NAIROBI, June 5 (Xinhua) -- South Sudan launched a UN-backed environmental policy and outlook report to tackle environmental challenges as the country commemorated the World Environment Day on Tuesday.
Taban Deng Gai, First Vice President of South Sudan who launched the state of environmental policy and 2018 outlook report in Juba, said the government is committed to creating more awareness to protect its environmental heritage.
"The government of South Sudan will take all necessary measures to ensure that the public are encouraged to be involved in the management, protection and conservation of the environment," Gai said.
Gai hailed the UN Environment for supporting South Sudan to launch its first state of environmental policy and outlook report.
"The government will fully support the recommendations presented in the report to manage and protect the environment. Not only from the plastic pollution but also from the big deal of deforestation, climate change and pollution from the oil field," he said.
Environment Minister Josephine Naponi said since independence, South Sudan has suffered environmental degradation due to internal conflict and the unsustainable use of its natural resources.
Naponi said the last detailed environmental assessment of South Sudan was carried out by UN Environment in 2007, when South Sudan was still under Khartoum administration, in the form of the Sudan post-conflict environmental assessment.
Gray Lewis, UN Environment Director of Policy and Programs, said South Sudan must address shortcomings in the land tenure system that causes much harm in the country.
"South Sudan has a huge potential to develop wildlife tourism, so sustainable tourism strategies or polices also need to be in place," Lewis said.