From 10-24 June 2009, the IUCN Environmental Law Programme and the Programme Office for the Southern Caucasus, in collaboration with Adelphi Research, kicked off a first round of training courses focusing on nature conservation and natural resources management under the InWEnt programme “Regional Environmental Policy in the South Caucasus”. The objective of this series of training courses is to contribute to the region's in the further development of nature conservation policies and legislation in order to support approximation to the Aquis Communautaire.
A first training course on “Integrated Biodiversity-related Legislation to Approximate the EU Acquis Communautaire” was held over 3 days each in Georgia, Azerbaijan and Armenia for staff members from different ministries as well as NGOs. Each course followed a similar structure, starting with an introduction to the existing international and European frameworks for biodiversity conservation, then going into more detail regarding legal and policy instruments for biodiversity conservation, their reflection within the EU policies and legislation, and experiences from their implementation in EU Member States.
The topics covered in the course included the designation of protected areas, species protection outside of protected areas as well as from hunting and wildlife trade, the Ecosystem Approach, and synergies between environmental and nature conservation policies. The courses included a variety of case studies that were discussed among the course participants in a moot court scenario in order to follow up the lectures and analyze related legal issues.
The courses, which were taught by Prof. em. Gerd Winter from Bremen University, a long standing member of the IUCN Commission on Environmental Law, and Mr. Thomas Greiber, Legal Officer at the IUCN Environmental Law Centre in Bonn, were received well by the participants. “Thank you very much for the interesting and useful course” wrote one attending national expert in Georgia.
There are two more modules for national courses and one international course planned within the current series of trainings. The remaining national courses will take place in autumn 2009 and spring 2010. The training series is implemented on behalf of InWEnt Capacity Building International, Germany.