Achievement at a glance
The GPNM is recognized to be a major multi-stakeholder support mechanism of the Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-based Activities (GPA) in addressing the challenge of nutrient excess or deficits and the potential negative impacts on the marine and terrestrial ecosystems. The mandate to address particularly marine pollution and creation of hypoxic zones associated with nutrient runoff was affirmed by countries at the 2012 Inter-Governmental Review of the GPA under the Manila Declaration. Based on this mandate, the GPNM under support from UNEP has mobilized resources from various donors, but most significantly from the GEF to execute the Global Nutrient Cycling Project. The project, which is global in scope, contributes to the building the knowledge foundations on nitrogen and phosphorus nutrient cycling, the impacts on the environment and the development of a global nutrient management decision-support toolbox. The project has also contributed to development of methodologies for ecosystem assessments at the watershed unit level in India and the Philippines, methodologies that can be replicated elsewhere. The GPNM is actively supporting the development of regional platforms for nutrient management, having established a platform for the Asia region and one for the Caribbean region. Awareness raising and strategic planning within the regional platforms has enhanced buy-in from countries and consideration of initiatives to address the negative impacts of excess nutrient loading in the marine environment. Of relevance to SIDS, the Caribbean platform has had 2 planning meetings, the most recent held in Trinidad & Tobago in February 2016. The elements of a workplan were articulated in this meeting.
Challenges faced in implementation
Additional resources will need to be mobilized to create a greater SIDS focus for the GPNM. It should be noted however that there are regional projects in the Caribbean (GEF-IWEco, GEF-CReW+, GEF-CLME+), the Pacific (GEF-IWRM) and the Atlantic-Indian Ocean (GEF-IWRM AIO SIDS) within which nutrient management is embedded, hence funding gaps may be addressed to some degree. The approach will be for the GPNM to enhance the 'connectivity' across the SIDS regions under the global nutrient management framework. This could be a coordination challenge but is expected that by linking the Regional Platforms to the Regional Seas frameworks this challenge may be addressed.
The formalization of the GPNM Regional Platforms within the Regional Seas Programmes (both UNEP and non-UNEP administered) is being pursued. The Caribbean Regional Seas Programme will offer a support role for the GPNM Caribbean platform. The process anticipates that governments will nominate a national contact point for the regional platform. It is proposed that reporting on progress on addressing the nutrient challenge in the region will be aligned with the regional seas inter-governmental reporting so as to ensure linkage and mainstreaming with allied initiatives being undertaken within the regional seas umbrella.
(1) Government agencies engaged in agriculture, coastal zone management, wastewater; (2) Private sector groups - farmers, hotel operators, other commercial operators; (3) Civil society, academia
(1) Government - broadened awareness and enhanced capacities to develop and implement policy and help beneficiary stakeholders implement effective solutions to address adverse outcomes poor nutrient management practices. The GPNM's regional platform events have been helpful in raising awareness among attending government representatives, particularly in the case of the Caribbean.
(2) Private sector - Through various regional and national initiatives already in progress in sustainable agriculture and wastewater management, the issue is being tackled at this stakeholder level, where awareness and capacities are being built, although at this point not specifically under the GPNM umbrella. The GPNM will need to forge relevant linkages particularly in the creation of a 'community of practice' so that these interventions can be used as learning experiences and shared through the GPNM platform.
(3) Civil society - There are various interventions at regional and national levels are of relevance to these stakeholders, but the linkages to the GPNM framework through the regional platforms will need to be strengthened.