United Nations Environment Programme


environment for development

   
  Phase 1: 2001-2002 (Origins in the IEG process and the recommendation to strengthen the scientific base of UNEP)
The Science Initiative has its origins in the International Environmental Governance (IEG) process that commenced in February 2001 when the 21st Session of the UNEP Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum endorsed decision 21/21 that called for a greatly strengthened institutional structure for international environmental governance based on an assessment of future needs for an institutional architecture that has the capacity to effectively address wide-ranging environmental threats in a globalizing world.

Decision 21/21 also established an Open-ended Intergovernmental Group of Ministers or Their Representatives on International Environmental Governance to report on improving coherence in international policy making, improving the effectiveness of multilateral environmental agreements and enhancing the role of UNEP.

In its final report (UNEP/IGM/5/2 of 16 January 2002) the Open-ended Intergovernmental Group recommended that: Further consideration should be given to strengthening UNEP's scientific base by improving its ability to monitor and assess global environmental change including, inter alia, i.a. through the establishment of an intergovernmental panel on global environmental change. The effective participation of developing countries in the work of the panel should be ensured, and the mandate, modalities and composition of any mechanism are to be decided by the Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum.

This report was adopted by decision SS.VII/2 endorsed at the 7th Special Session of UNEPs Governing Council held in Cartagena, Colombia, in 2002. In the same decision the Governing Council decided to review the implementation of the recommendations contained in the report of the Open-ended Intergovernmental Group of Ministers or Their Representatives on International Environmental Governance at its twenty-second session, subject to the outcome of the World Summit on Sustainable Development; and also decided to consider further measures for the strengthening of the United Nations Environment Programme in light of the outcome of the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD).

In follow-up to the 7th Special Session, the UNEP secretariat developed a concept paper on the intergovernmental panel on global environmental change and this was presented (UNEP/GC.22/4/Add.1) by the Executive Director to the 22nd Session of UNEPs Governing Council (GC.22) held in Nairobi, 3-7 February 2003

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