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The United Nations Environment Assembly,

Recalling the fourth Programme for the Development and Periodic Review of Environmental Law, adopted by the Governing Council in its decision 25/11 (I) as a broad strategy for the international law community and the United Nations Environment Programme in formulating activities in the field of environmental law for the decade beginning in 2010, and its midterm review called for in that decision,

Also recalling Governing Council decision 27/9 on advancing justice, governance and law for environmental sustainability, Governing Council decision SS.XI/5 on guidelines for the development of national legislation on access to information, public participation and access to justice in environmental matters and United Nations Environment Assembly resolution 1/13 on implementation of Principle 10 of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development,

Noting with appreciation the work of the meeting of senior government officials expert in environmental law on the midterm review of the fourth Programme for the Development and Periodic Review of Environmental Law, held in Montevideo from 7 to 11 September 2015, and the joint initiative of the United Nations Environment Programme, the United Nations Development Programme and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research in their efforts to promote implementation of Principle 10, such as the guide Putting Rio Principle 10 into Action, as well as other efforts to that effect,

Recognizing that the further implementation of the fourth Programme for the Development and Periodic Review of Environmental Law, in addition to addressing emerging issues, should be undertaken against the backdrop of recent developments advancing sustainable development, in particular the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the further development of international environmental law, including multilateral environmental agreements concluded since 2010, as well as relevant resolutions and decisions of the United Nations Environment Assembly and the Governing Council of the United Nations Environment Programme,

Emphasizing the need for activities in the field of environmental law – undertaken by Governments, legal experts, academics and relevant United Nations organizations including the United Nations Environment Programme – to contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and their targets,

Having considered the report of the Executive Director,

1. Invites member States to designate national focal points for exchanging information and building capacities in order to collaborate with and guide the United Nations Environment Programme in strengthening the application of the Programme for the Development and Periodic Review of Environmental Law and to monitor and evaluate its implementation;

2. Requests the Executive Director, in close coordination with the national focal points designated in paragraph 1 above, and subject to available resources, to:

(a) Prioritize action on environmental law during the remaining period of the fourth Programme for the Development and Periodic Review of Environmental Law to support delivering on the environmental dimension of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, consistent with the environmental objectives, and public health benefits such as those related to air quality, identified in recent United Nations Environment Assembly and Governing Council resolutions and decisions, bearing in mind the relevant recommendations of the meeting of senior government officials expert in environmental law on the midterm review of the fourth Programme for the Development and Periodic Review of Environmental Law;

(b) Produce guidance to member States for effective legislative, implementation and enforcement frameworks in a manner consistent with Governing Council decision 27/9 on advancing justice, governance and law for environmental sustainability and, as appropriate, United Nations Environment Assembly resolution 1/13 on implementation of Principle 10 of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development;

(c) Prepare (i) an assessment of the implementation, effectiveness and impact of the fourth Programme for the Development and Periodic Review of Environmental Law, and (ii) proposals for the work by the United Nations Environment Programme in the area of environmental law for a specific period beginning in 2020; provide an opportunity for comment on the aforementioned assessment and proposals by relevant actors who are undertaking the implementation of the fourth Programme for the Development and Periodic Review of Environmental Law, including major groups and relevant stakeholders; and submit the assessment and proposals for consideration at the United Nations Environment Assembly session to be held before the end of 2019.