Developing international environmental policy

Integrating environment and development in world decision-making
Forming coherent global environmental policies
The United Nations has played a vital role in fashioning a global programme designed to protect the environment, particularly by holding the "Earth Summit", the UN Conference on Environment and Development held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 following which all countries adopted Agenda 21 -- a blueprint to promote sustainable development or the concept of economic growth while protecting natural resources.

Reports on the state of the environment and/or health provide a useful basis for periodic reviews of policy. The value of such reporting as a policy guidance tool is enhanced if, in addition to providing factual information on the present and projected state of the environment and health, it explicitly reviews trends in the light of indicators of sustainability.

1. The Berlin Wall has disappeared, but large differences between East and West remain. Bringing the Central and Eastern European countries closer to the West - politically and economically - will bring great benefits to the environment as well.

2. We need a stronger environmental partnership between Europe and the United States.

3. An element of uncertainty is associated with most environmental policy measures. Indicators of policy effectiveness and underlying observing mechanisms are lacking everywhere, from local level initiatives to multilateral agreements. These deficiencies prevent the monitoring and assessment of policy performance.

Type Classification:
C: Cross-sectoral strategies