Environmental Governance

The May 2007 publication from the Center for UN Reform Education: Global Environmental Governance: Perspectives on the Current Debate.

This book aims to make a contribution to the understanding of the current system of global environmental governance, its strengths and weaknesses, and the options and opportunities to achieve much needed reform.

Buy it online from the United Nations Bookshop or download via this link.

Latest Updates

Climate agreement reached at COP21 in Paris
by Jessica Kroenert, 15 January 2016
On 12 December 2015 in Paris, 195 nations reached what many are calling a landmark agreement on climate change at the 21st Conference of the Parties for the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, or COP21. In many ways, this conference was internationally unprecedented: it drew 150 heads of state to Paris in one day, the most of any UN event in history, and it marks the first time a universal climate agreement has been reached.

Conflicting opinions on finance
On 26 November 2008, Member States finished the extensive reading of the 23 July version of a draft resolution on strengthening environmental governance. As expected, the section on finances was the most controversial, with the G77 favoring additional resources, and most countries from the North expressing reservations in this regard.

Will a resolution to strengthen environmental activities be adopted this year?
by Lydia Swart, 10 November 2008
On 30 October, an informal meeting took place on the draft resolution “Strengthening the environmental activities in the United Nations system.” Member States provided feedback on the draft resolution made available on 23 July which was a revision of the 2 May original Chairmen’s version. This analysis explores the chances of this resolution being adopted by the end of this year.

Member States React to Draft
13 September 2008
On 12 September 2008, Member States reacted to the second draft of the resolution. Apparently, with the agreement of the new GA President, consideration of the draft will be extended into the new session with a deadline of 31 December to finish the consultations.

Co-Chairs Present Second Draft
23 July 2008
On 23 July, the Co-Chairs presented a revised draft resolution to be discussed in September.

Co-Chairs Present First Draft
28 May 2008
On 2 May 2008, Ambassadors Heller and Maurer presented a draft resolution on strengthening International Environmental Governance. On the 21st and 28th of May, as well as on 4 June, Member States provided feedback on the draft.

Additional Views From Member States on Options Paper to Strengthen International Environmental Governance
26 October 2007
On 10 September 2007, Member States had their first opportunity to respond to the Options Paper prepared by the Co-Chairs H.E. Mr. Claude Heller (Mexico) and H.E. Mr. Peter Maurer (Switzerland). On 26 October, a second round of responses took place in a well-attended meeting at the United Nations.

GA President Appoints Facilitators for Upcoming Consultations: Ambassadors Maurer and Heller to Continue
4 October 2007
On 4 October 2007 the President of the General Assembly H.E. Dr. Srgjan Kerim informed Member States that H.E. Ambassador Claude Heller of Mexico and H.E. Ambassador Peter Maurer of Switzerland have agreed to continue to serve as facilitators to take forward the consultations on International Environmetal Governance.

Growing Momentum in the GA to Strengthen International Environmental Governance – Member States Respond to Options Paper
11 September 2007
On 10 September 2007, Member States and Observers gathered at the General Assembly to respond to the Options Paper which was presented by the Co-Chairs of the Informal Consultations in June 2007.

Presentation of Options Paper by Co-Chairs of informal consultations on environmental activities
14 June 2007
The Options Paper, in the words of Co-Chair Peter Maurer, should be seen as a “flexible framework for decision-making” in regard to the UN’s environmental activities. The paper presents 7 building blocks constituting “ambitious incrementalism” to strengthen international environmental governance (IEG).

Update on GA's Consultations on Environmental Activities
15 February 2007
Ambassadors Enrique Berruga of Mexico and Peter Maurer of Switzerland, Co-Chairs of the Informal Consultations on environmental activities taking place at the GA, briefed delegations on their attendance at the Paris Conference for Global Ecological Governance and the Global Ministerial Environment Forum in Nairobi.

Consultations at UNGA on Environmental Activities Reach Critical Stage
by Lydia Swart, January 30, 2007
Now that the informal consultations at the General Assembly on the UN’s environmental activities are moving to the formulation of an Options Paper, it will become more evident whether there is sufficient political will to strengthen environmental governance at the global level.

For more on the background of Global Environmetal Governance, please see the following publication from the Center for UN Reform: