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By ROE News on 7/25/2016 8:13 AM
Parties to the Montreal Protocol have come closer to a deal to further control potent global warming-inducing chemicals in a move that would provide a powerful push to help achieve the Paris Agreement on climate change.

Thanks to the Protocol, countries have already eradicated chlorofluorocarbons and are on track to eradicate hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HFCs) – climate-harming chemicals found in refrigeration, air conditioning and foams. HFCs are often used as a replacement for CFCs and have a global warming effect up to thousands of times greater than carbon dioxide.

At their meetings held in Vienna on 15-23 July, the 197 parties to the Montreal Protocol considered potential freeze dates for HFCs and schedules for reducing their production and consumption in both developed and developing countries, and forwarded them for further...
By ROE News on 7/19/2016 6:23 AM
The pan-European regional assessment under UNEP’s sixth Global Environment Outlook (GEO-6) has been presented to the Portuguese Minister of Environment and other government officials.

Following its launch last month, outreach work has continued with a presentation of the report’s process and key findings at an open event organized by the General Secretariat of Portugal’s Environment Ministry in Lisbon, Portugal on 28 June 2016.

The report identifies air pollution and climate change as now being the two major threats to human health in the pan-European region and was presented in the Portuguese capital following World Environment Day – UNEP’s biggest event for awareness raising on the environment.

The Secretary General of Environment Alexandra Carvalho opened the session, which was attended by around 40 people at the General Secretariat of Portugal’s Environment Ministry, including government staff and representatives of the...
By ROE News on 7/13/2016 2:13 AM
As the Solar Impulse plane completes its journey around the globe without fuel, watch one of its pilots and UNEP Goodwill Ambassador Bertrand Piccard deliver an inspiring live video message to environment ministers here.  

Mr Piccard was speaking to ministers at the eighth Environment for Europe Conference taking place in Batumi, Georgia on 7-9 June. There, over 100 pledges for a Green Economy on topics such as food waste and energy efficiency were made by countries and organisations “Be ambitious and use the solutions we have today,” he stressed, calling for the legal framework to be put in place "to change the world" and slash global emissions.  

“Normally at conferences we would not speak of pledges, we would only repeat problems. Yet now we have the opportunity to speak of solutions - and this is exactly what we need,” said Piccard,...
By ROE News on 7/4/2016 7:29 AM
A television campaign commissioned by UNEP showing how organic food is the natural choice for people and the environment has been crowned a winner at the Deauville Green Awards.

The series of ads feature a doe, badger and rabbit choosing organic over conventional food and was prized with the Golden Green award under the competition’s Responsible consumption and eco-labels category. They were produced by the Geneva-based Pointprod company.

The Deauville Green Awards is an international festival involving films, documentaries and ads on sustainable development and ecology assessed by an international jury of communication and environment specialists. The fifth edition of the event took place in the Normandy town on 16-17 June.

Choosing to eat organic means opting for a healthier and more varied diet,...
By ROE News on 6/28/2016 7:31 AM
A variety of national stakeholders from Albania have today gathered in the country’s capital to prepare a project proposal to fight land degradation with support from UNEP’s Regional Office in Vienna. 

The meeting for the project, titled ‘Promoting Sustainable Land Management In Albania Through Integrated Restoration Of Ecosystems,’ was organized by the Albanian Ministry of Environment with support from UNEP’s Vienna office.

Land degradation is a significant threat to Albania’s socio-economic and environmental wellbeing. The project is therefore designed to support the widespread adoption of Sustainable Land Management (SLM) activities in the country and will support the achievement of SDG15: Life on Land.

Today’s kick-off meeting brought together representatives from all relevant governmental, public and scientific institutions, international organizations, as well as non-governmental organizations to share experiences and...
By ROE News on 6/27/2016 1:59 AM
Solheim pledges to tackle major environmental issues such as ocean and air pollution, climate change, and nexus between conflict, migration and the environment

Nairobi, 27 June 2016 - Erik Solheim, a former Minister of Environment and International Development in Norway, began his tenure today as Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme, with the concurrent position of UN Under-Secretary-General. Mr. Solheim assumes his new role as chief of the global authority on the environment after three years as head of the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

In taking up office, Solheim pledged to work with countries around the world to tackle some of the most pressing environmental challenges of our time, including ocean and air pollution, the destruction of ecosystems, climate change and the relationship between the environment and conflict and migration.

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By ROE News on 6/17/2016 1:37 AM
Europe’s largest electric vehicle rally has made a pit stop at the Palais des Nations in Geneva after travelling 1300 km in a bid to spur action and ambition for the fight against climate change.

The rally was initiated by UNEP Champion of the Earth Louis Palmer and the welcoming of cars in Geneva on 3 June was led by UNDP.

Around 100 electric cars travelled from the German town of Bremerhaven and parked in front of the Palais to form the number ‘1.5’. The Paris Agreement  on climate change last year bound countries to “pursue efforts” to  limit global warming to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial times.

“140 participants with 70 cars have visited 50 cities to deliver a simple but powerful message - yes, we have a problem with climate change and fossil fuels, but we have many pioneering solutions, and we can indeed limit warming at 1.5C,” stressed Mr Palmer – founder and organiser of the World Advanced...
By ROE News on 6/14/2016 11:37 PM
A media masterclass organised under the EU-funded Greening Economies in the European Union’s Eastern Neighbourhood (EaP GREEN) programme has helped equip 31 journalists from the six Eastern Partnership countries with techniques and skills for reporting on Green Economy topics.

Journalists not only educate the general public on important environment and climate related issues, but also question statements by decision makers and play a role in holding them to account.

The masterclass featured an interactive session with renowned former BBC journalist Alex Kirby, who stressed that he was “not here to tell you how to write stories, but to share my experience of mistakes so that you too can learn from them”.

During the event, the reporters were first briefed on EaP GREEN activities with practical project results in their countries, the Environment for Europe process and the main conference...
By ROE News on 6/14/2016 11:30 PM
UNEP is to support Georgia in its efforts to tackle land degradation and associated threats to food production under a new Global Environment Fund (GEF) project launched  at the Environment for Europe conference.

Under an agreement signed on 8 June by UNEP Deputy Executive Director Ibrahim Thiaw and the Georgian Minister for the Environment and Natural Resources Protection Gigla Agulashvili, UNEP will help Georgia to mainstream sustainable land management into agricultural production in the country through institutional and regulatory reforms, technical support, demonstration projects and capacity building. The agreement was signed in the margins of the eighth Environment for Europe Ministerial Conference being held in Batumi, Georgia from 8-10 June. 

The Georgian Ministry of Environment Protection and Natural Resources Protection rates 35 % of its agricultural land as being degraded and, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, 60% of agricultural land in Georgia  is of low or middle production...
By ROE News on 6/12/2016 11:25 PM
Batumi, Georgia, 12 June 2016 – The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) stands ready to support countries from the pan-European region in their transition to Green Economies after over 100 pledges for concrete actions were made by 36 governments and organisations tying in with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Ministers from the region adopted the Batumi Initiative on Green Economy (BIG-E) made up of the voluntary pledges and a strategic framework for guiding them at the eighth Environment for Europe Ministerial Conference taking place in the Georgian city from 8-10 June.

Countries also endorsed the Batumi Action for Cleaner Air plan to fight air pollution, which UNEP’s sixth Global Environment Outlook for the region - also launched at the conference - identified as currently...

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