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Environmental Policy


Photo of mountain flowers in Central Asia

The environmental challenges in our region are many and interlinked. Air pollution caused some 600,000 deaths in 2012, and more than 100 million people still do not have access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation. Added to these, releases of hazardous chemicals, climate change, effective engagement of the public in decision-making and access to environmental information and justice are among major concerns we need to address urgently.
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50 years of UNECE - Environment

50 years of environment at UNECE

UNECE’s support to the Aral Sea region

In focus

#WaterAction – UN Water Convention receives major push at UN 2023 Water Conference

Forty-six years after the last similar conference, the 2023 UN Water Conference (New York, 22-24 March 2023) resulted in a Water Action Agenda and significantly increased momentum for transboundary water cooperation and UNECE’s instruments, the Water Convention and Protocol on Water and Health.

The UN Secretary-General urged countries to accede to the Water Convention, and Nigeria and Iraq followed the call and became Parties to the Water Convention during the Conference. 10 other countries expressed their willingness to accede and thereby committed to the sustainable management of their shared waters. More than 40 commitments on transboundary cooperation were submitted to the Water Action Agenda, also facilitated by the Transboundary water cooperation coalition. Now, the Water Action Agenda needs to be implemented - water needs to have a prominent role in upcoming processes (e.g. 2023 SDG Summit). The follow-up steps under the Water Convention will be discussed at the 18th meeting of the Working Group on Integrated Water Resources Management (Geneva, 19-21 June 2023) and at the tenth session of the Meeting of the Parties (Ljubljana, 23–25 October 2024).

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