Media Centre

Press Conferences












1:00 – 2:00PM

Opening Assembly

Overview of the Assembly, the state of the world’s pollution and suggestions for action.

3:30 – 4:15PM

Women and Chemicals

Women’s toxic chemical exposures and Sustainable Development. The Swedish Government, UNEP and the Global Public Interest NGO Network –IPEN- will announce a new global partnership to address women and chemical safety – an issue that affects half the world’s population.

4:30 – 5:30PM

South Sudan Report

State of the Environment in South Sudan and UN Environment South Sudan Country office activities give a scope of the youngest nation’s first report after 2007. It highlights the use of resources, environmental challenges and actions being taken to address the issues.









8:30 – 9:45AM

World Soil Day Breakfast

Role of soil organic carbon in mitigating the effects of climate change. Jointly organized by UN Environment and the Food and Agriculture Organization, the meeting will call attention to the world’s most pressing issues impacting soils, including degradation and pollution.

10:00 – 11:00AM

Post Conflict and Disaster; The Iraq Report

Impact of conflict on environment and health in Iraq. Launch of new report and presentation of UNEP Technical Note, potential of other areas where conflict pollution has an impact (Ukraine, Gaza, Balkans)

1:00 – 2:00PM

Frontiers Report

Launch of UN Environment annual flagship report that examines new issues facing the environment, focusing this year on antimicrobial resistance, nanomaterials, marine protected areas, sand and dust storms, solar solutions and environmental displacement.

5:00 – 6:00PM

Partnership For Action on Green Economy

The Ministerial press event will bring together Ministers/Heads of Delegations of the PAGE partner countries and its funding partners as well as the five UN agencies to: Celebrate countries successes, Expand the Partnership and invite new countries, Honour the Funding Partners of PAGE and Announce the venue and date of the 2018 Ministerial Conference.

6:00 – 7:00PM

Adult Champions of the Earth

Announcing the Winners of the 2017 Champions of the Earth. The session will draw focus on how leaders of business, government and civil society are driving the transition

Towards a sustainable future and also show the power of the individual to spur collective action.









9:00 – 9:45AM

Zayed International Foundation

Announcement of the Dubai International Scientific Conference on Pollution which is co-organised by Zayed International Foundation for the Environment in partnership with the UN Environment. Also launch of the ‘Zayed Green Challenge’, a smart innovative platform for green knowledge with educational and entertainment tools.

10:00 – 10:45AM

Beijing Airport Report

Green Airport: Runway to Sustainable Development. This report puts forward a Green Airport Assessment Framework using indicators on economic, social, environment and governance to measure the status and progress made towards green airports. In particular, the report features a detailed analysis of Beijing Capital International Airport using data collected during 2010-2017.

11:00 – 12NOON

Mercury Report

New Surprising Data about mercury levels in COP1 Delegates.  The case for urgent action on mercury will be made with new research that suggests even global decision makers, those among the most knowledgeable about mercury contamination, are not protected from mercury pollution. The study augments a global study of Mercury in Women of Child-bearing Age in 25 Countries that described the scope and impact of mercury pollution.                       

1:00 -2:00PM

Closing Assembly

Announcements of significant progress and achievements from the conference, including resolutions and other agreements

Media Panels (held in the media tent)

Space perspectives (Dec 4, 15.00): What we know from space about emissions, pollution and our vulnerable place in the universe. Panel: Rakesh Sharma (astronaut), Mae Jemison (astronaut), Paul Newman (NASA scientist). Moderator: Rob de Jong, UN Environment expert on air pollution and transport. Background: UN Environment Breathe Life campaign.


Environmental defenders (Dec 4, 16.30): Stories from the front line of environmental protection, with activists who risk their lives to keep the rest of us safe. Panel: John Knox (UN Secretary General’s Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the Environment), Phyllis Omido (environmental defender), Julius Opiyo (Global Witness), Laetitia Zobel (UN Environment expert on indigenous people’s issues). Moderator: Angela Kariuki (UN Environment legal expert). Background: Global Witness Defenders of the Earth campaign.


Young champions (Dec 5, 14.15): Meet the first-ever winners of the UN Environment Young Champions prize, awarded after a global hunt for young people with the best ideas for saving our planet. Panel: six winners from Africa, North America, South America, Europe, West Asia and Asia Pacific. Moderator: TBC. Background: UN Environment Young Champions prize


Kenyan plastic bag ban update (Dec 6, 14.30): A look at progress since Kenya banned plastic bags and other single-use plastic in August 2017. Panel: Geoffrey Wahungu (DG, Kenya National Environment Management Authority), Irene Kamunge, (Director of Legal Services, Kenya National Environment Management Authority), Betterman Simidi Musasia (CEO, Kenya Clean Up), UN Environment marine litter expert. Moderator: Sam Barratt. Background: UN Environment CleanSeas campaign

Media Space Evening

What’s up there? What does it tell us about down here? (Dec 4, 19.00) An evening with former astronaut Rakesh Sharma, NASA scientist Paul Newman, UN Environment experts, and the travelling telescope team, to look at the stars and talk about our place in space and what we need to do to save our tiny planet.

Nairobi CBD Bike Ride to Beat Pollution

Race to #BeatPollution (Dec 3, 07.30): Hundreds of international and local cyclists will descend upon Central Nairobi with their bikes to take over the streets of the CBD. The Race to #BeatPollution is a leisurely bike ride that involves high-level participants and hundreds of Kenyan residents to show how the world is ready for more sustainable transportation methods and share-the-road initiatives.


The ride will be flagged off by Mike Mbuvi Sonko, Governor of Nairobi. Other prominent riders include Head of UN Environment, Erik Solheim; President of MoBike (the world’s largest bike sharing scheme), Hu Wei Wei, Ambassador of the Netherlands, Frans Makken; Ambassador of China, Liu Xianfa; and High Commissioner of Malawi, Agrina Mussa.

Documentary Screenings

“Chasing Coral” documentary Q&A (Dec 6, 11.00-13.00 at the EU tent; and Dec 6, 19.30-21.30 at the Alchemist in town): Screening and Q&A with director, Jeff Orlowski and experts on the state of the world’s coral. 

Feature Story Possibilities

1. UNEP's Young Champions of the Earth 6 regional winners. They will all receive awards from Ellie Goulding the evening of Tuesday December 5th.


- Kaya Dorey, fighting fast fashion from her hometown in Canada across the world



- Omer Badokhon, from Yemen, on biogas and cookstoves



- Liliana Jaramillo, from Ecuador, on making green roofs work/sustainableño



- Adam Dixon, from the UK, on harnessing new tech to ensure sustainable agriculture



2. [Adult] Champions of the Earth, yet to be announced:



3. We will also have two ex-astronauts Mae Jemison, the first African-American woman in space who flew for NASA, and Rakesh Sharma, who would like to speak about the perils of consumerism.



4. For environmental defenders, we will have Phyllis Omido, who shut down a lead smelting plant in Mombasa and is still seeing the effects today and no treatment for sufferers, and Julius Opiyo, a miner who has been mining gold since he was 12 and is trying to persuade other artisanal miners in western Kenya to stop using mercury due to the terrible effects on human health and the environment. 



5. Ministers, top UN officials and high-level business leaders; details available on request.

UN Environment Spokespeople

Rob de Jong - Expert on air pollution, transport, clean fuel.
Head of Air Quality and Mobility Unit.


Lisa Svensson - Oceans Expert.
Global Director for Oceans.


Gabriel Grimsditch - Coral Expert.
Programme Management Officer
Marine and Coastal Ecosystems Branch.


Jerker Tamelander - Coral Expert.
Head of Coral Unit.


Oli Brown - Expert on Conflict and Disasters.
Coordinator for Disasters and Conflicts Programme.


Jian Liu - Environmental Science Expert
Chief Scientist


Chris Cox - Water pollution and chemicals expert
Programme Officer for Coastal and Marine Ecosystems


Lis Bernhardt - Freshwater expert.
Programme Management Officer for Freshwater Ecosystems


Jorge Laguna-Celis - Governance and Stakeholder expert
Secretary of the Secretariat of Governing Bodies and Director.


Elizabeth Mrema - Environmental Law expert
Director of Law Division


Arnold Kreilhuber - Environmental law expert
Head of the International Environmental Law Unit.


Maria Manguiat - Climate Law specialist
Head of UN Environment's National Law Unit,


Ligia Noronha - Economy expert.
Director of Economy Division


Muralee Thummarukudy - Disasters and Conflict expert.
Operations Manager at Post-conflict and Disaster Management Programme.


Mette Wilke, Environmental policy expert
Director, Ecosystems Division


Richard Munang - Climate Change expert for Africa
Africa Regional Climate Change Programme Coordinator


Habib El-Habr - Marine Litter Expert
Coordinator, Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities (GPA)   

For interview and other media requests contact the un environment media team: