On 19 August 2022, the Trilateral Cooperation Secretariat (TCS) held a Trilateral Symposium on Environmental Education and Public Awareness online. Nearly 100 people including Ms. Ou Boqian, Secretary-General of TCS, Mr. Bek Bum-hym, Deputy Secretary-General of TCS, government officials from the environmental protection departments of China, Japan and Republic of Korea (ROK), and representatives from international organisations and academic institutions attended the symposium. ACC representative was invited to attend the symposium online.
Ms. Ou Boqian said in her opening speech that China, Japan and the ROK are friendly neighbours with strong economic development momentum. They are all facing the same challenges brought by environmental degradation and climate change. Under the current framework of international cooperation on climate change, the three countries maintain an active attitude of cooperation, and have their own advantages and leading technologies in the field of environmental protection technology. In order to maximise the effect of cooperation, the three countries should strengthen cooperation in the fields of carbon emission and carbon neutrality, integrate resources, release potential and make efforts to improve the regional environment.
Mr. Bek Bum-hym said that the COVID-19 pandemic has led to the digitalisation and networking of education which makes students and teachers have less access to nature and be lack of environmental awareness. With the improvement of the epidemic situation, we should pay more attention to and invest in environmental education to raise public environmental awareness, and carry out publicity and education activities in response to global climate change.
Government officials from China, Japan and the ROK introduced the practices of their governments in the treatment of COVID-19 medical waste, the recycling of marine plastic waste and the fulfilling of commitments on climate change. The UNESCO expert briefed the joint efforts of the three countries on education for sustainable development in the post-pandemic era under the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
As one of the key annual activities of TCS, the symposium aims to enhance public understanding of environmental protection policies and environmental cooperation among the three countries, strengthen exchanges among environmental educators, and increase awareness of environmental protection and sustainable development among children, young people and the general public.