To express their common ambitions, the ministers adopted two ministerial declarations at today’s meeting: one on Nordic ambitions for the new biodiversity agreement to be negotiated in Kunming, China this summer, and one on green shipping with reference to the Clydebank Declaration, signed by the Nordic ministers at COP26 in November. A total of 22 countries signed the Clydebank Declaration, which included a commitment to deliver six green shipping routes globally.
At the meeting, the Nordic ministers agreed to the creation of green corridors for emission-free shipping between ports in the Nordic Region.
Norway’s Minister of Climate and Environment, Espen Barth Eide says: “I’m very pleased with the agreement for the Nordic Region to pioneer the green transition of shipping.”
I’m very pleased with the agreement for the Nordic Region to pioneer the green transition of shipping.
The ministers also discussed key areas for the forthcoming negotiations on a new biodiversity agreement at COP15 in Kunming, China. In connection with this, they signed a ministerial declaration stating, among other things, that the eight ministers present: “Agree to step up efforts for and to mainstream biodiversity in the Nordic Region through sustainable consumption and production initiatives, reduced food and plastic waste, healthy oceans, nature-based solutions, financing biodiversity and promoting human livelihoods, including the traditional livelihoods of indigenous peoples and local communities”.
Denmark’s Minister of Environment, Lea Wermelin, says: “We’re in the middle of a global natural crisis, which requires joint international solutions. I have high expectations that COP15 in Kunming will deliver ambitious outcomes, and with our declaration today, this is exactly the message we want to send from the Nordic countries.”
We’re in the middle of a global natural crisis, which requires joint international solutions. I have high expectations that COP15 in Kunming will deliver ambitious outcomes
A global agreement on plastics and a successful Norwegian presidency
The ministers also took the opportunity to thank the Norwegian Ministry of Climate and Environment for successfully presiding over the international negotiations on a global agreement on plastics at UNEA 5.2, and signed a joint letter to the Director General of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Inger Andersen, underlining the Nordic Region’s continued support for an ambitious agreement.
The Nordic countries have long worked actively to safeguard a legally binding global agreement for plastic waste in the oceans by, among other things, ensuring a solid knowledge base for negotiations through the reports “International sustainability criteria for plastic products in a global agreement on plastic pollution” and “Possible elements of a new global agreement to prevent plastic pollution”.
On two previous occasions, the Nordic environment and climate ministers have signed ministerial declarations clarifying shared Nordic ambitions for the area of plastics.
“Nordic Ministerial Declaration on a global agreement on plastic pollution and ambitions for UNEA 5.2”, signed in 2021, and “Nordic Ministerial Declaration on the need for a new global agreement to prevent marine plastic litter”, signed in 2020.
Sights set high for COP27
The ministers also used the meeting to discuss Nordic co-operation’s aims for COP27 in November, as well as to discuss how the Nordic countries can contribute to raising climate ambitions in the negotiations. The discussion culminated in a joint statement.
Ministers will next meet in November.