The Geneva Environment Network’s weekly newsletter includes the latest information on the global environmental agenda, main eventsjob vacancies, learning opportunities, as well as other useful resources and updates. Stay tuned and follow us on X (Twitter)FacebookLinkedInInstagram, and Youtube, or visit our website regularly for additional updates.

Image of the week | UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, Prof. David Boyd, presenting the findings of his last report to the Human Rights Council at the side event “Business, Planetary Boundaries, and the Right to a Clean, Healthy and Sustainable Environment, on Tuesday 5 March 2024. The UN Special Rapporteur concluded, “We have to move away from systems that are blocking climate and environmental action. We must put Human Rights ahead of shareholder profits, communities ahead of businesses, and children ahead of CEOs.”

Environment @ 55th Session of the Human Rights Council

Advancing the human right to a clean, healthy, and sustainable environment is back on the agenda this week at the 55th session of the Human Rights Council (HRC55), with various events of interest:

Other environment-related side events, activities, and informal consultations on resolutions taking place this week include:

Press releases and other news:

 Regular updates on key environmental issues at HRC55, side events, and further resources will be made available on our dedicated HRC55 and the environment update.

Environment @ FIFDH 2024

In parallel with the Human Rights Council, the 2024 edition of the International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights (FIFDH) continues this week in Geneva, with various films and discussions that focus on the environment, climate change, rights of Indigenous Peoples, business and human rights, among others. Featured this week:

Tracking Progress on the Environment Rule of Law

The Global Launch of the report “Environmental Rule of Law: Tracking Progress and Charting Future Directions“, organized by the UN Environment Programme and the Geneva Environment Network, will take place at the International Environment House and online, on 12 March. The event, as part of a series of regional and thematic seminars organized by UNEP, will introduce the findings and recommendations of the report and facilitate discussions aimed at promoting and strengthening environmental rule of law. It will convene leading experts on environmental rule of law, including contributors to the Report, to encourage information sharing and in-depth discussions. → Register and join us on Tuesday 12 March 2024 from 10:00 to 11:30 CET at the International Environment House 1 or online.

Environment @ 2024 Regional Forum on Sustainable Development

The Regional Forum on Sustainable Development for the UNECE Region — a broadly recognized platform that brings together a growing number of actors and groups since 2017 — takes place in Geneva on 13 and 14 March 2024 under the theme: “Reinforcing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in the Economic Commission for Europe region in times of multiple crises: The effective delivery of sustainable, resilient and innovative solutions”. The Forum program includes five peer learning roundtables with particular interest to the environmental community, such as the one on SDG 13 Climate Action Solving the Rubik’s cube of the planetary crisis: lining up policy solutions for climate risks and biodiversity loss. The Forum is preceded by pre-meetings and side events on 11 and 12 March.

Four side events co-organized with the Geneva Environment Network:

Visit our page gathering information on the environment-related side events of the 2024 Regional Forum.

Preparing the Treaty to End Plastic Pollution

This week, a new Geneva Beat Plastic Pollution Dialogue will feature the launch and a panel discussion of the PlastChem Project flagship report, State of the Science on Plastic Chemicals: Identifying and Addressing Chemicals and Polymers of Concern, a high-quality, comprehensive state-of-the-science report synthesizing publicly available evidence to inform future-proof policy development that protects public health and the environment. Organized in the run-up to the fourth session of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee to develop an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution, including in the marine environment (INC-4), the event will provide a platform for stakeholders to discuss the latest state of science on plastic chemicals and polymers of concern and identify ways to address them. → Register and join us online Thursday 14 March 2024 from 14:00 to 15:30 CET

Other sessions of interest taking place this week include:

Recent news on plastics include:

 Regular updates on INC-4
 Regular updates on Plastics and the Environment

Enjoy a Green Spring in Geneva

While the blooming of the first bud of the Geneva Republic’s official chestnut tree officially announced the arrival of spring earlier this month, restaurants and bars started installing terraces, and new indoor and outdoor activities are being proposed by various institutions. From exhibitions and film screenings to creative workshops and outdoor activities, learn more about the environment, reencounter local wildlife, and explore nature trails for a “green” spring in Geneva, including this week:

  • Green Film Festival | Launched in 2006, the Green Film FestivalFestival du Film Vert – the only documentary festival dedicated to ecology and the environment in French-speaking Switzerland – has given itself the mission to propose a program of little-known films on current ecological subjects or cinematographic works dealing with less publicized subjects. The 19th edition is held from 2 March to 14 April 2024, with the City of Geneva journey of the festival kicking off on 12 March at 18:30 CET with an opening evening at the Geneva Museum of Ethnography. It will feature a line-up of over 20 films and various debates across two weeks. → Discover the programme of screenings taking place around Geneva from 12 to 28 March 2024.
  • Sustainability Week | Students from the University of Geneva and the Geneva Graduate Institute are joining the Sustainability Week initiative, a student-led initiative replicated in higher education institutions across Switzerland. Discover the rich programme of events taking place from 11 to 16 March at the University of Geneva and from 11 to 17 March at the Geneva Graduate Institute.

What (Else) to Read Next?

  • Buildings and Climate Global Forum – Declaration de Chaillot | UNEP | 8 March 2024
    The first Buildings and Climate Global Forum, organized by the French Government and UNEP, concluded last week with the adoption by representatives of 70 countries of the Declaration de Chaillot, a document that will enable progress towards a rapid, fair, and effective transition of the sector.
  • Cancer-causing PCB chemicals still being produced despite 40-year-old ban | The Guardian | 8 March 2024
    Industry could be producing more cancer-causing PCB chemicals today than at any other point in history, despite their production having been banned more than 40 years ago.
  • Global Status Report for Buildings and Construction | UNEP and Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction (GlobalABC) | 7 March 2024
    As outlined in this edition, the buildings and construction sector contributes significantly to global climate change, accounting for about 21 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions. In 2022, buildings were responsible for 34 per cent global energy demand and 37 per cent of energy and process-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. 
  • Lack of controls on climate engineering risks lasting damage, UN says | Financial Time | 6 March
    The UN’s top environmental agency chief has warned that a rush into experimental techniques to cool the atmosphere by partially blocking the sun risked harming wildlife, oceans, the ozone layer and crops, after a failure by governments to agree on how to control geoengineering.
  • Deep Seabed Mining. WWF’s Guide for Financial Institutions | WWF | March 2024
    This briefing for financial institutions includes: a background on why deep seabed mining (DSM) is risky and unacceptable; WWF’s recommendations on how financial institutions should develop a policy on deep seabed mining; an analysis made by Profundo for WWF, updated in November 2023, which provides a preliminary overview of the most relevant companies globally, serving as a basis for financial institutions to conduct further due diligence and start implementing the provided recommendations.
  • El Niño weakens but impacts continue | WMO | 5 March 2024
    The 2023-24 El Niño has peaked as one of the five strongest on record. It is now gradually weakening but it will continue to impact the global climate in the coming months, fuelling the heat trapped by greenhouse gases from human activities. Above normal temperatures are predicted over almost all land areas between March and May.
  • Equity assessment of global mitigation pathways in the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report | Tejal Kanitkar,Akhil Mythri & T. Jayaramanb | Climate Policy | 4 March 2024
    This paper analyses 556 model scenarios assessed by IPCC’s Working Group-III for the 6th Assessment Report, which have an underlying 10-region classification and correspond to restricting warming levels to 1.5 ℃ and 2 ℃. It shows that across all scenarios, the current global inequalities in incomes, energy use, and emissions, are projected to continue even in 2050.
  • Nouveau soutien financier “organisations et urgence climatique” | Ville de Genève | March 2024
    La Ville met à disposition un nouveau budget pour inciter l’ensemble des acteurs et actrices du territoire à réduire leurs émissions de gaz à effet de serre. Le soutien est destiné aux organisations ou structures (théâtre, club de sport, crèche, ONG, etc.) qui souhaitent modifier à moyen ou long-terme leur fonctionnement afin de le rendre plus durable.
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Afterwork

Sustainability Week 2024

11 – 16 Mar 2024

University of Geneva

UNIGE, Sustainability Week Switzerland

Afterwork

Sustainability Week IHEID 2024

11 – 17 Mar 2024

Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies

IHEID, Sustainability Week Switzerland

Cinema

Food, Inc. 2 | FIFDH 2024

13 Mar 2024 18:30

Espace Pitoëff - Théâtre - Grande Salle

FIFDH Foundation

Cinema

Tax Wars | FIFDH 2024

17 Mar 2024 17:00

Espace Pitoëff - Théâtre - Grande Salle

FIFDH Foundation

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Intern

Intern

14 Mar 2024

BRS

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02 Apr 2024

Ongoing Contests