News

News Center image

UNEP News Center

FOLLOW @uneprona

Rona_News

Hiking for health: connecting people with nature and each other

An initiative in Santa Monica, California aims to bring people together in nature to boost their health

Santa Monica is well known for its beautiful beaches, pleasant year-round climate, mountain ranges and hundreds of miles of hiking trails and bike paths.

Tourists certainly take advantage of this natural glory: 7.9 million people visited the city in 2014. It may be surprising, however, to hear that many of the city’s 92,000 residents don’t, with negative consequences for their physical and mental health.


UN Environment launches second online course on marine litter

Want to learn more about one of our most pressing environmental issues? Then sign up for UN Environment’s second massive open online course. The enrollment deadline has been extended to 8 June.


Formula E team up with UN Environment in race to improve inner-city air quality

23 May 2017 - Formula E, the world’s first fully-electric single-seater racing series, has joined forces with UN Environment to launch a global partnership in the fight to improve inner-city air quality – continuing to boost the profile of alternative energy solutions and the increased uptake of electric vehicles.


Tourism can help sustain biodiversity

The theme for this year’s International Day for Biological Diversity on 22 May is “sustainable tourism and biodiversity”.


New convention calls time on mercury poisoning

18 May 2017 – The world took a historic step forward in the fight against mercury poisoning today, as the European Union and seven of its member states (Bulgaria, Denmark, Hungary, Malta, the Netherlands, Romania and Sweden) ratified the Minamata Convention on Mercury, one of the world’s top ten chemical threats to health.


App brings marvels of tech and nature together to keep the world connected

The smartphone has probably done more to connect people than any other invention in history, making instant communication with family, friends and colleagues across the globe a piece of cake.

Take a quick count of the number of heads bowed over gadgets when you are next outside, however – if you can tear yourself away from your own phone, that is – and you will see it has done just as much to disconnect people from their immediate reality and the joys it can bring.


Big wins for human health, natural resources in switch to energy efficiency

12 May 2017 – A radical transformation in the way energy is supplied and used will be needed if the world is to meet its ambition of keeping global temperature increase to below 2 degrees Celsius, but the impacts of that transformation on the environment and on natural resources have been unclear.


In U.S. Capitol, children celebrate UN Global Road Safety Week

Washington, DC schoolchildren, parents, and community members gathered in the US Capitol to celebrate UN Global Road Safety Week and Bike to School Day. Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser shared her support for safe roads and clean air for children.

Read more.


New Atlas shows energy potential of Africa and opportunities for investment to meet Africa’s energy needs

May 4, 2017 – Energy consumption in Africa is the lowest in the world, and per capita consumption has barely changed since 2000 shows a new Atlas released today by the UN Environment and African Development Bank at the World Economic Forum being held in Durban, South Africa.


World Migratory Bird Day: A Healthy Planet for Migratory Birds and People

Bonn, 10 May 2017 - Migratory birds face an increasing number of threats while travelling huge distances. Their intercontinental flyways include key stopover sites that are essential for migratory birds to rest and refuel before continuing their journey. Celebrated in over 70 countries on or around 10 May, World Migratory Bird Day 2017 highlights the need for international cooperation to conserve migratory birds and their habitats for the benefit of mankind.


Pages

Rona_News

UN Biodiversity Conference results in significant commitments for action on biodiversity

December 18, 2016 - Governments agreed on actions that will accelerate implementation of global biodiversity targets, and enhance the linkage of the biodiversity agenda with other global agendas including the Sustainable Development Goals, the Paris Climate Agreement and others.


Indigenous Peoples: The unsung heroes of conservation

There are approximately 370 million indigenous peoples in the world. They own, occupy or use up to 22 percent of the global land area, which is home to 80 percent of the world’s biodiversity. Often overlooked by governments, their role in safeguarding territories from environmental degradation has largely gone unnoticed and undocumented until now. Read more. 


New Regional Representative Elected for North America

December 16, 2016 - Christian Ledwell of the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), has been elected as one of the two Regional Major Groups and Stakeholder Representative to UN Environment, North America. In addition, Scott Bohachyk, of UNA Canada, and Deirdre Laframboise of Canadian Climate Forum, were nominated to serve as alternates.


As countries rush to protect their seas, endurance swimmer Lewis Pugh calls to preserve the Antarctic

December 13, 2016 - Since April, the world has added an unprecedented 3.6 million square kilometres - an area larger than India - to the amount of ocean and sea covered by marine protected areas (MPAs), taking the global total coverage beyond 5 per cent for the first time in history.


Environmental crime threatening peace and security, finds new INTERPOL-UN Environment report

December 8, 2016 – More than 80 per cent of countries consider environmental crime a national priority, with the majority saying new and more sophisticated criminal activities increasingly threaten peace and security.

INTERPOL and UN Environment surveyed close to 70 countries for their new joint report, ‘Environment, Peace and Security – A Convergence of Threats’, released today at the Law, Justice and Development Week 2016 hosted by the World Bank in Washington DC.


Scientists shine a spotlight on the overlooked menace of nitrogen

December 5, 2016 - A new, USD $60 million global initiative launched at the International Nitrogen Initiative Conference in Melbourne, Australia, aims to spearhead integrated management of the nitrogen cycle for clean water and air, reduced greenhouse gas emissions, and better soil and biodiversity protection.


Six environmental leaders receive Champions of the Earth award - UN's top environmental prize

December 2, 2016 - Six inspirational environmental leaders representing government, research and grassroots action received today the United Nations' highest environmental accolade, the Champions of the Earth award, during a global conference on biological diversity in Cancún, Mexico.


Marking the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women

Gender, Violence and the Environment

When we turn on the tap, there is water. When we turn on the cook stove, there is fire. Such conveniences should not be taken for granted. For people living in rural areas providing water and energy for their basic needs is a daily struggle. Typically these chores falls primarily on women and girls, and the cost is high. Read full story. 


Enter #NotWasting video contest for your chance to win a trip to the first North American Workshop on Food Waste Reduction and Recovery in Toronto, Canada

November 23, 2016 - Is there an innovative way you’re #NotWasting food? Whether you are a consumer who buys food wisely and uses all leftovers, a grocery store that avoids rotting overstock, or a municipality that prevents food waste from ending up in landfills, we want to see your ideas for salvaging food before it becomes waste.


New Analysis Shows Scale of International Commitment to Tackle Illegal Wildlife Trade: Over $1.3 Billion Since 2010

November 17, 2016 - The Global Wildlife Program has released the first-ever review of international donor funding for combatting illegal wildlife trade in Africa and Asia, which shows that over $1.3 billion was committed by 24 international donors since 2010, or approximately $190 million per year.


Pages

Rona_News

Ottawa, Canada, 27 January 2016- United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Executive Director Achim Steiner visited Ottawa this week to deliver remarks at the memorial of Maurice Strong, Canadian diplomat and first Executive Director of UNEP, who passed away late last year. During his short visit, the Executive Director took the opportunity to meet briefly with Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion at the Canadian Parliament.


Davos, 21 January 2016 - A coalition of 30 international leaders launched their Champions 12.3 initiative at the World Economic Forum in Davos today to inspire ambitious action on reducing global food loss and waste.


London, 14 January - The UK is well-known as a major financial centre, but it is also a global hub in the fast-growing green finance arena, according to a new report released today by the UN Environment Programme's (UNEP) Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial system.


Geneva, 11 January 2016 - Close to 500 delegates from across the globe gathered in Geneva, Monday, to tackle crucial wildlife conservation and management issues that threaten the survival of a myriad of wild plants and animals.


Following the success of a new global climate agreement at COP21 in Paris, attention is now focusing on practical measures to mobilise the trillions necessary to deliver the transition to a low-carbon, green economy.


Nairobi, 14 December 2015 - The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) today launched the Environment and Trade Hub, an initiative which will assist countries to use sustainable trade as a vehicle for achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.


Nairobi, 14 December 2015 - The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) today launched the Environment and Trade Hub, an initiative which will assist countries to use sustainable trade as a vehicle for achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

UNEP Executive Director Mr. Steiner said, “UNEP is already working directly with many governments and other stakeholders to implement an inclusive green economy in countries across all continents.


Paris, 11 December 2015 - By promoting policies in favour of ecosystem-based adaptation in mountain regions, countries could build resilience and reduce the vulnerability of communities living in these high-altitude areas as well as that of millions of others living downstream, concluded a series of Mountain Adaptation Outlooks launched today by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP).


Paris, 10 December 2015 – Angola, which is seeking to conserve its biodiversity-rich wildlife and rebuild its elephant population, is to host the 2016 World Environment Day (WED) celebrations, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Angolan government announced today at the COP21 Climate Conference.


Paris, 10 December 2015 – Recognizing the link between climate change and human rights is an important step towards protecting the fundamental rights of communities across the planet, according to a new United Nations report presented at the Paris climate meeting today.


Pages

2014 News

Fast-Tracking Elimination of Production of Remaining Ozone-Depleting Substances Could Speed Up Ozone Layer Recovery by 11 Years

Nairobi, 19 December 2014 - The recovery of the ozone layer - the shield that protects life on Earth from harmful levels of ultraviolet rays - would come sooner if we were to fast-track the elimination of the production of the ozone-depleting substance (ODS) hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) and manage other ODSs that remain in equipment, building walls and chemical stockpiles, according to the full release of a report by nearly 300 scientists from 36 countries.


New Report Makes Strong Business Case for Using Safer Chemicals in Products and Supply Chains

Geneva, 15 December 2014 - Chemicals are all around us, present in the products we use every day.The demand for increased transparency on chemicals up and down the supply chain is growing - we need to understand how and with what chemicals we are interacting. Consumers, retailers and brands all want to know more, driving companies to disclose information about the hazardous chemicals in their products and to make safer choices.


World on Track to New Universal Climate Agreement with Lima Call for Climate Action

Lima, 14 December 2014 - A new 2015 agreement on climate change, that will harness action by all nations, took a further important step forward in Lima following two weeks of negotiations by over 190 countries.

Nations concluded by elaborating the elements of the new agreement, scheduled to be agreed in Paris in late 2015, while also agreeing the ground rules on how all countries can submit contributions to the new agreement during the first quarter of next year.


UNEP Launches Wastewater Video in the Series Two Minutes on Oceans with Jim Toomey

Washington, D.C., 9 December 2014 - The United Nations Environment Programme Regional Office for North America (UNEP RONA), UNEP Division of Environmental Policy Implementation (DEPI) and nationally-syndicated cartoonist Jim Toomey announced today the release of the video "Wastewater: A widespread threat and missed resource," which portrays the impacts of wastewater on coastal communities and ecosystems, and the benefits of improving its management. This new video is part of a series of innovative ocean awareness videos titled Two Minutes on Oceans with Jim Toomey.


Full Economic Potential of Carbon-Rich Mangroves Remains Untapped

Lima, December 9, 2014 - The economic and social benefits of mangroves - which are estimated to run into the hundreds of billions worldwide - remain largely untapped due to a lack of carbon finance mechanisms, appropriate policy interventions, and rapid mangrove deforestation, according to a new United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report launched today at the 20th Conference of the Parties on Climate Change.


Montreal Protocol Celebrates Landmark Achievement with Universal Ratification of All Amendments 

Nairobi, 08 December 2014 - Global efforts to protect the ozone layer have reached a major milestone after all of the Amendments to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer received universal ratification by 197 Parties. 


UN Says Global Carbon Neutrality Should be Reached by Second Half of Century, Demonstrates Pathways to Stay Under 2°C Limit

Washington D.C., 19 November 2014 - In order to limit global temperature rise to 2°C and head off the worst impacts of climate change, global carbon neutrality should be attained by mid-to-late century. This would also keep in check the maximum amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) that can be emitted into the atmosphere while staying within safe temperature limits beyond 2020, says a new report by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP).


UNEP and the Organization of American States Renew Joint-Efforts to Enhance Environmental Rule of law 

Washington D.C., 19 November 2014 - The UN South-South Cooperation Expo on enhancing cooperation for sustainable development served as the stage for the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between UNEP and the Organization of American States (OAS) designed to foster increased cooperation between the two organizations on the development and implementation of environmental rule of law for the promotion of sustainable development. 


UN Top Environment Award Announces 2014 Laureates

Nairobi/Washington D.C., 19 November 2014 - The Innovators and policymakers whose service to the environment is saving lives, improving livelihoods and bettering environmental governance and conservation were announced as recipients of the United Nation's highest environmental accolade, the Champions of the Earth Award.