20 – 24 February 2023

In Focus

UNECE convenes inter-agency group to coordinate assessment of environmental damage in Ukraine

"As part of the response to the massive setbacks for #sustainabledevelopment from 12 months of war the int'l community can come together to support to the Govt. of #Ukraine to identify & assess damage being done to the #environment, & necessary remediation measures" -  @algayerova "As part of the response to the massive setbacks for #sustainabledevelopment from 12 months of war the int'l community can come together to support to the Govt. of #Ukraine to identify & assess damage being done to the #environment, & necessary remediation measures" - @algayerova
In response to the huge impacts on the environment of the war in Ukraine, UNECE and partners, including UNEP, OECD, UNDP, UNIDO, the World Bank and OSCE, are joining forces to coordinate the assessment of environmental damage. The establishment of the group responds to the request by Ministers at the Ninth Environment for Europe Ministerial Conference held in Nicosia, Cyprus, in October 2022, to prioritize assessing the most urgent environmental needs in Ukraine, and to make recommendations to advance a sustainable recovery of the country, based on the results of ongoing and planned impact assessments, and the methodology of the UNECE Environmental Performance Review Programme.
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UNECE's Inland Transport Committee takes action to facilitate wider adoption of electric vehicles

Electrification of vehicles is an important tool to align the transport sector with a climate neutral future and achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. Focused on climate action, this year’s annual session of UNECE’s Inland Transport Committee (ITC) agreed on dedicated actions to facilitate the adoption electric vehicles (EVs) by working on policy harmonization, improving relevant data collection, and fostering global exchanges among experts in the public and private sector. As the ultimate UN regulatory platform for inland transport, ITC is uniquely placed to develop globally harmonized regulatory provisions to ensure safe, affordable and environmentally friendly use of EVs.

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Air pollution

New evidence shows impact of ozone, heavy metals and microplastics on natural vegetation and corps

While the impacts of air pollution on vegetation and crops are sometimes overlooked, they can take a high toll on food production. As the food and energy crises have recently shown the vulnerability of our food systems, the impacts of air pollution on agricultural yields and food production should be looked at carefully. The UNECE Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution has continuously improved the understanding of the impacts of air pollution on crops and other vegetation for more than 35 years through its International Cooperative Programme on Effects of Air Pollution on Natural Vegetation and Crops, led by the UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.
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Number of the week


Fight against climate change at the centre of Ministerial Declaration adopted by UNECE's Inland Transport Committee

In the declaration, ministers and heads of delegations from all United Nations regions request the secretariat of the Inland Transport Committee (ITC) to develop a strategy document on reducing greenhouse gas emissions in inland transport based on international UN legal instruments under its purview and to present it at the annual session next year. The declaration will give direction to the work of ITC as the UN platform for inland transport to deliver on climate change solutions and accelerate the transition to decarbonized mobility and net zero or low emissions in the sector.
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Australia signs UNECE Declaration on Gender-Responsive Standards Development

Australia has become the 81st signatory of the declaration, which aims to provide a practical framework for standards bodies seeking to make the standards they develop, and the standards development process they follow, gender responsive. Established in 2016, the initiative aims to strengthen the use of standards and technical regulations as powerful tools to attain SDG 5 (Achieve Gender Equality and Empower all Women and Girls); integrate a gender lens in the development of both standards and technical regulations; and elaborate gender indicators and criteria that could be used in standards development.
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Innovation Matters podcast 

How has innovation occurred throughout history and improved our life?

In the new episode of UNECE’s Innovation Matters podcast, Professor Arthur Diamond of the University of Nebraska at Omaha discusses how innovation occurred throughout history and how policies can be crafted to encourage innovative entrepreneurs to bring more innovation. In the first part of the interview, he takes the audience through a narrative of human progress through creative destruction, or innovative dynamism, and its benefits.
Listen to full episode
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