Myanmar Conference Recognized as an Outstanding Knowledge Partnership Event

Published on Friday, 29 March 2019
Group photo from ADB's Governance Thematic Group Awards.

ADB’s Governance Thematic Group (GovTG) awarded the Asia-Pacific Judicial Conference on Environmental and Climate Change Adjudication, held on 29-30 October 2018 in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar, as an outstanding Knowledge Partnership Event. In awarding ceremonies last 26 March 2019, the GovTG noted the many firsts and achievements of the event.

Organized by ADB’s Office of the General Counsel, the Conference was a continuation of the annual judicial and chief justices’ conferences organized in the ASEAN and SAARC regions since 2011 under the banner of the Asian Judges Network on Environment (AJNE). For the first time, judges from South Asia, Southeast Asia, and Pacific came together to discuss pressing environmental and climate change issues. Judges learned about solutions and success stories to environmental challenges from around the world and explored their role in the age of climate change litigation. The event was supported by the Global Judicial Institute on the Environment, the World Commission on Environmental Law, and LexisNexis, Inc.

The event was also the first international conference to be hosted by the Myanmar judiciary. It was also one of the first judicial gatherings, organized by ADB so far, that focused on broader climate change and sustainable, inclusive and resilient development issues. Broader discussions at the conference in Myanmar was to honour the request of judges to provide them with Asia-wide jurisprudence and best practices on climate change adaptation and mitigation. 

There were 200 participants in Nay Pyi Taw, which included over 100 judges from more than 20 countries. More than 70 local judges from all District and High Courts of Myanmar attended, making the event an important capacity-building exercise for judges who are new to environment and climate change law.

The conference was also organized as a green event – materials were distributed on USBs, reducing printing; no bottled water was used; LED wall projectors were used instead of tarpaulin banners; the conference bag was made from locally-sourced natural materials; and feedback forms were electronically sent and received. The hotel and venue, Hilton Nay Pyi Taw, also contributed to greening the event. It assigned extra staff to ensure water jugs and glasses were constantly refilled; it maintained a comfortable and energy-efficient room temperature; it used candies wrapped in biodegradable paper instead of plastic; and it did not over prepare food to avoid food wastage.

The organizing team was led by OGC’s Ms. Irum Ahsan, and includes Ms. Ma. Celeste Grace Saniel Gois, Ms. Gladys Sangalang, Mr. Gregorio Rafael P.Bueta, Ms. Ma. Cecilia T. Sicangco, Ms. Briony Eales, and Ms. Frances Joy Cordon-Navarro.