The United Nations (UN) is focusing its efforts on its most challenging global environmental issues facing the world today, through the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and a variety of other agencies and conventions.
Multilateralism is central to the United Nations’ environmental efforts. Environmental problems, from polluted air to dry spell to emission levels, don’t really recognize boundaries, so global solutions are required. For the past 50 years, UNEP has been working to protect the environment.
It most recently facilitated a historic resolution passed at the United Nations Environment Assembly in March 2022 to forge an international treaty agreement to stop plastic pollution. The United Nations General Assembly declared in July that everyone on the planet has a right to a clean environment, which should help environmental activists push environmentally destructive projects and policies. Both of these decisions demonstrate what is possible when governments collaborate.
Keeping an Eye on the Environment
Science is essential for environmental action. It informs policy and ensures that decisions have the greatest possible impact. As the world’s leading environmental organization, UNEP administers or serves as the secretariat for 15 Multilateral Environmental Agreements and other entities, including the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, and the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals.
Furthermore, UNEP co-founded the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) in 1988, which provides routine research point of view on climate change, its consequences, and possible future threats, as well as mitigation and adaptation options, to lawmakers. IPCC reports serve as the foundation for climate action in countries around the world.