Environmental Justice Program 2011-2013

Published on Saturday, 15 March 2014

ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE PROGRAM 2011-2013
OGC LAW, JUSTICE AND DEVELOPMENT TEAM’S INPUTS

 

1. ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE PROGRAM

The OGC’s Environmental Justice Program under its Law, Justice and Development (LJD) program is in line with ADB’s long-term strategic framework1 which aims to (i) strengthen environmental regulatory frameworks and enforcement capacities of public institutions, recognizing good governance and capacity development as drivers of change; and (ii) promote regional cooperation. The program is also in line with ADB’s strategy for operational work on the environment from 2013 to 2020,2 which identifies environmental governance and natural capital as two of ADB’s four operational directions to promote transition to green growth.

Environmental governance involves the development and strengthening of rule of law systems that deliver environmental justice. Natural capital refers to the “elements of nature, including ecosystems and biodiversity that produce value to people.”3 To be effective, environmental governance requires an effective environmental enforcement chain.

The judiciary plays a key role in influencing the legal system and environmental enforcement within its jurisdiction by (i) shaping normative interpretations of legal and regulatory frameworks; (ii) issuing precedent-setting decisions, rules, and directions that affect lower courts’ priorities and manner of adjudication; and (iii) shaping judicial education. Such influence affects not only the courts but also the overall perceptions of natural capital issues, and the rule of law in a country, and hence, influences private sector investment in related sectors. In addition, since effective judicial participation in ensuring environmental justice and the rule of law also depends on other stakeholders doing their part in promoting environmental governance, strengthening judicial capacity also requires supporting other stakeholders responsible for environmental governance. Equally, in ensuring environmental justice, there is a need to manage the demand side by shoring up civil society, which plays an important role in sustaining natural capital and making justice accessible to the poor through its work in legal rights awareness.
Thus, a significant part of the initial environmental justice program work involves promoting the role of judges in the preservation and protection of natural capital, focusing on building judicial capacity and sharing knowledge on environmental adjudication and governance through the establishment of regional and sub-regional networks in Asia. In the long-term, however, the program will broaden its work to include the entire environmental enforcement chain.

2. OVERALL PROGRESS/ACCOMPLISHMENTS UNDER THE PROGRAM AND RELATED INITIATIVES (E.G. TAS, CONFERENCES)

  • Overall, ADB has made significant progress since it organized the Asian Judges Symposium on Environment in July 2010 in Manila. During that symposium, the participants called for an Asian Judges Network on the Environment – a more permanent framework of judicial cooperation – and from this idea grew various ongoing and evolving partnerships.
  • ADB has then supported the creation of the ASEAN Chief Justices’ Roundtable on Environment in partnership with the Chief Justices from the region. This Roundtable has been held in Jakarta, Indonesia; Melaka, Malaysia; and Bangkok, Thailand. These events resulted to the Common Vision on Environment for ASEAN Judiciaries, which underscores the critical role of ASEAN judiciaries as champions of the rule of law and environmental justice, and urges regional collaboration in developing environmental jurisprudence. Further steps were taken in Bangkok in November 2013 to implement this Vision, and ADB looks forward to continuing to support this initiative. Similarly, in South Asia, ADB has supported the convening of the South Asia Conferences on Environmental Justice. These conferences were hosted by the Chief Justices of Pakistan and Bhutan, which led to the Bhurban Declaration and the Thimpu Declaration on Enhancing Environmental Justice.
  • The ASEAN Roundtables and the South Asia Conferences are significant in charting a regional Vision for Asian judiciaries to address the region’s environmental challenges, and in spurring concrete national commitments to advance the role of the judiciary in protecting the environment and promoting the rule of law within their respective jurisdiction.
  • Concrete progress to date includes the establishment of an on-line platform for all Asian judiciaries to communicate important environment decisions. The site, http://www.asianjudges.org/, contains useful resources from the events and aims to cull the region’s environmental laws and other materials that could help strengthen judicial capacity to decide environmental cases.
  • ADB has also supported the participation of Asian justices in important international environmental conferences, such as the Rio+20 conference and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). The presence of the judges in these events demonstrates the importance of the rule of law and the role of judges in enforcing national and international environmental laws.
  • The details of this progress are described in the following TAs and initiatives:

RETA 7474 – Strengthening of Judicial Capacity to Adjudicate Upon Environmental Laws and Regulations

    • This TA, signed in 2009, builds on previous work of ADB in capacity building for environmental law and on development partners’ initiatives in strengthening environmental compliance and enforcement. Under this TA, ADB will conduct a broad study of the experience of environmental courts, benches, and tribunals and
    • their jurisprudence in selected DMCs in the region to provide information about how these countries establish and/or strengthen environmental tribunals and develop environmental jurisprudence, and to determine how judges can more effectively adjudicate environment and natural resource cases. ADB will also conduct a regional symposium among judges, prosecutors, public interest lawyers, environment agency officials, academics, environmental lawyers in Asia and ADB’s developed member countries to identify capacity strengthening needs of environmental courts and the judiciary in ADB’s DMCs.
    • Regional Symposium. On 28-29 July 2010, ADB and United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) held the Asian Judges Symposium on Environmental Decision Making, the Rule of Law, and Environmental Justice, in Manila. The symposium gathered about 120 chief justices, senior judges, and environment ministry officials from the region to consider how judicial capacity for environmental enforcement can be strengthened. The delegates proposed an Asian Judges Network on Environment (AJNE) to help improve the quality of court rulings on environment and natural resource cases, and achieve effective enforcement of environmental law in the region. The network will be supported by two sub-regional groups: the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). During the symposium, the chief justice of Pakistan, through his representatives, offered to host a regional roundtable for SAARC chief justices to continue the momentum for environmental enforcement. The chief justice of Indonesia made a similar offer for ASEAN countries.
    • Study on Strengthening Judicial Capacity to Adjudicate upon Environmental Rules and Regulations. Drafts of the study, covering the Philippines, Indonesia, and Thailand have been completed, have gone through several reviews, and are being finalized for publication. The studies look at various aspects of environmental adjudication in each country, such as, the strengths and weaknesses of environmental courts and tribunals; qualifications of environment court judges; linkages to environmental agencies and training institutes; use of expert witnesses; use of alternative dispute resolution; and trends in environmental jurisprudence.

(ii) RETA 7735 – Building Capacity for Environmental Prosecution, Adjudication, Dispute Resolution, Compliance, and Enforcement in Asia

    • TA 7735, originally signed in 2010 and broadened in scope in November 2013, aims at improving the implementation of environmental law in selected DMCs by developing a roadmap for institutionalizing a system for strengthening capacity of judges to apply environmental law and regulations, and effectively adjudicate environmental cases.
    • As part of this TA, a regional symposium and five sub-regional roundtables aimed at increasing knowledge of enforcement and adjudication through a judicial network and sharing of good practices were held during this period. In addition, the TA enabled the ADB to provide support to national-level initiatives in selected DMCs based on country needs, their commitment to strengthening environmental adjudication and enforcement, and assistance already provided by other development partners. Specifically, this TA supported the following important activities:
      • Second Asian Judges Symposium on Environment: Natural Capital and the Rule of Law, 2-5 December 2013, Manila, Philippines. The symposium convened chief justices, senior judges, enforcement officers, legal professionals, and civil society participants to discuss, among others: (i) the concept of natural capital and the value of ecosystem services from the perspectives of economics, ecology, and law; (ii) green benches, special rules for environmental cases, and other judicial innovations in deciding environmental cases; (iii) the state of natural capital in Asia and various environmental challenges, including biodiversity loss, illegal wildlife trade, encroachment; and (iv) the conduct of environmental impact assessments and climate change litigation. The symposium also launched the Asian Judges Network on Environment website, which shall be a repository of national laws on environment and related materials that can be used by judges in their environmental adjudication work.
      • Inaugural ASEAN Chief Justices’ Roundtable on Environment, 5-7 December 2011, Jakarta, Indonesia. Taking off from its initial work with the Supreme Court of Indonesia, ADB worked with the chief justice of Indonesia and partnered with UNEP in convening this Roundtable. During this event, the delegates signed A Common Vision on Environment for ASEAN Judiciaries (Jakarta Vision), which affirmed the judiciary’s role in addressing environmental problems and called for (i) regional collaboration on developing and enforcing environmental laws; (ii) sharing of information on the region’s common environmental challenges, legal issues, and best practices in environmental adjudication; (iii) the imposition of appropriate sanctions and penalties, as well as innovative remedies; (iv) establishment and/or strengthening of specialized environmental courts, tribunals, benches and specialization programs; (v) development and implementation of special rules of procedure for environmental cases and environmental alternative dispute resolution; (vi) publication and sharing of judicial decisions on environmental cases; (vii) encouragement of law schools to include environmental law in their curricula, and of the legal profession associations to provide continuing legal education that includes environmental law and jurisprudence; and (viii) the conduct of annual ASEAN Chief Justices’ Roundtables on Environment to further cooperation on environment. The proceedings of the roundtable have been recorded and published, a copy of which is available at: http://www.adb.org/publications/inaugural-asean-chief-justices-roundtable-environment-proceedings.
      • Second ASEAN Chief Justices’ Roundtable on Environment, 7-10 December 2012, Melaka Malaysia.As a result of the roundtable, chief justices and members of the senior judiciaries agreed to form technical working groups to formulate the terms of the memorandum of understanding toward attaining the Jakarta Common Vision. ADB recorded the proceedings of the roundtable and printed copies for distribution to the delegates of the Second Asian Judges Symposium. A copy is available at http://www.adb.org/publications/second-asean-chief-justices-roundtable-e....
      • Third ASEAN Chief Justices’ Roundtable on Environment, 15-18 November 2013, Bangkok, Thailand. By the end of this roundtable, the chief justices and members of the senior judiciaries affirmed the significance of the Jakarta Common Vision, and agreed to accelerate the realization of this vision. In essence, they agreed that each chief justice establish National Working Groups on Environment; that the ASEAN Chief Justices’ Roundtable on Environment also establish an ASEAN Judiciaries Working Group on Environment; that the attendance of chief justices in the roundtables be made a priority; that the roundtable agenda be promptly defined; that the ASEAN judiciaries working group regularly meet; that each judiciary present progress in implementing the Jakarta Common Vision; and that they engage in environmental twinning programs to share learning from each other.
      • South Asia Conference on Environmental Justice, 24-25 March 2012, Bhurban, Pakistan. The conference led to the adoption of the Bhurban Declaration 2012: A Common Vision on Environment for the South Asian Judiciaries which undertakes to establish “green benches” across Pakistan; and collaborate on developing and enforcing environmental laws, strengthening existing specialized courts, training judges and lawyers on environmental law, encouraging law schools to teach environmental law, and the conduct of annual South Asia justices’ conferences on environmental issues to foster cooperation. ADB recorded the proceedings of the conferences, and printed copies for distribution to the delegates of the Second Asian Judges Symposium. A copy is available at http://www.adb.org/publications/south-asia-conference-environmental-justice.
      • Second South Asia Conference on Environmental Justice, 30-31 August 2013, Tashi Taj, Thimpu, Bhutan. In advancing the Bhurban Declaration, the conference led to the signing of the Thimpu Declaration on Enhancing Environmental Justice, which stated the judiciary of Bhutan’s proposal to: (i) develop a Bench Book, compiling all national laws, rules, and cases to facilitate adjudication of environmental cases; (ii) support capacity building of Bhutan’s judiciary on environmental issues, and encourage the inclusion of environmental legal education in its law curriculum; (iii) make available environmental law resources in the library of the Supreme Court of Bhutan; and (iv) support the institutionalization of the South Asia Judges Network on the Environment within the South Asia Regional Co-operation in Law (SAARCLAW). The declaration also stated their agreement to enhance their collaborative efforts to protect the environment and to draft a Memorandum of Understanding for Co-operation between South Asian Judiciaries with their respective heads of judiciaries, which shall tackle actions relating to information exchange, capacity building, and other innovations to strengthen environmental adjudication.
      • World Congress on Justice, Governance, and Law for Environmental Sustainability, 17-20 June 2012, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In collaboration with UNEP and other organizations, ADB co-sponsored this event by funding the participation of 8-10 judges from its DMCs who are champions of environmental law and justice within ADB’s existing programs, subject to ADB representation in the World Congress High-Level International Advisory Committee and/or Executive Steering Committee, representation of ADB officials as chairs or speakers in its sessions, appropriate acknowledgment of ADB support, opportunity to participate in the preparation of the Statement of Principles on Justice, Governance and Law for Environmental Sustainability. The World Congress led to the signing of the Rio+20 Declaration on Justice, Governance and Law for Environmental Sustainability, which (i) affirmed the participants’ concern for the continuing and unprecedented environmental degradation; (ii) stressed the importance of rule of law, an independent judicial and judicial process, and active engagement of all parts of society; and (iii) established an international institutional network to advance justice, governance, and law for environmental sustainability in the 21st century.
      • Judicial Colloquium on Biodiversity, 13 October 2012, Hyberabad, India. Together with IUCN World Commission on Environmental Law and the Secretariat of the Convention on Biodiversity, ADB organized this colloquium as a side event to the 11th Conference of the Parties for the Convention on Biodiversity. Senior judges and justices from Asia gathered to share their experiences in upholding the rule of law to address biodiversity loss in the region, and in the crimes of illegal logging, trade, and destruction of habitat and biodiversity.

(iii) SSTA 8291 – Suppport to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wildlife Fauna and Flora (CITES)

    • Through a small-scale capacity development TA in 2012, ADB initially partnered with the Secretariat of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora to accelerate law enforcement and compliance with CITES provisions in ADB’s DMCs.4 Specifically, the TA aims to contribute to: (i) the improved implementation and enforcement of the CITES provisions concerning legal and international wildlife trade; and (ii) the preparedness of the DMCs to deal with wildlife crimes and to respond to new developments and directions in legal and illegal wildlife trade.
      1. Under SSTA 8291, ADB supported the participation of an estimated 30 delegates from selected DMCs to the 16th CITES Conference of the Parties (CoP16) meeting held in 3-14 March 2013 in Bangkok, Thailand.
      2. ADB also convened a high-level Combating Wildlife Crime: Securing Enforcement, Ensuring Justice, and Upholding the Rule of Law symposium on 10-12 March 2013 alongside the CoP16 meeting to highlight the link between wildlife crime and rule of law in enforcing regulations that combat illegal wildlife trade. The symposium gathered more than 200 government officials, including heads of ministries, chief justices, senior judiciaries, attorneys-general, senior prosecutors, police, customs officials, and world’s wildlife enforcement networks. They discussed the transnational nature of wildlife crime; illegally traded species; trafficking routes for illegal activities; cooperation for combating illegal wildlife trade; curbing demand for illegal wildlife and wildlife products; developing appropriate wildlife policy and legal frameworks; wildlife enforcement; innovative wildlife law and enforcement tools/strategies; and anti-corruption/integrity issues surrounding wildlife crime.
    • In an effort to facilitate better protection and understanding of the nature and scope of wildlife crime in Asia and the Pacific, this SSTA was revised in July 2013, with three major components: (i) development of national policy and legal frameworks for endangered species and wildlife crime; (ii) development of tools and enforcement materials for law enforcement officers, prosecutors, and judges; and (iii) regional and national capacity building workshops and training for law enforcement officials within selected DMCs and other relevant stakeholders to enforce national wildlife laws and CITES compliance, and to ensure coordination and cooperation among various agencies.

(iv) RETA 8497 – Support to Combat Transnational Organized Environmental Crime and Promote Environmental Law Reform and Enforcement

    • This TA, approved in October 2013, builds on ADB’s previous work on environmental and wildlife crime. It aims to further contribute to better wildlife and environmental protection and better understanding of the nature and scope of wildlife in Asia and the Pacific, as well as its widespread implications on poverty, sustainable development, and economic and inclusive growth in ADB’s DMCs. This TA will be implemented in selected DMCs through: (i) review and reform of legal frameworks for endangered species and wildlife crime; (ii) development of national guidance materials to assist officials in wildlife and forestry administration, customs, other enforcement agencies, and the judiciary in their implementation and enforcement of CITES and relevant laws; and (iii) conduct of regional and national capacity building workshops and training to strengthen the capacity of relevant government officials and other stakeholders to enforce compliance with national wildlife law and CITES.

3. KEY MILESTONES ACHIEVED TO DATE

  • ADB’s work in strengthening key capacity and governance issues in environmental adjudication and enforcement in Asia has achieved a number of milestones for the countries.
    • In Southeast Asia, several countries have taken various formal steps to institutionalize and strengthen environmental decision making within the judiciary and legal profession. In the Philippines, in 2008, the chief justice designated 117 environmental courts, and in 2010, the Supreme Court adopted environmental rules to make access to environmental justice easier. In Thailand, in 2009, the president of the Supreme Court issued a court resolution establishing a judicial committee to prepare a draft law on better environmental adjudication. In Indonesia, the Supreme Court has considered a judicial certification program on the environment to allow only those judges who have been certified to decide environmental cases.
    • In South Asia, India’s environmental jurisprudence is characterized by innovations that introduce international environmental law principles into decisions and constitutional interpretations. Environmental jurisprudence in Bangladesh has been similarly progressive and environmental courts have been established in two districts along with an environmental appellate court. In Pakistan, prior to the Environmental Protection Act 1997, environmental enforcement depended on decisions of the higher judiciary through public interest litigation, which means that unless a case was brought before the judges, it was not considered a violation; moreover, in order to establish a violation, principles of natural justice were relied upon. The 1997 Act enabled the designation of environmental magistrates and mandated the creation of environmental tribunals, which are now functioning in most of its provinces. Any violation of environmental principles is now considered a violation of law.
  • Through its environmental justice program, ADB has provided support to the judiciary at three levels: (i) regional level through the Asian Judges Network; (ii) the sub-regional level, currently in Southeast Asia and South Asia; and (iii) national level. Among the milestones are as follows:
    • Regional level: In response to Indonesia’s request to understand the situation of other countries, ADB organized in 2010 the Asian Judges Symposium on Environmental Decision Making, the Rule of Law, and Environmental Justice. Gathering 120 judges from all over Asia, and including Australia, New Zealand, the United States, and Brazil – this was considered to be the largest event held for judges since the 2002 Global Judges Symposium. The judges called for an Asian Judges Network on Environment, a platform for regional cooperation currently supported by ADB, which was formally launched during the Second Asian Judges Symposium on Natural Capital and the Rule of Law in December 2013 in Manila. ADB published the symposium proceedings in 2011, a copy of which is available at http://www.adb.org/publications/asian-judges-symposium-environmental-decision-making-rule-law-and-environmental-justice.
    • Subregional level: At the instance of the Chief Justice of Indonesia during the 2010 Asian Judges Symposium, a sub-regional ASEAN Chief Justices Roundtable on Environment was formed. This was first hosted by Indonesia, and subsequently by Malaysia and then by Thailand judiciary. The Roundtables produced several important milestones: the Jakarta Common Vision on the Environment for the ASEAN Judiciaries (Jakarta Vision) and other action points to further regional collaboration on the environment. The Roundtables also produced two important knowledge products that contain the proceedings of the events. In a parallel effort, ADB supported conferences on environmental justice in South Asia (Pakistan and Bhutan), which came out with two important declarations from the Chief Justices in the region: (i) the Bhurban Declaration 2012: A Common Vision on Environment for the South Asian Judiciaries; and (ii) the Thimpu Declaration on Enhancing Environmental Justice. Proceedings from the initial conference have also been published. These subregional conferences provided a forum for the chief justices and senior members of the judiciary to engage with their peers and discuss challenges and ideas towards more effective environmental adjudication.
    • National level: In the Philippines, ADB has supported the development of the Supreme Court’s Rules of Procedure for Environmental cases by providing advice on the rules and obtaining international expert review. In Indonesia, the ADB works with the Ministry of Environment and Supreme Court of Indonesia as they seek a One Roof Enforcement System (ORES) to coordinate the entire enforcement chain in ensuring compliance with and implementation of environmental law. In Malaysia, the Chief Justice has requested ADB to expand its program to an integrated enforcement to include environmental prosecutors and enforcement agencies. In Pakistan, ADB worked with the Supreme Court in analyzing the state of Pakistan’s environmental protection laws, focusing on the provincial environmental protection acts of Pakistan; the institutional design, principles and procedures provided under the law; and judicial interpretation and enforcement of the laws. In November 2013, ADB published the Development of Environmental Laws and Jurisprudence in Pakistan, which presents the authors’ analysis and findings.

USEFUL STATISTICS OR TRENDS ON ACHIEVEMENT OF TARGETS

Status of Target Activities

Activity Status
Establish the Asian Judges Network on the Environment Accomplished.
Website that offers useful resources relevant to strengthening the capacity of judges to decide environmental cases Accomplished in terms of setting up the website - http://www.asianjudges.org/ and uploading initial resource materials. In progress.
Asian Judges Symposium in conjunction with ADB’s development partners Held on 3-5 December 2013
Manila, Philippines

Roundtables for ASEAN and SAARC judges:

ASEAN Roundtable – December 2011 Held on 5-7 December 2011
Jakarta, Indonesia
ASEAN Roundtable – November 2012 Held on 7-9 December 2012
Melaka, Malaysia
ASEAN Roundtable – November 2013 Held on 15-17 November 2013
Bangkok, Thailand
SAARC Roundtable – May 2012 Held on 24-25 March 2012
Bhurban, Pakistan
SAARC Roundtable – August 2013 Held on 30-31 August 2013
Thimpu, Bhutan
ASEAN Roundtable – November 2014, November 2015, November 2016  
SAARC Roundtable – September 2014, September 2015, September 2016  

5. PARTNERSHIPS/INITIATIVES/FINANCING THAT SUPPORTED THE PROGRAM

  • To date, ADB has successfully established external partnerships in its overall law, justice and development program, with a range of bilateral, multilateral, private sector and civil society partners to augment its limited resources. Consistent with ADB’s finance ++ approach, OGC will continue to adopt an open-tent and expansive approach to coordinating with as many relevant partners as possible, and to augmenting financial and in-kind resources through such partnerships. (LJD 2014-2015)
  • Environmental Justice Program Partnerships:
    • In organizing the Second Asian Judges Symposium on Natural Capital and the Rule of Law in December 2012, ADB has partnered with the Supreme Court of the Philippines, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the Freeland Foundation, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and the Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF). UNEP funded the participation of some of the delegates and resource persons, while the other organizations provided non-monetary contribution, such as through participation of resource persons, event co-hosting, and video production.
    • The Roundtables on Environment in both ASEAN and SAARC regions were convened by ADB in collaboration with the chief judiciaries of the host countries. UNEP has also provided funds for the participation of 10 delegates from ASEAN countries and provision of interpretation equipment during the inaugural Roundtable on Environment in Jakarta, Indonesia.
    • Upon the invitation of UNEP, ADB co-sponsored the World Congress on Justice, Governance, and Law for Environmental Sustainability held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on 1-3 June 2012 on the eve of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development or Rio+20. The other sponsors of the event were the International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI), the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), the Organization of American States (OAS), the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), the World Bank, the International Network for Environmental Compliance and Enforcement (INECE), and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
    • In implementing the TAs related to combating wildlife crime and accelerating law enforcement and compliance of CITES, ADB has partnered with various organizations.
      • It has partnered with the CITES Secretariat, FREELAND Foundation, and the ASEAN Wildlife Enforcement Network (ASEAN-WEN) in implementing the small-scale capacity development TA for support to CITES (SSTA 8291).
      • It has further partnered with the following organizations when ADB convened the Symposium on Combating Wildlife Crime: Securing Enforcement, Ensuring Justice, and Upholding the Rule of Law on 10-12 March 2013 in Bangkok, Thailand: (i) the International Consortium on Combating Wildlife Crime (ICCWC), namely, the CITES Secretariat, ICPO-INTERPOL, the World Bank, and the World Customs Organization (WCO), which provided the resource and technical experts for the technical sessions on innovative strategies in combating wildlife crime; (ii) UNEP and the UN Food and Agricultural Organization Development Law Service, which gave key support in identifying wildlife resources for biodiversity and legal issues; (iii) Wildlife Enforcement Networks (ASEAN-WEN, SA-WEN, Central American WEN, etc.), which provided empirical data and valuable information on global and regional efforts to monitor illegal wildlife trade in the plenary; and (iv) non-governmental organizations, like the IUCN Commission on Environmental Law, TRAFFIC, Freeland/ARREST, WWF, WCS, Shark Savers, and Wildlife Aid, which shared their expertise on broader wildlife trade issues in the plenary.

6. FUTURE ACTIVITIES/STRATEGIC DIRECTIONS FOR FUTURE ACTIONS

  • Future activities and strategic directions for the OGC’s environmental justice work can be found in its Law, Justice, and Development Program Strategy Paper for 2014-2015, which is consistent with ADB’s Strategy 2020 and Environmental Operations Directions 2013-2020.
  • Under the LJD Strategy Paper’s Environment and Natural Resources Law and Enforcement theme, ADB will focus on knowledge sharing on environmental law, natural capital, and environmental and wildlife crime across key law and law enforcement stakeholders, including prosecutors, judges and legal academics. It will also specifically involve assisting DMCs with (i) law reforms to improve their country’s laws to the level of ADB’s safeguards, and/or their obligations under international conventions, and (ii) strengthening the capacity of judges to decide, and law enforcement personal to enforce, environment and natural resources laws.
  • Other LJD program themes closely related to its environmental justice work that is worth mentioning here are: (i) access to justice, which is at the heart of the Rule of Law and LJD. The focus of LJD in this area will be on knowledge sharing to support legal and judicial reforms to facilitate improved implementation of the rule of law, and access to justice. It may involve work with Asia’s judiciaries and ministries of justice on access to the courts, dispute resolution, and grass roots justice programs, and includes OGC’s current and past work on legal empowerment. (ii) energy and water law regulation, which will also focus on knowledge sharing for the effective regulation of the energy and water sector.