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Conference Program

Tuesday, 12 April 2005

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Panel 3 - Enforcement Initatives: Stories of Success
Bill ClarkModerator: Ken Cook, Environmental Working Group

Bill Clark from International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) demonstrated that INECE's principles of raising awareness, developing networks for enforcement cooperation, and building capacity are key to the prevention of the trade in illegal contraband wildlife products. (Draft Summary)

Tony OposaAntonio Oposa from the Philippines demonstrated the power of locally based action, in preserving the rich biodiversity of the coral reefs located in the Visayan Sea. Using local resources, Oposa shut down local illegal blast fishing and cyanide fishing operations and has set up a program to empower and educate youth to takeresponsibility for the future of their natural environment, as well as to help local governments establish marine sanctuaries and undertake marine surveys. The program promotes the three "E's" of environmental stewardship: Education, Engineering (Social, Physical, Legal, and Financial), and Enforcement, leading to Conservation, Protection, and Restoration (CPR). These successes are due to networks and inter-agency cooperation based on INECE's three key goals. (Draft Summary)

Justice Adel Omar SherifJustice Adel Omar Sherif of Egypt emphasized that, for countries to be part of the civilized world today, they haveto respect all human rights including the right to the environment. Collaborating with UNEP and the Supreme Court of Egypt, a union of judges focusing on the environment has been established. Support for judges has come from UNEP and the Egyptian government with the goal of establishing a global center for training of judges. Working with partner organizations in Europe and elsewhere to develop the program and its materials, the goal is to help judges in the region and the wider developing world to understand the environmental challenges we face, and to build a world that is cleaner, more peaceful, and more democratic. (Draft Summary)

Walker SmithWalker Smith of U.S. EPA discussed the important role that enforcement initiatives play, particularly if an entire sector is out of compliance. Drawing on key examples, the importance of collaborating with non-governmental organizations on the sharing of information, networking, and capacity building (the INECE goals) was emphasized. New EPA initiatives have been employed focusing on flexible controls and open dialogue with industry sectors (such as the petroleum sector), as opposed to the traditional EPA approach of prosecuting non-compliant industry activity. Initiatives can help change perceptions among, and the behavior of, larger industry sectors. Building on initial experiences with petroleum refineries, the EPA's focus on collaborating with industry and establishing clear priorities has proven effective. Also, use of the internet to publish data and information about ongoing compliance and enforcement activities has helped raise awareness and has brought industry to the table to discuss solutions. (Draft Summary)

To summarize, the panel highlighted some practical stories of success through the use of enforcement mechanisms. INECE has helped facilitate these successes through its three key goals of: 1) raising awareness of compliance and enforcement; 2) developing networks for enforcement cooperation; and 3) strengthening capacity to implement and enforce environmental requirements. The stories and practical examples described demonstrate that enforcement initiatives are actually about protecting our collective future and preserving the environment for future generations. All panelists emphasized the importance of raising awareness, networking, and capacity building to ensure successful compliance and enforcement action. " In 5th sentence, add comma after "NGOs" and change final clause to: " in facilitating effective enforcement and in ensuring that successes and any "Eco-Hero" stories are communicated to a wider audience. The judiciary, government agencies, NGOs and communities all have special roles to play in facilitating effective enforcement and ensuring those successes and that any "Eco-Hero" stories are communicated to a wider audience. (Draft Summary)