strengthening their capacities to improve adaptation and mitigation, to counter the consequences of climate change, fostering actions to reduce emissions, promoting actions that have a beneficial impact on ecosystems, and promoting climatesmart and sustainable farming;

    • e. Promote environmental justice, protection, and conservation, and prevention of environmental degradation in our communities, in keeping with domestic legislation;

    • f. Sustainably use and foster the conservation and restoration of ecosystems, including those with high capacity of carbon capture and storage, such as wetlands, moorlands, grasslands, mangroves, secondary forests, and tropical forests and in general terrestrial, marine, and coastal ecosystems, in consultation with stakeholders;

    • g. Promote policies and actions that contribute to the implementation of sustainable solutions, such as nature-based solutions, ecosystem-based approaches, and other management and conservation approaches, pursuing efforts to limit the increase in average global temperature to 1.5oC with the support of countries and relevant institutions;

    • h. Promote economic recovery, in a socially inclusive manner, fostering low greenhouse gas emitting economies, with a view to conserving, managing, and ensuring sustainable use of natural resources with key actors implementing joint synergies among countries in the region. (Our Sustainable Green Future, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. To harness the role of oceans and other bodies of water to mitigate and adapt to climate change and to contribute to global efforts to combat plastic pollution, we commit to:

    • a. Coordinate efforts and facilitate exchanges among governments and stakeholders to support the environmentally-sound management of plastic waste to take action against plastic pollution and the discharging of plastic into oceans, and welcoming the process launched at the resumed fifth session of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA-5.2) to negotiate a legally-binding international instrument on plastic pollution, including in the marine environment;

    • b. Reduce plastic pollution by promoting sustainable consumption and production, as well as environmentally-sound practices such as, circular economy and waste management solutions, and supporting strong stakeholder engagement, including from populations in situations of vulnerability;

    • c. Foster the implementation of pathways, including in the International Maritime Organization, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, inter alia, by establishing green corridors that use cleaner fuels and collaborating on reducing greenhouse gas emissions of regional sea ports;

    • d. Strive to conserve, protect, and restore coastal ecosystems, such as mangroves, salt marshes, seagrass beds, and river grass beds that function as sinks and reservoirs of greenhouse gas emissions, thereby helping to capture and store carbon as an ecosystemic service for oceans;

    • e. Engage and actively participate in the ocean-climate change dialogue within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) framework to promote adaptation and mitigation actions. (Our Sustainable Green Future, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. To accelerate measures on climate change adaptation, taking into account different national circumstances, we intend to:

    • a. Continue to scale up and enhance finance and investments in climate action from a wide variety of sources and to work towards enhancing capacity to access and benefit from these investments and finance flows, particularly by the most vulnerable countries;

    • b. Support the implementation of climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies in all States, particularly in developing countries and with consideration for the particular vulnerabilities of small island developing states, by enhancing opportunities for training to strengthen adaptation capacities and climate resilience across the Hemisphere, through cooperation among States and the work of the Joint Summit Working Group institutions, and report on these efforts through the Summit Implementation Review Group;

    • c. Enhance environmental education, through research and active and inclusive participation from all stakeholders to build capacities for climate change adaptation and mitigation for current and future generations, including youth, indigenous peoples, persons of African descent, civil society, women’s organizations, the private sector, policymakers, practitioners, and persons working in related industries;

    • d. Redouble efforts to incorporate climate risks in plans, policies, operations, and sectoral budgets in order to generate resilience in strategic sectors and reduce vulnerability to climate change;

    • e. Develop efficient, transparent, exact, coherent, and comparable systems for monitoring and evaluating climate change adaptation and mitigation actions;

    • f. Enhance and promote delivery of climate information services, decision-making support tools, and early warning systems to improve understanding and response to climate impacts and minimize loss and damage associated with the adverse effects of climate change across sectors and different scales. (Our Sustainable Green Future, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. To strengthen and integrate regional cooperation networks to assist governments and for the building of resilience by means of using appropriate methodologies to:

    • a. Assess risk to mitigate and reduce the destructive impacts of disasters caused by earthquakes, droughts, hurricanes, storms, floods, and sea-level rise, among others;

    • b. Assess the efficacy of adaptation measures;

    • c. Monitor in real time emergency disaster preparedness. (Our Sustainable Green Future, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. To promote responsible production and consumption patterns, consistent with domestic laws, through the strengthening of government procurement systems and the inclusion of sustainability criteria, as appropriate, in the procurement of goods, services, and public works; as well as through the promotion of initiatives to strengthen market capacities that reduce adverse effects on the environment. (Our Sustainable Green Future, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. Support and promote cooperation to increase the share of all forms and types of renewable energy in the countries of the Americas, according to their national strategies, including wind, solar, offshore wind, bioenergy, geothermal, hydroelectricity, and other low-carbon emissions energy, particularly in the electric, industrial, transportation, and housing sectors, along with carbon capture, storage, and removal technologies, and emission abatement mechanisms, as well as low carbon hydrogen that may contribute to achieving net zero emissions by 2050. (Accelerating the Clean, Sustainable, Renewable, and Just Energy Transition, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. Advance sustainable, sustained, and responsible mining sector governance principles, particularly for those minerals and metals powering the energy transition and secure the integration of mineral supply chains within our Hemisphere. (Accelerating the Clean, Sustainable, Renewable, and Just Energy Transition, IX Summit of the Americas, Los Angeles, 2022).

  1. We recognise that social and economic development and protection of the environment, including the sustainable management of natural resources, are mutually reinforcing, interdependent pillars of sustainable development. We therefore reaffirm our strong commitment to sustainable development, as set out in the 1992 Rio de Janeiro Declaration on Environment and Development, the 1994 Barbados Programme of Action (BPOA), the 1996 Declaración de Santa Cruz de la Sierra, the 2002 Johannesburg Declaration on Sustainable Development, the 2005 Mauritius Strategy for the implementation of the BPOA, the 2006 Declaration of Santa Cruz + 10 and the objectives of the United Nations Millennium Declaration. (Declaration of Port of Spain, 2009).

  1. We acknowledge the challenge of environmental management in the Hemisphere. We commit our governments to strengthen environmental protection and sustainable use of natural resources with a view to ensuring a balance among economic development, social development and the protection of the environment, as these are interdependent and mutually reinforcing. Our goal is to achieve sustainable development throughout the Hemisphere (Declaration of Québec, 2001).

  1. Reaffirm our commitments to implement Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) to which we are party, including through enactment and effective enforcement of any necessary domestic laws, reiterating common and differentiated responsibilities as set forth in Principle 7 of the1992 Rio Declaration on Environment and Development and taking into account the needs and concerns of small developing countries and noting, in this context, the recently concluded Global Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants; also stress the need to build synergies among MEAs to enhance their effectiveness in implementation and to strengthen international cooperation;(Plan of Action Québec, 2001).

  1. Promote the adoption, implementation and enforcement of national legislation , regulations, standards and policies that provide for high levels of environmental protection , recognizing the right of each country to set its own levels of environmental protection and, to this end, reinforce cooperative partnerships, placing particular emphasis on achieving cleaner air, enhancing access to safe water and sanitation services, and strengthening national and regional capacities for integrated water resources management and for waste management;(Plan of Action Québec, 2001).

  1. Promote improved environmental management at the municipal level, including through information exchange among local communities, the development of environmentally sound technology and the promotion of partnerships to facilitate, as appropriate, technology transfer, capacity building, including the strengthening of local institutions and services, and support for initiatives such as the World Bank Clean Air Initiative and IDB programs in this area;(Plan of Action Québec, 2001).

  1. Promote the development of environmentally sound exploitation and management of minerals and metals, recognizing the importance of the social and economic dimensions of the activities of the mining sector, and support the work of regional and international fora in this area; (Plan of Action Québec, 2001).

  1. We, the elected Heads of State and Government of the Americas, gathered in Santa Cruz de la Sierra as decided at the Summit of the Americas held in Miami in 1994, reaffirm our determination to move forward toward sustainable development and to implement the decisions and commitments set forth in the Rio Declaration and Agenda 21, which were adopted at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992.
    We also reaffirm the commitments undertaken in the Declaration of Principles and the Plan of Action of the Summit of the Americas.

    We undertake to promote the agreements reached at the Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, held in Barbados in 1994, and recognize the importance of the principles enunciated at recent United Nations conferences concerning sustainable development.
    We support the efforts launched at the hemispheric, regional, and subregional levels, such as the Central American Alliance for Sustainable Development, the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation, the Treaty for Amazonian Cooperation, and the Permanent South Pacific Commission.(Declaración de Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996, 1996).

  1. We reaffirm that human beings are entitled to a healthy and productive life in harmony with nature and, as such, are the focus of sustainable development concerns. Development strategies need to include sustainability as an essential requirement for the balanced, interdependent, and integral attainment of economic, social, and environmental goals. (Declaración de Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996, 1996).

  • Initiative20. Cooperate in the development of policies and comprehensive strategies for achieving sustainable forest management, bilaterally and through programs such as the International Model Forest Network, as well as consider ways and means to address the critical areas related to the transfer and development of environmentally sound technology, on favorable terms as mutually agreed. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative21. Support criteria and indicators at the regional, subregional, and national levels as mechanisms for assessing progress toward sustainable forest management. Continue to participate, as appropriate, in the ongoing initiatives relating to the development of criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management, such as the Tarapoto and Montreal processes. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative25. Promote, as appropriate and in accordance with existing legislation and agreements, and with appropriate input from local stakeholders, the identification of cross-border protected areas and national parks which the respective neighboring countries consider to be critical sites for biodiversity conservation. Further, promote cooperation among those countries with a view to improving the sustainable management of those areas. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative28. Consider, in accordance with the terms of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, ways and means for the effective protection and use of traditional knowledge, innovations, and practices of indigenous people and other local communities relevant to the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, as well as for fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from such knowledge, innovations, and practices. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative42. Develop a hemispheric framework for the exchange of information on and experiences in successful pollution prevention and waste treatment efforts as an appropriate means of managing the environment so as to support national policies in these areas. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative43. Promote the exchange of information and experiences among the mayors of the Hemisphere on the most appropriate practices for urban environmental stewardship, promotion of non-polluting consumer practices, sustainable transportation, environmental impact, and sewage treatment. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • II.4. Water Resources and Coastal Areas
    Recognizing that the primary challenges to the attainment of sustainable development in this area include:

    • Assurance and improvement of the conservation, sustainable management and utilization of water resources, including the development of integrated programs and institutional capacity;
    • Prevention of the contamination of water resources and assurance that drinking water supplies are safe and adequate;
    • Promotion of cooperation among countries at bilateral, subregional, regional, and hemispheric levels on water resources issues;
    • Promotion of user participation in the decision-making process on water resources management;
    • Conservation and utilization, in a sustainable manner, of inland, coastal, and marine water resources, including wetlands, in the region;
    • Promotion of the integrated management and sustainable development of the marine environment and coastal areas; and
    • Prevention and control of environmental degradation caused by pollution and the unsustainable use of inland, coastal, and marine water resources that threaten human health and the economic viability and environmental integrity of these resources,
    Taking into consideration the social, economic, and environmental value of inland, coastal, and marine water resources, the Governments will carry out the following initiatives (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • Initiative49. Develop, strengthen, implement, and coordinate at the national or local level, as appropriate, water resources policies, laws, and regulations to ensure the protection and conservation of water resources. (Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996).

  • III.15. Cooperate in the establishment of a hemispheric network of officials and experts in environmental law, enforcement, and compliance in coordination with the OAS to facilitate the sharing of knowledge and experiences and to provide a focal point, as appropriate, for carrying out cooperative efforts to strengthen laws, regulations, and implementation, as well as training in these areas for those states seeking such assistance, taking into account the studies prepared by the Inter-American Juridical Committee..(Plan of Action Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 1996)

  1. Social progress and economic prosperity can be sustained only if our people live in a healthy environment and our ecosystems and natural resources are managed carefully and responsibly. To advance and implement the commitments made at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, held in Rio de Janeiro, and the 1994 Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, held in Barbados, we will create cooperative partnerships to strengthen our capacity to prevent and control pollution, to protect ecosystems and use our biological resources on a sustainable basis, and to encourage clean, efficient and sustainable energy production and use. To benefit future generations through environmental conservation, including the rational use of our ecosystems, natural resources and biological heritage, we will continue to pursue technological, financial and other forms of cooperation (Declaration of Principles Miami, 1994).

  1. We will advance our social well-being and economic prosperity in ways that are fully cognizant of our impact on the environment. We agree to support the Central American Alliance for Sustainable Development, which seeks to strengthen those democracies by promoting regional economic and social prosperity and sound environmental management. In this context, we support the convening of other regional meetings on sustainable development (Declaration of Principles Miami, 1994).

  • 22.1 Our Hemisphere contains over half the world's biodiversity. To sustain the Hemisphere's social and economic development, we must intensify efforts to understand, assess, and sustainably use this living resource base. We must act now to increase the technical and management capacity and public awareness of national and international efforts in this area. Agenda 2l, the Convention on Biological Diversity, and other related international instruments recognize these needs and call for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity resources. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 22.6 Develop national plans and programs to establish and strengthen the management of parks and reserves, seeking links to economic, social, and ecological benefits for local people. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 22.9 Increase support of training and education initiatives addressing sustainable use of biodiversity resources and foster activities by universities, non-governmental actors and organizations and the private sector to assist in the training of managers and to empower local communities. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 23.1 As recognized in Agenda 21, sound environmental management is an essential element of sustainable development. Cooperative efforts are needed to develop or improve, in accordance with national legislation and relevant international instruments: (1) frameworks for environment protection; and (2) mechanisms for implementing and enforcing environmental regulations. To achieve this goal, a new partnership will promote cooperative activities for developing environmental policies, laws, and institutions; increasing technical capacity; promoting public awareness and public participation; continuing to pursue technological, financial and other forms of cooperation; and facilitating information exchange, including on environmentally sound technologies. The activities of the partnership will build on and advance the implementation of international agreements and principles including those agreed to at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development and the 1994 Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, in areas identified as priorities by countries of the Hemisphere. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 23.2 Strengthen and build technical and institutional capacity to address environmental priorities such as pesticides, lead contamination, pollution prevention, risk reduction, waste and sanitation issues, improved water and air quality, access to safe drinking water, urban environmental problems, and to promote public participation and awareness. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).

  • 23.6 Support democratic governmental mechanisms to engage public participation, particularly from members of indigenous and other affected communities, in the consideration of policies regarding the environmental impact of development projects and the design and enforcement of environmental laws. (Plan of Action Miami, 1994).



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