Efforts to carry out effective environmental activities require objective and up-to-date analytical information on the state-of-the-environment. This is most often achieved through the use of environmental indicators, which can provide a practical and economical way to track the state-of-the-environment. This information and data can in turn be tied to policy goals and provide a mechanism for tracking and evaluating policy implementation.
Today, a vast amount of environmental data on the state-of-the-environment, trends, pressures and drivers is being collected across the pan-European region, not only for policymakers but also to provide public access to data. The environmental indicators, maintained by the UNECE, are designed to answer key policy questions and serve as a basis for sound and informed policy-making. State-of-the-environment reports are key information products for many UNECE countries.
UNECE has developed a list of environmental indicators in collaboration with the Working Group on Environmental Monitoring and Assessment (WGEMA) and the Joint Task Force on Environmental Statistics and Indicators (JTF). In June 2007, the Working Group and Joint Task Force agreed on a list of environmental indicators under the following thematic areas:
|Air pollution and ozone depletion
|Land and soil
The Working Group on Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, at its 7th session in November 2007 agreed upon the texts of:
(a) Online Guidelines for the Application of Environmental Indicators
(b) Guidelines for the application of environmental indicators in EECCA
(c) Guidelines for the preparation of indicator-based environment assessment reports
(d) Recommendations to Governments of EECCA countries for the application of environmental indicators and the preparation of indicator-based environmental assessment reports