United Nations Environment Programme
The United Nations Environment Programme has two pressing topics on its agenda for delegates to debate and craft innovative solutions for:
1. Sustainable Infrastructure in Developing Countries
With the the threat of climate change becoming more and more urgent, solutions to increase sustainability and reduce humans’ carbon footprint are of utmost importance. Building sustainable infrastructure as a means to combat the negative effects of CO2 in the environment has become a larger area of discussion, especially in regards to developing countries. Moreover, the population of the developing world is growing more rapidly than in developed regions, projected to include 85.9 percent of the world’s population by 2050. Finding ways to fund, research and build infrastructure in the developing world that is both able to accommodate and provide the necessary resources for such growth while also being conscious of the environment is therefore critical.
2. Depletion of Marine Fishery Resources
Around half of the world’s fish species are found in the marine environment, and those that are edible have long provided an important food resource for humans and other animals. Fishing is now a huge commercial operation and marine fisheries have grown in size and sophistication in the last 50 years. The industry is credited for employing 660 to 820 million people, 10 to 12 percent of the world’s population. Although the oceans are vast, their fish stocks are not limitless. Many marine fisheries are now being overfished, and regulations aimed at saving endangered species have either been ineffective or have exacerbated the problem. Regulating this incredibly important sector of the world economy, while safeguarding marine life as well as the livelihoods of many will require creative thinking and collaboration amongst the international community.
To be eligible for individual awards, delegates in GA committees are required to submit a position paper. Position papers should approach each topic from the perspective of the delegate’s nation, with an aim to identify and analyze ongoing actions relevant to the topic. Strong position papers form the foundation for more in-depth research into the topics and can provide a plan for an effective performance in committee. Delegates do not need to outline individual solutions, but should rather focus on their country’s view of the problem and general categories or areas for solutions. Delegates should cover each topic within one single spaced page, (no more than 2 pages total for both topics). Submissions are due to the chair via email by 11:59 pm on December 1st, 2017.
The delegate with the best research will also receive the Position Paper Award. For a sample paper, please click here.