Africa has a wealth of natural resources, including minerals, land, biological diversity, wildlife, forests, fisheries and water. The region offers significant potential for human, social and economic development with a large heritage of biodiversity which forms the continent’s the region’s natural wealth on which it’s social and economic systems are based. These resources are also of global importance for the world’s climate and for the development of socio-economic activities. Despite these important assets, Africa faces a host of environmental problems ranging from climate change, air pollution, to deforestation, land degradation, and desertification, biodiversity loss as well as chemical and waste management.
The establishment of Africa Environment Partnership Platform (AEPP) stems from the decision of the 12th Ordinary Session of AMCEN, which took place in Arusha, Tanzania in September 2012. . At this AMCEN meeting the African Environment Ministers adopted a decision to establish an African Environment Partnership Platform (AEPP) to “coordinate, mobilize resources, foster knowledge and align support for the implementation of the Environment Action Plan” (AMCEN, 2012). The platform was officially launched at COP 22 in Morocco during the UN Climate Change Conference in November 2016. In view of this, the African Ministerial Conference on Environment (AMCEN) in conjunction with the NEPAD Agency, the African Union Commission and other institutions is organizing the 1st Africa Environment Partnership Platform meeting from 20-21 September, 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya. The theme for the Conference is “50 years of Environmental Governance and Sustainability in Africa”. The rationale for the theme is reviewing environmental management in Africa since the period when most African countries gained independence and also the adoption of the “African Convention on the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (also known as Algiers Convention) in 1968. The theme is also forward looking at issues related to environmental sustainability in line with global goals on the Sustainable Development Agenda and processes (SDGs, the Paris Agreement and the Africa’s Agenda 2063). The Event will take the form of high profile panel sessions and highly interactive moderated plenary discussions as well as parallel sessions that will engage a number of pertinent issues in Africa’s environmental sector. The topic for the high level segment which will be made up of Ministers of Environment from Africa, Heads of Inter-governmental organizations, Business leaders, Academia, Civil Society and development partners.
The AEPP will also be preceded by an awards/ recognition ceremony to honour and recognize countries, institutions and individuals who have played key roles and contributed significantly towards the management of the continent’s environmental assets.