Ahead of the celebration of its fourth year anniversary of coming into force on August 16, the secretariat of the Minamata Convention on mercury has launched a brand-new website that features a cutting-edge data structure, enhanced accessibility and a fresh new look in three languages- English, French and Spanish.
Four years ago, the Minamata Convention entered into force and started turning the tide in the fight against toxic mercury. To mark the occasion, and in preparation for the fourth meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP-4), the secretariat of the Minamata Convention has launched its brand-new website (mercuryconvention.org).
Executive Secretary of the Minamata Convention Monika Stankiewicz pointed out that “the Convention, one of the world’s youngest multilateral environmental agreements, is growing up, and with it, our understanding of mercury and how to fight it is growing as well. Our new website builds on the past work of the Convention and prepares us better for the future. It is a highly efficient solution that puts data-driven information and a better user experience at the very forefront of our digital efforts”.
She added that “the pandemic has taught us many things, including how important it is to stay connected. The new website has the potential to link knowledge, projects and people in a way that will greatly increase the awareness about the Convention and its positive impact on people and our planet”.
As part of the anniversary celebration, an online event will be held to introduce the new website and its features on 16 August from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. CEST. The webinar is part of the second season of Minamata Online, a series of digital events designed to support Parties and stakeholders to fulfill their obligations under the Convention.
The new website includes, among its main features, a comprehensive information architecture with publications, news and other resources; an up-to-date list of Parties and meetings; and integrated data visualization for subjects like the reporting rate for the first cycle. The website relies on a solid knowledge management platform that is interoperable with other systems such as InforMEA (the United Nations Information Portal on Multilateral Environmental Agreements) in order to better serve the Parties of the Convention, and to effectively inform the public at large about the projects and work undertaken.
The website’s data-driven approach also entails dynamic access to information, ranging from global views, such as party or meeting documents, to dedicated sections such as party profiles or specific implementation sections without any manual intervention. A major step for the future work of the Convention, the website also covers its history, documents and archives since the negotiation process started in 2007: 4,000 documents in 6 UN official languages have been migrated, structured and semantically classified to establish dynamic relationships between them. So far, 132 Parties have joined the Convention to make mercury history.