Montreal, 2/15/2008-The Joint Public Advisory Committee (JPAC) of the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) in late-December made recommendations to the CEC Council-composed of the federal environment ministers from the three North American countries-calling for greater involvement of indigenous communities in the work of the Commission.
In its Advice to Council, JPAC proposes actions ranging from new capacity building efforts for reducing the dietary risks of lindane and its isomers in Mexico to helping communities develop alternative energy and ecotourism projects.
JPAC based its recommendations on discussions held during its public meeting in Winnipeg, Canada, which also included the CEC-sponsored North American Indigenous Communities Renewable Energy Forum.
As part of its work on environmental issues with indigenous communities, the CEC, with support from JPAC, is also a sponsor of the upcoming Convening of Indigenous Peoples for the Healing of Mother Earth gathering in Palenque, Chiapas. More information is available from the organizers’ website: .
In December, JPAC members also elected Ms. Jane Gardner from the United States as committee chair for 2008.
The Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) was established in 1994 by the governments of Canada, Mexico and the United States through the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation, a parallel environmental agreement to NAFTA. As of 2020, the CEC is recognized and maintained by the Environmental Cooperation Agreement, in parallel with the new Free Trade Agreement of North America. The CEC brings together a wide range of stakeholders, including the general public, Indigenous people, youth, nongovernmental organizations, academia, and the business sector, to seek solutions to protect North America’s shared environment while supporting sustainable development for the benefit of present and future generations
The CEC is governed and funded equally by the Government of Canada through Environment and Climate Change Canada, the Government of the United States of Mexico through the Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales, and the Government of the United States of America through the Environmental Protection Agency.