Fifth session of the United Nations Environment Assembly

The overall theme of UNEA-5 is “Strengthening Actions for Nature to Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals”.

The theme calls for strengthened action to protect and restore nature and the nature-based solutions to achieve the SDGs in its three complementary dimensions (social, economic and environmental). UNEA-5 provides Member States and stakeholders with a platform for sharing and implementing successful approaches that contribute to the achievement of the environmental dimension of the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs, including the goals related to the eradication of poverty and sustainable patterns of consumption and production. UNEA-5 will also provide an opportunity for Member States and Stakeholders to take ambitious steps towards building back better and greener by ensuring that investments in economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic contribute to sustainable development.

In light of the restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, and based on broad consultations with the UNEA Bureau, Member States and Stakeholders, the fifth session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-5), it has been decided that UNEA-5 should take place in a two-step approach.

The first session of UNEA-5 (UNEA-5.1) was held online on 22-23 February 2021 with a revised and streamlined agenda that focused on urgent and procedural decisions. UNEA-5.1 was prepared at the fifth meeting of the Open-Ended Meeting of the Committee of Permanent Representatives, which was organized online on 15-16 February 2021. Click here to read about the outcomes of UNEA-5.1.

Substantive matters that require in-depth negotiations will be deferred to a resumed in-person session of UNEA-5 on 28 February – 2 March 2022 (UNEA-5.2).

UNEA-5.2 will be followed by a Special Session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-SS), to be held 3-4 March 2022, which will be devoted to commemorate of the 50th anniversary of the creation of UNEP in 1972.   

UNEA-5 is an opportunity for Member States to share best practices for sustainability. It will create a momentum for governments to build back better after the COVID-19 pandemic through green and sustainable recovery plans.

The President of the UN Environment Assembly, in close cooperation with UNEA Bureau and the Committee of Permanent Representatives and its Bureau will continue to work in an open and participatory manner to ensure a successful and impactful two-step UNEA-5.

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