Disseminating results of scientific assessment of the environment in publicly accessible and understandable form

Communicating with the public and active dissemination of information are essential elements in the development and implementation of environmental policies. A well informed public is more able to participate effectively in decision-making and more likely to support policies designed to create a healthier environment. At the individual level, good communication can have direct environmental benefits, both by making members of the public aware of when and how to avoid exposure to hazards (e.g. ultraviolet radiation, tropospheric ozone, smog), and by dissuading them from environmentally destructive behaviour (e.g. driving cars in cities when cleaner public transport options are available).
This strategy features in the framework of Agenda 21 as formulated at UNCED (Rio de Janeiro, 1992), now coordinated by the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development and implemented through national and local authorities.

Agenda 21 recommends: (a) coordinating existing systems for gathering data and statistics relevant to developmental and environmental issues so as to support preparation of long-term scientific assessments - for example, data on resource depletion, import/export flow, energy use, health impact and demographic trends; (b) applying the data obtained through research into ecosystems, ecological processes and developmental impact to environment/development assessments at the global, regional and local levels; (c) promoting the wide distribution of these assessments in a form that is responsive to public needs and can be widely understood.

Type Classification:
G: Very Specific strategies
Related UN Sustainable Development Goals:
GOAL 15: Life on Land