Building back better: Animal welfare, environment & sustainable development nexus



Animal Welfare, Sustainable Development

On 15 July 2022 the World Federation for Animals (WFA) hosted an online conversation on “Building back better: animal welfare, sustainable development, and environment nexus” between representatives from government, academia, intergovernmental processes, and civil society groups. The event took place on the margins of the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development. It was organised with the Animal Issues Thematic Cluster and the International Coalition for Working Equids (ICWE) and moderated by journalist Urmi Goswami from The Economic Times.


A summary of the event’s key messages is available in this short report.


For more information on our panelists, you can expand on their names below.

H.E. Mr. Damptey Bediako Asare, High Commissioner of the Republic of Ghana to the Republic of Kenya

His Excellency Mr. Damptey Bediako Asare is the High Commissioner of the Republic of Ghana to the Republic of Kenya with concurrent accreditation to Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda and Tanzania. He is also the Permanent Representative of Ghana to the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and UN-Habitat.

Ambassador Damptey Asare is a career diplomat with over twenty-four years experience in the Ghana Foreign Service. He has served at Ghana’s Missions in Moscow, London and New York. While serving in New York he was a negotiator for Group of 77 and China on a number of Resolutions and represented the Ghana Permanent Mission in New York on the UN Secretary General Advisory Board on the UN Democracy Fund (UNDEF) and the UN Population Award Committee.

Natalia Cediel, One Health High-level Expert Panel Member

She is a Veterinarian, with an MSc Public Health and a PhD Veterinary Sciences, with fourteen years of experience working in multi-disciplinary health teams, on veterinary public health education and epidemiologic research in zoonoses. Her current work is focused on gender-based One Health, the implementation of a one health approach for rabies in Colombia and Latin America, risk perception of zoonoses and setting priorities for surveillance, prevention and control of zoonoses in developing and developed countries. Natalia has created educational material to teach the One Health approach in veterinary programs in Latin America and supported One Health informed policy making.

She is also a lecturer and researcher at La Salle University, Colombia, works as an independent consultant on public health and is one of the leaders of the Iberoamerican Cyted Thematic Network in One Health, Climate Change and Loss of Biodiversity. She has several publications on epidemiology of infectious diseases, health and social inequalities of Colombian rural populations and the 2030 Agenda on sustainable development.

Cleo Verkuijl, Fellow Stockholhm Institute

Cleo is a Research Fellow at the Stockholm Environment Institute and has over a decade of experience in UN climate and environmental policy. She previously led SEI’s policy engagement in the area of climate change, and was a coordinating lead author of the first two Fossil Fuel Production Gap Reports, published in collaboration with the UN Environment Programme. She is also a coordinating lead author of a forthcoming UN report on food systems.

Cleo has taught environmental law and policy as an Adjunct Professor at Johns Hopkins University, Bologna, and was a policy officer with Climate Action Network International during the Paris climate negotiations.

She is the lead author of a recent policy report on how governments can mainstream animal welfare into sustainable development policy. Recommendations from this report have been featured in the Independent Scientific Report for the Stockholm+50 Conference, which was launched last month.

Carmen Capriles, Women’s Major Group UNEA

Carmen is a feminist and environmental activist, organizer and advocate, she lives in La Paz, Bolivia, she has founded and directed the volunteer organization Reacción Climática for over 10 year with the aim to raise awareness about environmental problems, like the melting of the glaciers of the Andean Mountains and the impact of climate change on vulnerable population, promoting the conservation of Biodiversity, the importance of Protected Areas. She advocates for women’s rights and gender equality and a promoter of the Escazú Agreement for the LAC region. She is currently Global Facilitator for the Women’s Major Group for UNEA/UNEP.

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