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Reimagining Environmental Multilateralism

Reimagining Environmental Multilateralism (REM)" is an initiative that I am involved in, hosted by Northeastern University's School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs and partnered with the Rwanda Environment Management Authority. Funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the project centers on creating a Knowledge Network of officials from 12-15 small states. The goal is to collaboratively formulate agendas for the 2024 UN Environment Assembly and the Summit of the Future.

Background: Despite existing for five decades, the contemporary environmental governance system still grapples with growing global challenges. The 2022 UN report, "A Breakthrough for People and Planet," emphasizes the need for renewed trust in multilateralism. REM shifts the spotlight to small states, which have historically demonstrated proactive and innovative policy-making.

Objectives: REM aims to empower small states by creating a network that encourages knowledge generation and exchange on environmental agreements. Through this, we intend to:

  1. Develop a group of ambassadors focused on environmental multilateralism to amplify collective impact.

  2. Enable small states to initiate new global initiatives and improve national commitment implementation.

  3. Strengthen South-South cooperation.


By connecting like-minded states, REM aims to enhance the influence of small states in global environmental discussions, following the model set by initiatives like AOSIS (Alliance of Small Island States).

Currently, we are actively engaged in bringing together small states during the UN INC negotiations for an international plastics treaty. This effort aligns with REM's core mission to empower small states and amplify their voices in shaping global environmental policies. By convening these states, we aim to build a strong, collective position that will contribute significantly to the framing and success of the international plastics treaty. This endeavor not only enhances the influence of small states in multilateral environmental negotiations but also serves as a real-world application of REM’s overarching goals.

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