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Ministers of the Environment of Latin America and the Caribbean will discuss the main challenges in the region and urgent actions in favor of nature and sustainable recovery in a virtual forum in Bridgetown, Barbados.
Organized by the Government of Barbados and the Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), the meeting will also address issues such as the transition to a circular economy and the closure schedule of open dumps, and air pollution.
These will be joined by climate action, environmental justice and governance, gender and environment linkages, sustainable development of small island developing states, and the importance of building back better and more sustainably in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The program for the two-day meeting highlights the high-level segment, where ministers will discuss the environmental dimension of sustainable development recovery and a panel on the role of nature and ecosystem restoration.
As countries around the world prepare their recovery plans, we are entering a crucial decade in which we must make a final push to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, the Paris Agreement, and a new and ambitious biodiversity framework, says Leo Heileman, UNEP's regional director for Latin America and the Caribbean, in a statement.
For the Minister of Environment and National Beautification of Barbados, Adrian Forde, the pandemic shows that our ecosystems' balance is affected by the way we use our natural resources.
La lucha contra la #COVID19 ha exacerbado grandes desafíos de América Latina y el Caribe: desigualdad, débiles sistemas de salud y degradación ambiental.
"We still have time to build a sustainable future for Latin America and the Caribbean, and I call on the region's ministers to support the bold commitments we need to ensure just that," he warned.
Considered the oldest area of cooperation for environmental authorities in the region, the meeting of Ministers of Environment of Latin America and the Caribbean was established in 1982.
Cuba will participate in the UN's virtual environmental forum to analyze issues such as the circular economy, renewable energy sources, the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, the dumping of waste into the seas, and sustainable development.