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Environment

UNECE, OECD, the EU and partners join forces to reduce chemical and industrial accident risks across borders and sectors

From the Sandoz chemical spill of 1986 in Schweizerhalle, Switzerland, to the rupture of a dam storing mine tailings containing cyanide in Baia Mare, Romania, 2000; and last year in Beirut, the explosion of ammonium nitrate stored in warehouse near residential areas, what these chemical and industrial accidents have in common is their devastating impact on people and the environment and that they could have been prevented.

UNECE 55th environmental performance review underway in Azerbaijan by a large and diverse international team of experts

UNECE is leading a large and diverse group of international experts carrying out the 55th Environmental Performance Review (EPR) since the establishment of the UNECE EPR Programme, 25 years ago. Azerbaijan has requested UNECE to review its environmental performance for a third time. To provide the groundwork for the review, a team of UNECE and international experts is participating in a mission to the country from 15 to 23 November 2021.

After COP26, we need less talk and more action

COP26 was a positive step forward in the fight against climate change, but as the UN Secretary General pointed out in his comments: “it is not enough. We must accelerate climate action to keep alive the goal of limiting the global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees.” The compromise deal reflects the interests, contradictions and political will in the world today.     

UN/OECD seminar to address ammonium nitrate risk management in follow-up to 2020 Beirut port explosion  

The Beirut port explosion in August 2020, caused by fire spreading across a storage area detonating a large amount of ammonium nitrate (AN), resulted in 300 deaths and 6,500 injuries, the displacement of about 300,000 people and severe damage to the port and city, including healthcare facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. The accident and subsequent disaster remain central to the economic and political crises facing Lebanon. It has compounded multiple disasters, adding to socio-economic issues the country was already grappling with. The ongoing investigation into the explosion has increa

Countries in South-Eastern Europe commit to strengthen “joined-up”  land-use planning and industrial safety policies, harnessing UNECE instruments 

Increasingly frequent and intense extreme weather events due to climate change that can lead to industrial accidents and unchecked urban and regional development could together be a recipe for disaster, warn the UN and the governments of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia. 

Serbia pioneers National Policy Dialogue to strengthen Industrial Safety under UNECE Industrial Accidents Convention

Today, Serbia became the first country in the pan-European region to launch a National Policy Dialogue (NPD) on Industrial Safety, supported by UNECE in the framework of the Convention on the Transboundary Effects of Industrial Accidents (Industrial Accidents Convention). Since its accession to the Convention back in 2009, Serbia has progressively made progress in implementing the Convention’s key provisions – the NPD process will help the country advance towards full implementation.

Rapid response mechanism to protect environmental defenders established under the Aarhus Convention

A decision establishing a rapid response mechanism for the protection of environmental defenders was adopted by the Meeting of the Parties to the Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters (Aarhus Convention) at its seventh session in Geneva, on 21 October 2021.

Optimizing financing for transboundary water cooperation and basin development worldwide: a way to accelerate progress on SDG 6

Global estimates for financing needs for water-related investments to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 6 on water range from $6 .7 trillion by 2030 to $22.6 trillion by 2050, according to the OECD. Investments are needed not only to build new infrastructure but also to maintain and operate existing facilities and ensure the sustainable and cooperative management of water resources.