IEA Training Manual - Module 1

6. GEO Products

As of 2007, GEO products are available on the Internet (www.unep.org/geo) and include:

  • Global assessments (GEO-1, GEO-2000 and GEO-3)
  • Regional and sub-regional Reports (see Box 2)
  • Technical Reports
  • GEO education products

UNEP has published three volumes of the comprehensive GEO report series: GEO-1 in 1997, GEO-2000 (GEO-2) in 1999 and GEO-3 in 2002 prior to the World Summit on Sustainable Development. The IEA process based on the GEO approach has been used for many regional, sub-regional, national and sub-national assessments. The findings of the GEO assessment have also been used to produce youth and meeting reports, capacity building materials and associated products responding to specific user needs. The wide range of IEA outputs reflects the diversity and reach of the GEO assessment process. The GEO Cities reports underscore the “portability” of the GEO approach to other levels and to cover both ecosystem and socio-economic contexts. This portability to different spatial and organizational scales underlines the robust nature of the GEO approach that is unique among global environmental assessment approaches.

The compilation of core global data sets is a crucial element of the long-term GEO strategy, because reliable and accessible data must be the basis for integrated environmental assessments. The GEO Data Portal, which is the authoritative source for the global data sets used in UNEP’s GEO reports, has been developed by DEWA-Europe in consultation with DEWA HQ, guided by the GEO Data Working Group (http://www.geodata.grid.unep.ch).

Box 2: Regional Reports

2006
  • Africa Environment Outlook 2
2005
  • Atlantic and Indian Oceans Environment Outlook
  • Caribbean Environment Outlook
  • Pacific Environment Outlook
2003
  • Andean Environment Outlook
  • Latin America and the Caribbean Environment Outlook 2003 (English/Spanish)
2002
  • Africa Environment Outlook
  • North America’s Environment
  • Brazil Environment Outlook
  • Caucasus Environment Outlook
2000
  • Latin America and the Caribbean Environment Outlook
1999
  • Western Indian Ocean Environment Outlook
  • Pacific Islands Environment Outlook

The portal, discussed in more detail in Module 4, provides online access to more than 400 statistical and geographical data sets at national, sub-regional, regional and global levels. The data sets are compiled mostly from primary sources, and cover a broad range of environmental and socio-economic themes. State-of-the-art functionality for online data visualization and exploration is available for creating graphs, tables and maps. Initiated in 2000, the GEO Data Portal is continuously maintained, updated and improved. Regional adaptations of the global portal are being developed.

Indirect products of the GEO process include a worldwide network of collaborating centres, and working groups to support the process on issues such as data, capacity building and policy analysis.

Discussion Questions

  1. Which regions have received the most/least coverage in regional GEO processes? What are possible reasons for the different levels of coverage?
  2. Why is it important to have a GEO process dedicated to and involving young people?

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