We work to support the implementation of Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs).
Multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) are one of the key instruments of international environmental governance and international environmental law. They are separate treaties to which States, regional economic integration organizations and, in some instances, and international organizations have become a Party. They intend to promote international cooperation on a specific set of environmental issues, such as the protection of the ozone layer and biodiversity and sustainable management of hazardous chemicals and waste.
UNEP has been designated by the governing bodies of 15 MEAs, eight global and seven regional, to provide secretariat functions to those conventions. This host relationship established with UNEP includes UNEP providing cost-effective administrative and financial support for each secretariat to carry out its responsibilities. Read more in the Factsheets on the UNEP-administered global MEAs.
UNEP also provides national capacity building for effective MEAs implementation through the following select initiatives:
- Programme on the MEAs in the African, Caribbean and the Pacific regions (ACP MEAs) – supports 79 countries meet their obligations as parties to the MEAs.
- InforMEA - provides easy access to information on the MEAs.
- OzonAction - strengthens the capacity of governments and industries to implement the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer.
- Biosafety Clearing House Capacity Building Project - strengthens the capacity of governments and industries to implement the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety to the Convention on Biological Diversity.
The 15 UNEP-administered MEAs include:
- Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)
- Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES)
- Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS)
- Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal
- Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade
- Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants
- Minamata Convention on Mercury
- Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer
Regional Seas Conventions
- Convention for Cooperation in the Protection, Management and Development of the Marine and Coastal Environment of the Atlantic Coast of the West, Central and Southern African Region (Abidjan Convention)
- Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Coastal Region of the Mediterranean (Barcelona Convention)
- Convention for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment of the Wider Caribbean Region (Cartagena Convention)
- Convention for the Protection, Management and Development of the Marine and Coastal Environment of the Western Indian Ocean (Nairobi Convention)
- Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea (Tehran Convention)
Other Regional Conventions