The mission of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is to provide leadership and encourage partnership in caring for the environment by inspiring, informing, and enabling nations and peoples to improve their quality of life without compromising that of future generations.
UNEP is a primary driving force in the United Nations system for international activities related to the sound management of chemicals through its Harmful Substances and Hazardous Waste programme. UNEP promotes chemical safety by providing policy advice, access to information on toxic chemicals, technical guidance and capacity building to developing countries and those with economies in transition, including activities on chemicals related to the implementation of the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM).
The Secretariat of the Basel Convention and the Secretariat of the Stockholm Convention are administered by UNEP. The secretariat functions for the Rotterdam Convention are performed jointly by UNEP and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
Enhancing cooperation and coordination among the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions has been one of the key issues in international environmental governance continuously addressed by the Governing Council of UNEP in its decisions on environmental governance adopted over the past decade.
By decisions BC.Ex‑1/1, RC.Ex‑1/1 and SC.Ex-1/1, the conferences of the Parties to the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions invited UNEP and FAO to report on progress made in the development of programmatic cooperation in the field to support implementation of the three conventions in areas of common concern and the inclusion of such cooperation in their biennial work programmes. The reports were made available to the meetings of the Conferences of the Parties in 2011.
Consultative process on financing options for chemicals and wastes
The consultative process on financing options for chemicals and wastes was launched by the UNEP Executive Director in recognition of the need for adequate resources in the field of chemicals and wastes management. The process was first announced at the fourth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants held in May 2009. The purpose of the consultations is to analyse the current situation with regard to financing for chemicals and waste management at the national level, including but not limited to the implementation of Party obligations under chemicals-related multilateral environmental agreements, and to devise strategic, synergistic proposals for improving it. The consultations also provide advice to the UNEP Executive Director on options that could be pursued to move forward in this area.