Pacific Community adopts its first Social and Environmental Responsibility Policy

Secretariat of the Pacific Community

25 April 2018

Nouméa, New Caledonia – A Social and Environmental Responsibility (SER) policy applies to all the work of the Pacific Community (CPS) since 3 April 2018. On that date it was approved by SPC Director-General, Colin Tukuitonga. The SER policy aims to manage the social and environmental risks and impacts inherent to all SPC activities in an ethical and sustainable way, along three key areas: people, operations and programs.

The SER policy was developed by Aude Chenet, Coordinator of Environmental Sustainability, under the supervision of Sylvie Goyet, Director of the Climate Change and Environmental Sustainability Program. The specialized technical expertise has received financial support from USAID-Climate READY .

The Social and Environmental Responsibility Policy will have a positive impact on individuals, enhancing the fulfilment of the staff and others involved in its activities, with SPC promoting diversity and inclusion, ensuring equal rights and forming a safe, healthy and dynamic work environment; it will also apply to operations, with SPC committing to environmental protection with a focus on carbon neutrality and zero waste; finally, SPC commits to supporting programmes and projects to deliver activities that maximise benefits while minimizing social impacts and environmental degradation.

The policy is now entering a "test phase". In SPC Divisions, practical activities will be implemented and evaluated; in the programs, three projects will apply it as a pilot. A SER practice group will be established to exchange knowledge, build capacity and cooperate in implementing the policy. This group will work in conjunction with the Regional Human Rights Education Team and the Social Development Programme, with an ultimate goal of systematically integrating SER into the overall functioning of the Organization.

“SER policies have been successful for two decades. They strengthen organizational cohesion and provide the social and environmental responsibility basis for sustainable development. For more than five years, SPC has been working to strengthen its environmental sustainability in its operations. By extending this logic to its programs, it is part of a dynamic that aligns perfectly with the Sustainable Development Goals, particularly those related to climate, equality and renewable energies”, says Aude Chenet at SPC.

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