What is the United Nations Environment Program?


Today at Way To Zero Waste we want to talk to you about the United Nations Environment Program, its purpose and the areas of work it focuses on.




What is the UN Environment Program?


The United Nations Environment Program (UN Environment Program) is the principal environmental representative within the United Nations (UN) system. It is an initiative that provides leadership and greater partnership among member countries for the defense of the environment.


What does this mean? In a nutshell, the United Nations Environment Program is the highest authority on environmental issues worldwide. As such, it is responsible for defining the guidelines that must be incorporated into the regulations of all countries with respect to the protection of our planet.




Why was the UN Environment Program created?


The program was created in 1972 by the UN General Assembly, following the recommendations of the Conference on the Human Environment, held in Stockholm the same year. In order to achieve its objectives, the UN Environment Program works with multiple partners, including non-governmental organizations, UN specialized agencies and funds, governments, civil society and representatives of the private sector.


The organization's authority is based on constant assessment of the state of the environment worldwide, ensuring that environmental problems receive appropriate attention from the international community. The program's responsibilities include:


  • Setting the global environmental agenda

  • Promoting the proper implementation of all UN-suggested actions on sustainable development.

  • Report, motivate and empower countries to improve the quality of life of their people without affecting future generations.

  • To defend the environment and each species that inhabits it.

  • To ensure the joint action of all the countries of the world for the care of the planet.



What areas of work does the program focus on?


The UN Environment Program's ongoing commitment to sustainability focuses on seven specific areas:

  • Climate Change: The program works on implementing dramatic changes with respect to risk mitigation, climate adaptation and clean air actions by governments.

  • Conflict and disasters: This area focuses on mitigating the causes and effects of natural disasters and war conflicts on the population.

  • Ecosystem management: The organization is responsible for caring for and restoring affected ecosystems, in addition to launching educational and awareness campaigns for people about caring for our planet.

  • Environmental governance: To protect our planet, there must be a regulatory framework focused on it. That is where this area comes in, by supporting institutions and legislative projects with environmental objectives.

  • Chemicals and waste: Due to the sustained growth in the use of chemicals in industry that negatively impact the health of ecosystems, the UN Environment Program has initiatives that support natural products, organic farming, recycling and reuse of waste, etc.

  • Resource efficiency: This group focuses on research and support for new sustainable technologies.

  • Environment under supervision: Through this area, the program aims to empower the world's governments to make sound decisions based on environmental issues.


Clearly, the UN Environment Program was created with the firm purpose of caring for the planet. However, the program's efforts will be in vain if we, the citizens, do not assume our responsibility and become aware of the coming changes.



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