Zoï Books are produced for the United Nations, the European Union, regions, countries and a growing community of readers world-wide. We closely cooperate with GRID-Arendal in providing environmental information for decision-making.
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Zoï and the Toxic Remnants of War Project have published an update of the environmental situation in war-torn eastern Ukraine. These three maps show the latest environment-related developments in Donbas, including fresh attempts to carve environmental policy on both sides of the line of contact.
The Strategic Framework for Adaptation to Climate Change in the Neman River Basin has been developed in the course of implementation of the International Project “River Basin Management and Climate Change Adaptation in the Neman River Basin”. The main goal of the Project is to improve the integrated management of water resources using the basin approach in the climate change context, on the example of the Neman River.
Coordination between the water, energy, food and environment sectors is fraught with difficulties at the national level and the complexity increases substantially in transboundary basins. The “nexus approach” to managing interlinked resources has emerged as a way to enhance water, energy and food security by increasing efficiency, reducing trade-offs, building synergies and improving governance, while protecting ecosystems.
This publication contains the results of nexus assessment of the Syr Darya River Basin, shared by Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, that has been carried out in the framework of the UNECE Water Convention’s programme of work for 2013–2015.
Water for Life
Pollution and Waste
This report presents the key findings of the research initiative “Drones in Humanitarian Action” (by the Swiss Foundation for Mine Action (FSD) in partnership with CartONG, UAViators and Zoï Environment Network), which examines different uses of drones for humanitarian operations. The in-depth report is based on 14 case studies from 10 countries, as well as expert consultations, stakeholder meetings and a survey of humanitarian professionals in 61 countries.
Belarus is one of the most important transit countries for gas and oil as it offers the shortest route between the Russian gas and oil fields and the main Western European markets. Most of the country’s pipeline system was built in the mid-to-late 1960s and now faces widespread technical renovation. The environmental safety of pipelines crossing Belarus has been an issue for the country’s environmental authorities, the civil society and the neighbouring states.
Within the framework of Environmental and Security Initiative (ENVSEC) the international project, “Environmental Safety of Oil and Gas Pipelines in Belarus”, has been implemented by Zoï Environment Network on behalf of the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) and in cooperation with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).
SDC has started a dialogue to address the linkages between climate change, environment and disaster risks on the one hand, and migration and economic development on the other. The dialogue includes thematic inputs, e-discussions and a workshop organized in Morocco in March 2016, with a particular focus on North Africa. This brief focuses on the climate change/environment and migration nexus and synthesizes the main findings from this process to date, including the relevant literature. While addressing this nexus in general, this brief has a specific focus on North Africa and explores different types of migration.
EuBike is a project and joint community for cyclists and tourism providers – its main objective is to bring these groups together in order to support the development of cyclotourism. The Transferability Manual describes the EuBike project components and suggests concrete possibilities for the future transferability, replicability and up-take of the project methods and outcomes, both within the cycle tourism sector and for other sectors and user groups.
This publication, which includes Zoï graphics, is an advance executive summary of the study «Riding towards the green economy: cycling and green jobs» by the UNECE Transport, Health and Environment Pan-European Programme (THE PEP). It is the first attempt to collect evidence on the number of cycling-related jobs from cities using a standardized approach in the pan- European region. We have received data and information from 37 cities or regions in 15 countries in the region.
The Strategic Framework for Adaptation to Climate Change in the Dniester River Basin is the result of joint efforts by international experts and organizations – the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) – and experts and organizations from Moldova and Ukraine with an interest in the protection and sustainable use of natural resources in the transboundary Dniester River basin under the conditions of a changing global climate. On the basis of research and extensive consultations, the Strategic Framework for Adaptation offers a set of measures, the joint and coordinated implementation of which will make it possible to respond to the coming changes in a timely manner and even to get out ahead of the process.
The overall objective of the project is to support the further implementation of SEIS principles and practices in the six Eastern Partnership countries. This project builds on the achievements and results of the previous cooperation activities under the ENPI-SEIS1 project (implemented over the 2010-2015 period) and aims to further develop the capacities of the relevant authorities in the areas of:
To document the existing practice and use of drones in humanitarian settings and to understand the best use scenarios, past deployments have been evaluated and documented in short write ups. In particular, deployments by the World Bank, Humanitarian OpenStreetMap, IOM, Medair and UAViators are featured. The aim is to share the learnings with the greater humanitarian community to facilitate an understanding of potential use cases and best applications. Further case studies on delivery and search and rescue drones will be available shortly. The publication of these documents is part of the DG ECHO funded Initiative on Drones in Humanitarian Action, implemented by FSD in collaboration with CartONG, UAViators, and Zoi Environment Network.
Dentistry may not be the first use of mercury that comes to mind when considering this heavy metal. Nevertheless the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Global Mercury Assessment 2013 revealed that mercury in dental use amounts to some 10% of global mercury consumption overall, and over 20% of global mercury consumption in products. Due to growing concern regarding impacts of mercury on the environment, governments decided to negotiate a legally binding instrument on mercury, and the text of the Minamata Convention on Mercury was completed and adopted in 2013, one of the key provisions being the requirement for countries to phase down their use of dental amalgam. Based on official country responses to a UNEP survey questionnaire, this report presents a range of measures already taken by some countries in pursuit of their objectives to phase down or entirely eliminate the use of dental amalgam. It is intended that these examples may inspire and instruct other countries’ efforts.
These maps in Russian and Ukrainian display flood risks in the Dniester river delta and around Mohyliv-Podolskyi.
Dniester river basin (Russian, jpg):
Mohyliv-Podilskyi (Ukrainian, jpg):
Russian-language maps created for the project "Environment and security in Belarus" – assessing and monitoring floods in the Pripyat river basin.
Risk maps (jpg):
Probable damage maps (pdf):
The Global Waste Management Outlook (GWMO) is the result of two years' work and provides the first comprehensive global overview of the state of waste management around the world in the 21st century. It is an important and timely status report and call for action to the international community.
This publication, for which Zoï has provided innovative maps and infographics, contains the results of nexus assessments that have been carried out within the UNECE Water Convention’s programme in the Alazani/Ganykh in the Caucasus, the Sava in South- Eastern Europe and the Syr Darya in Central Asia. The nexus assessments describe the characteristics of such resources as water, food and land, energy and ecosystem services, as well as their governance. Graphics illustrate the links identified. Climate change and socioeconomic drivers, and their effects on intersectoral dynamics, are also considered. Finally, a broad range of beneficial response actions are outlined. Such solutions to the nexus include institutions, information, instruments, infrastructure as well as international coordination and cooperation.
Zoï, in close collaboration with the Regional Environmental Centre of Central Asia, is pleased to release a visual atlas of selected environmental indicators and priorities in Central Asia. The report was developed within the EU-funded FLERMONECA project, and covers air and water quality, biodiversity, mountains and deserts. We are proud that it was produced in the region mainly with locally available data, skills and expertise.
This examination of the environment and security nexus in the South Caucasus comes a decade after an initial assessment that raised awareness about the risks of environmental degradation in a region at the brink of economic boom and littered with ethno-territorial conflicts. The consensus at that time was that environmental cooperation had the potential to build confidence and eventually to help resolve conflict. Since 2004, there were setbacks within the overall geopolitical situation in the Southern Caucasus with an open conflict between Russia and Georgia in 2008 and very little progress in resolving the so-called frozen conflicts. The aim of this study, which analyzes the 2014-2015 situation, is to reinterpret the environment and security paradigm, and one of the study’s main findings is that despite the fragility of the region, new social movements may provide unexpected opportunities for progress.
These Safety Guidelines and Good Industry Practices for Oil Terminals are designed to prevent incidents at oil terminal facilities and to limit the consequences for human health and the environment should they occur. They are based extensively on accepted and published good practice procedures to ensure conformity with international standards.
The safety guidelines and good practices, as presented in this publication, were endorsed by the Conference of the Parties to the Industrial Accidents Convention and by the Meeting of the Parties to the Water Convention). Both bodies encouraged Parties and other ECE member States to disseminate the guidelines for use by the appropriate authorities. The guidelines have been reissued in 2014 to update the references and provide a basis for their application throughout the region, following their review by the Joint Expert Group on Water and Industrial Accidents. Authorities, pipeline operators and the public are invited to apply these guidelines and good practices, which are intended to contribute to limiting the number of pipeline accidents and the severity of their consequences for human health and the environment.
What can ordinary people do for the environment? This is a short video explaining the concept of 'green economy’ to the broad public in Belarus, in Belarusian with English subtitles. Prepared in Minsk through the 'Ecoproject Partnership’ NGO, Zoï’s partner in the media and awareness component of the Environment and Security initiative’s project in Belarus. The video was launched at the National Environmental Forum in Minsk on 20 May 2015.
A pilot project on SEIS for Lake Sevan, Armenia was implemented by the European Environment Agency and Zoï Environment Network. The results of the project, which included the collection of environmental data and visualization of the lake, are described in this brochure (in English and Armenian).
In addition Zoï has helped extend to the Caucasus the coverage of Europe's main environmental dictionary:
Environmental information for decision-makers is a leitmotif of Zoï’s activities. Our comparative advantage in the market is that we know the complex themes and geographies, and we have the skills to communicate in words, pictures and maps. We cannot escape the trend of society’s increasing taste for fast food: environmental information that goes down easy. In this sense our vital graphics and visual syntheses are highly appreciated around the world.
We are not only resisting this trend. On the contrary, we are fully embracing today’s possibilities for producing and disseminating animated content: in 2014 Zoï screened animations at such major events as the Climate Change COP20 in Lima and the Annual Swiss Development Cooperation Conference in Geneva. Although none of our films has gone viral so far (what environmental content does?), animations are proving to be a good way to integrate texts, maps and graphics to convey our messages in a powerful way. Zoï animations are rooted in our handmade and locally produced tradition.
Projects, trends, results and challenges, not forgetting about comics - all in the Annual Report 2014.
The quarrying of raw materials – such as limestone, shale, sand and gravel – for cement and aggregates production poses significant risks to biodiversity and ecosystems. Building Materials companies and policy makers must work together to find solutions that balance the needs of society, business and nature.
Drawing on the lessons and experience of a multi-year engagement with Holcim, a leading supplier of cement and aggregates, IUCN has developed a series of guidance documents that address the risks and opportunities for biodiversity and ecosystems from quarrying for cement and aggregates. These documents emphasise the distinct but complementary roles that governments and businesses have to play in the conservation and sustainable use of natural resources.
Over the last four years, the European Union has been engaging the countries of the Eastern Partnership - Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine – in regional cooperation with the aim to improve national capacities for managing and sharing environmental data and information. The Synthesis Report, available in English and Russian, presents the outcomes of this cooperation, implemented in the framework of the project ‘Towards a Shared Environmental Information System in the European Neighbourhood’, funded by the European Commission and implemented by the European Environment Agency with the assistance of Zoi Environment Network.
On March 2nd, the European Environment Agency published ‘The European environment – state and outlook 2015’ (SOER 2015), a five-year integrated assessment of Europe’s environment. Zoï has assisted the EEA by providing analysis and visualisation of 11 global megatrends - social, economic, political, environmental and technological changes - that are considered of key importance for Europe’s long-term environmental outlook.
This snapshot assessment of environmental damage to the Donbas region in Eastern Ukraine, plagued throughout much of 2014 with fighting that still continues, was prepared through cooperation between Zoï Environment Network and the Kyiv-based East Ukraine Environment Institute. To assess the situation and compile the map, the experts used the best available information from governmental and other sources and media reports, as well as their own data, judgements and direct interviews with the affected enterprises and areas. As new data are being collected, this remains work in progress.
Surface water in Central Asia is a vital resource, and is particularly sensitive to climate change. The Chu River (in Kazakhstan it is called the Shu) and the Talas River flow through Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. These rivers support the livelihoods of more than 3 million people, and are the major sources of water used in agriculture. The interests of the two countries in the sharing of these rivers calls for cooperation – a common approach to management, a rational use of water resources and in the face of future climate change, the development of joint actions on adaptation.
The project, “Strengthening cooperation on adaptation to climate change in transboundary basins of the Chu and Talas Rivers”, has made an attempt to combine the joint management of transboundary water resources and the development of recommendations on adaptation to climate change.
Maps, photographs, general and practical information - this Russian-language guide to Crimea’s natural protected areas, written with Zoï input and published at the beginning of 2014, presents the nature of different parts of the peninsula as well as practical information on how wondering individuals and tourist groups can access and enzoi them.
This collection of cartoons illustrates how Afghanistan and Tajikistan cooperate on various environmental issues. Different aspects of this collaboration and the challenges which arise from it are shown in a reader-friendly way through the use of drawings, symbols and explanatory captions.
What are the results of Swiss climate change cooperation over the past 12 years, and how efficient have Swiss climate projects been? Zoï was tasked, together with its partners Gaia Consulting Oy and Creatura Ltd, to assess the effectiveness of Switzerland’s international cooperation in climate change and reviewed more than 500 projects by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs. The focus of Zoï’s work was to distil the key findings of the assessment into a report for policy-makers and a short animated film for a larger public. The report was launched at the SDC/SECO Annual conference in Geneva on August 29, 2014.
The project aims at reinforcing dialogue and cooperation on climate change between the European Union and the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean countries; supporting the transition of partner countries towards low carbon development and climate resilience. Zoi has supported ClimaSouth outreach work, such as handbooks on climate issues and other communication products.
The transboundary Chu and Talas Rivers, with total annual discharge of some 8 km3, originate in the mountains of Kyrgyzstan. The main water source is seasonal snowpack but glacial melt also contributes importantly to the flow. Exposure to climate-induced extreme events, dependence on natural resources and low adaptive capacity all make the region vulnerable to climatic variability and change. Using a common approach for the Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan parts of the basins, scientists analysed the observed long-term trends, variability and projections of future climateand hydrology of the Chu and Talas river basins, and then elaborated the historical, current and forecast demands and main uses of water in the basins.
The increasing stress from a changing climate makes good dialogue across borders vital. Inside the countries, too, entirely new approaches are needed to avoid confrontation and find compromises — if not consensus — when it comes to sensitive environmental, resource and social issues. And it is especially this dimension of work — building bridges among the states and their various groups — that requires continuous international support, resources and expertise. Zoi environment network is one of players on that field.
The year's highlights, budget transparency, zoïstory and cartoons – all of this in our Annual Report 2013.
Are you working on land use or conservation policies? Or landscape-level programmes? Perhaps you are involved in the forest, agriculture or energy sector? Are you interested in exploring the potential for restoration and carbon sequestration in your country? Maybe you have been asked to take part in an FLR assessment? Or maybe you are simply curious to learn more about what this is all about.
Zoï has helped IUCN publish a highly visual methodology handbook '"Assessing forest landscape restoration opportunities at the national level". The goal is producing support for restoration and coming to a common vision of how degraded and deforested landscapes can be transformed into healthy and productive systems.
This report presents achievements of the ENVSEC (UNECE/OSCE/UNEP) project “Transboundary Co-operation and Sustainable Management in the Dniester River Basin: Phase III – Implementation of the Action Programme”. The activities were focused on developing and signing the Dniester River Basin Treaty between Moldova and Ukraine, transboundary water monitoring, fish fauna conservation, information sharing on the basin level, public awareness, and reducing vulnerability to extreme floods and climate change. The publication also provides recommendations for further activities in the Dniester river basin.
The goal of the “Reducing vulnerability to extreme floods and climate change in the Dniester river basin” project is to reduce the risks of possible consequences of climate change, identify the most vulnerable areas in the Dniester river basin and improve adaptation capacity in Ukraine and Moldova. This study in particular is aimed at analyzing and discussing the capacity for information exchange on flood risks and timely warnings to the population.
In the framework of the "Access2Mountain" project on Sustainable Mobility and Tourism in Sensitive Areas of the Alps and the Carpathians, Zoi has prepared a study on traffic flows and possible solutions in Eastern Serbia (Timok region) for the European Academy Bolzano (EURAC). The study describes the overall geographic, environmental, transport and tourism setting of the region, based on policy documents and data collected from national, district and local level sources in Serbia. The study analyses existing and potential capacities and deficiencies of transport related to tourism in the Timok region, and proposes alternatives for the future.
In close cooperation with UNEP and the ENVSEC initiative, Zoï has compiled a highly visual report summarizing the innovative work the Environment and Security (ENVSEC) initiative has conducted in the Balkans during the last 5 years. Understanding the health and environmental risks arising from mining legacies is crucial for future decision-making, but simply knowing that the risks exist is not sufficient: providing solutions on how to reduce risks and enhance cooperation is also important. Therefore, ENVSEC wanted to create regional examples that provide realistic options on how these risks can be minimized with cost-efficient interventions that can be replicated across the region. These example sites are now being used as educational tools where experts, students and others can get in touch and acquire an understanding of what has been done, and can then apply their knowledge in similar projects in other locations.
This report provides a synthesis of the available information on waste and chemicals in Central Asia, presented primarily in a visual format intended to help educators, students and decision makers in the mining, energy, chemistry, agriculture, municipal, health, environmental and other relevant sectors understand the scale and complexities of the task ahead. It was prepared by experts to communicate selected hotspots, challenges and successes to national, regional and international audiences.
Zoï has contributed to UNECE water assessments and helped facilitate implementation of UNECE and United Nations conventions in Central Asia. Based on its previous work with Afghanistan, Zoï was invited to assist in the facilitation of the Afghan-Tajik cooperation process. In the development of this atlas, Zoï’s special talents for presenting environmental issues visually have been of particular value.
Economic development and natural resource management are top priorities for cooperation between the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Republic of Tajikistan. For both countries the adequate knowledge and sharing of information about natural resources and hazards are important.
With 100 photos and 50 maps and graphics based on official sources and original research, this well-illustrated atlas presents information at the river basin – as opposed to the national – level, and portrays challenges from the regional rather than the country perspective. With the objective of supplementing information already available in each of the countries, the atlas is designed to help local policymakers and experts as well as readers outside the region, donors and the international community understand the basin’s natural resources, common needs and priorities. It starts with brief introductions to the countries, illustrates the Amu Darya River basin as a part of the Aral Sea basin and provides details on the Upper Amu Darya.
Today, environmental crimes amount to more than $100 billion a year. Those high-profit, low-risk crimes are destroying ecosystems, dramatically impacting on climate change and devastating local economies. Nevertheless, they are extremely hard to fight as they are constantly hidden within legal Environmental crimes are not soft crimes. They often occur in countries with a high rate of corruption involving violence and impacting directly on the poorest population. Environmental crimes take full advantage of the financial opacity (tax havens, e.g.) and the weakness of the worldwide transportation system trade, take advantage of tax havens and are mostly controlled by huge criminal organizations such as mafias or illegitimate firms. This brochure provides an overview of the situation, identifies some of the most important points and suggests ways to fight against this global threat.
Even though Zoï has existed in a different body since middle 1990s or early 2000s, depending on how one counts, formally we came to our Swiss being in 2009. Yet four years is a long time for a start-up: many die before, others finally take a deep breath and start to reflect upon what they really are.
Just as they did with our previous body – GRID-Arendal in Norway – people may see us differently, depending on what they are ready to see. Some believe that Zoï is a cool (not always cheap) design studio, while others see us as artists, scientists, travel agents, fixers and handymen. We are also donors, propagandists, agitators and missionaries. But one thing is certain: without inventing, writing, illustrating and printing what we see as attractive and creative zoïbooks, we can not exist.
One other certain thing is that it is in the countries, cities and mountains, deserts and rivers that we find ideas and audiences for these books. It is there we hope to help build a different world and future by bringing to people what we know and believe in, and by carrying back from them to international Geneva the true meaning and inspiration for us to continue and grow.
This report is the most comprehensive assessment of global Mercury emissions and speaks directly to governments involved in the development of the global treaty on mercury. It presents updates from the UNEP Global Mercury Assessment 2013 in short and punchy facts and figures backed by compelling graphics, that provide governments and civil society with the rationale and the imperative to act on this notorious pollutant.
This report provides readers with an overview of the key environmental issues, factors and drivers of environmental change in Afghanistan, and highlights the latest achievements and prospects ahead. It is designed for both a national audience (Government officials, community leaders, and natural resource policy-makers at a central and local level) and the broader international community: donors and international organizations, policy-makers in neighbouring countries, people and institutes interested in Afghanistan.
Each chapter of the report gives an overview of the context, importance and use of natural resources, what is known about their current conditions, trends and linkages to regional or global factors. The report also reveals how Afghanistan’s natural resources – if managed in an efficient and sustainable manner – could provide the basis for future economic growth and stability.
The Environmental Atlas of the Dniester Basin is the first attempt to present the environmental state of the transboundary river in a visual format which includes over 30 thematic maps of the basin, graphics, diagrams and pictures. The target groups for the Atlas are specialists in environmental protection, as well as the authorities and the population in the Dniester basin.
The Atlas is further supported by the Dniester river basin geo-information system, designed to facilitate strategic and operational decisions in the basin including those related to implementing the New Dniester Basin Treaty signed by Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova in Rome on 29 November 2012.
The report reveals in a striking manner the linkages between environment and security in the occupied Palestinian territory. The message is clear: environmental degradation in Palestine only increases the security risks. Solutions are complex and highly depend on fair and flexible accords between Palestine and Israel, eventually Palestinian independence giving full sovereignty over environmental resources.
The ‘SEIS cookbook’ is a guide to understanding the concept of Shared Environmental Information System. The bulk of the cookbook is devoted to case studies which show national and international implementation of SEIS elements, including at the EEA. These examples are collectively used to identify an emerging set of common trends, methods, tools and lessons which have been integrated into the ‘SEIS checklist’. The checklist can be used as a self-assessment tool to measure progress and identify areas that need further development.
While mitigation seeks to limit climate change by reducing the emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and by enhancing opportunities for carbon sequestration, adaptation aims at reducing the vulnerability of natural and human systems against actual or expected climate change effects. Adaptation entails an adjustment in natural or human systems in response to actual or expected climatic stimuli or their effects. The goal of adaptation is to moderate harm or exploit beneficial opportunities. From the sustainable development perspective, the response to climate change requires both mitigation and adaptation. The purpose of this report is to consider the adaptation challenges in the South Eastern Europe (SEE) region.
This third, revised edition of Vital Ozone Graphics sheds a light onto the decisions taken by the Parties to the Montreal Protocol to accelerate the phase out of HCFCs and the implications this has on the use of replacement chemicals. It focuses on the links to climate both physically up in the air and on the institutional ground of international treaty negotiations and discusses the remaining challenges posed by the large amounts of banks of ozone depleting substances still present in equipment in use and stocked away, only safe for the atmosphere once entirely destroyed. The third edition is lauched for the 25th anniversary of the Montreal Protocol.It updates the previous edition with data and information available up to 2011.
The objectives of the toolkit are to help the parties to mining activities express their interests and concerns in a constructive way and to identify areas of mutual benefit. The idea is to contribute to the prevention or resolution of conflicts and ultimately to the economic and social development of a region in an environmentally responsible manner.
Although this toolkit is based on experiences in Central Asia and makes extensive use of findings from case studies in the region, we consider it globally applicable, within the limitations naturally given by the fact that each case is unique.
This briefing paper provides a compact comparison of the mining laws of Finland and the Kyrgyz Republic. The paper has been prepared as part of the research project “Environmental Security, Mining and Good Governance” funded by the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs. The briefing paper contributes to an increased understanding on the part of the project’s parties and stakeholders of the differences in mining legislation in countries like Finland and Kyrgyzstan. The comparison also generally highlights the variety of issues that can be regulated in a legal instrument controlling mining activities.
This toolkit companion is an illustrated overview of the trends and challenges in environment, mining and development of the Kyrgyz Republic and Central Asia. It focuses on environmental security in the mining sector and highlights selected causes and ingredients of recent mining-related conflicts, the lessons learned and the opportunities for solutions. The information comes from interviews with key stakeholders during fieldwork and desk studies, from official and scientific sources and from media accounts. The toolkit companion strives to maintain complete and up-to-date information and to take the neutral position in assessing the local mining conflicts and identifying solutions. It provides Kyrgyz and region-specific material in support of the toolkit application.
During the last decade, to boost the national economy, Kyrgyzstan has strived to develop its mining industry through efforts to attract foreign investors. However, at the same time, Kyrgyzstan has had an increasing number of conflicts between mining companies and local communities. Study of the Chatkal Valley case suggests that the local resistance now leading to severe conflicts may have been encouraged by poor governance of the mining industry and lack of cooperation between stakeholders, also contributing are the industry’s and some levels of government’s lack of acknowledgement of social impacts and community interests. We argue that adequate assessment and management of the social impacts of mining are vital to the sustainable development of both the industry and the society in which it operates.
The United Nations Environment Programme 2011–2013 strategy focuses on six thematic priorities – climate change; resource efficiency; disasters and conflicts; environmental governance; harmful substances and hazardous waste; and ecosystem management. As part of its effort to come to terms with these priorities, UNEP engaged Zoï to create thematic maps for use as objective tools for priority setting in the European region.
This flyer provides a quick picture of the report prepared by the UN Environment Management Group (EMG) on UN System contribution to the implementation of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity which was submitted to the 11th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity.
This report is the product of inter-agency consultations aimed at ensuring greater environmental and social sustainability in the United Nations’ work. The report notes that while many individual United Nations entities have adopted assessment policies and practices, the United Nations System acting together can do even more, including by developing a common sustainability framework and relevant indicators. The initiative looks to build on the internationally agreed sustainability norms and principles of the last 30 years by adapting the best practices of environmental and social assessment procedures and management systems to United Nations System activities.
This report forms part of an awareness-raising campaign by the United Nations Environment Programme and the Environment and Security initiative on the effects of climate change. Representatives of governments, international organizations, civil society organizations and research institutions and other experts from the region have compiled this booklet with the objective of revealing and explaining the linkages between people and the environment in the Balkans. We hope that this report will be of some assistance to those who develop climate change policies and programmes in the region and that it will stimulate concrete actions that eventually can be reported back to the world at one of the future global meetings on climate change.
It is easy for lowlanders to regard the mountains as magical places, harder, perhaps, for them to understand mountain culture and the spirit of mountain people, and hardest of all to acknowledge, much less pay for, the astonishing array of mountain ecosystem goods and services on which they rely. Working with the University of Central Asia and local partners, Zoï Environment Network reveals and explains the connections between the mountain environment and the people of the lowlands, and communicates the findings in a popular report that demonstrates the necessity of sustainable mountain development and the opportunities for a green economy.
This report is an illustrated overview of the trends and challenges in sustainable mountain development in Central Asia since 1992. It highlights selected achievements and lessons learned, and identifies opportunities for further progress. The cover page and title of this version differs from the official version released for the Rio+20 meeting, though the contents remain the same.
Behind this brief pocket book there is an impressive process of change in the Western Balkans: On a regular basis, environmental data are being collected and compiled by the authorities as well as by civil society and the private sector. Information is being passed on to those who want to know what the environmental situation is, so as to be able to compare against targets and thresholds and take action. More than 100 professionals from the region have contributed to this unique compilation of data and indicators, thus helping build the indispensable foundations of democracy in a region, which is step by step becoming an integrated part of Europe.
Reliable information about the environment and in particular water resources is required for the sustainable future of Central Asia. This paper was presented at the UNECE workshop “Managing water information in Central Asia” in December 2011 in Kazakhstan.
This map by Zoï environment network is a contribution to an international effort to support Ukraine and Moldova in jointly managing their shared Dniester river. Besides being used in numerous reports and publications, the map is also 'carved in stone' on nearly fifty information boards mounted along the Dniester river from its source to the mouth. Hopefully this will help people of the basin better understand and appreciate their common heritage, thus in the end turning environmental information into action.
Zoï cares about the environment although, strictly speaking, no one needs to protect the environment, which could do quite well without us. Zoï cares about people, but for whatever reason our work is called environmental protection not people protection. This is Zoï’s work: to identify the threats, reveal and explain the relationships and communicate what we learn. The more we understand the connections between people and the environment, the more we come to know that our work is protecting both.
From generation to disposal, waste is a by-product of societal dynamics, and all too often absent from our consideration. Vital Waste Graphics 3 seeks to put waste in context by looking at some of the forces driving global trends, examining various concerns and the strategies developed to address them and considering the difficulties encountered in implementing these strategies.
Did the changing climate ignite the Arab Spring? Did failures of Egyptian agriculture and the global increase in food process accelerate the fall of the Mubarak regime? The causes of the wave of revolt sweeping across the Middle East and North Africa are complex and multiple. This reports highlits the fact that environmental security and the preservation and just distribution of basic resources are the keys to peace and stability.
This study explores selected options that can replace the mercury mining at the Khaidarkan Mercury Combine (KMC) near the Aidarken settlement in Kyrgyzstan. It considers mining economics, geology and the environmental, health and social effects of the various alternatives.
The fundamental objective of the GEO Cities project is to promote a better understanding of the interaction between urban development and the environment, providing the region’s local governments, scientists, policy-makers and the public with reliable and up-to-date information to help them improve urban environmental planning and management. The GEO Cities assessments provide information on the
More than five years ago we published the first edition of Vital Caspian Graphics. This new edition illustrates the rapidly changing environment in the geopolitically sensitive area around the Caspian Sea. These Vital Caspian Graphics 2 present lesser-known aspects of the region while covering the broader picture in an attractive format to reach out to communities beyond environmental professionals. One of the highlights are the photographic essays by Rena Effendi and Mila Teshaieva.
Overall, there is much to look forward to when it comes to preserving biodiversity both globally and in Central Asia. As the 2011-2020 UN Decade on Biodiversity unfolds, this volume will undoubtedly make a key contribution to those efforts.
With this publication, Zoï Environment Network aims to communicate the known facts of climate change in a well illustrated, easily understandable manner, accessible to everyone. For this we could rely on the rich Caucasian tradition of geographic analysis, map making and visual arts. Unfortunately, the format did not allow the use of other Caucasian specialities, such as music, film, cuisine or toasts, it will be up to the reader to accompany his or her lecture with some of this. We do however want to make the point that also in the Caucasus, climate change is no more myth.
In September 2009 the United Nations Environment Management Group agreed to establish an Issue Management Group on Green Economy. This group was tasked to prepare a report to assess how the United Nations system could coherently support countries in transitioning to a green economy. The report is expected to facilitate a common understanding of the green economy approach and the measures required for the transition. The report is also envisioned to contribute to the preparatory process for the 2012 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD or Rio+20) where “the green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication” is one of the two themes; the other is “the institutional framework for sustainable development”.
The purpose of this assessment is to provide information and recommendations for the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment and other members of the GEF Constituency group for consideration in the second phase of the CACILM (Central Asian Countries Initiative for Land Management) partnership. The overall objective is to assess the extent to which the first phase of the partnership has contributed to reduction of combating land degradation and improving rural livelihoods and to identify the emerging trends and opportunities for CACILM promotion as an example of the regional GEF multi-purpose dynamic partnership.
More than two billion people depend on the world’s arid and semi-arid lands. Preventing land degradation and supporting sustainable development in drylands has major implications for food security, climate change and human settlement. This report, issued at the beginning of the United Nations Decade for Deserts and the Fight against Desertification, sets out a shared strategy by UN agencies to rise to the challenge of addressing the special needs of these vital zones. This report illustrates the many ways in which the UN system is identifying opportunities to mainstream the drylands agenda into the policy-making process.
The publication prepared by Zoi in cooperation with GRID-Arendal and the Environment and Security initiative explores the impacts of climate change on Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine. The three countries of Eastern Europe will not be affected as strongly as many other parts of Eurasia, yet they will see more of severe floods and forest fires, decreasing water reserves in the south, and gradual changes in biodiversity, agriculture and food security. The countries have only started to address these challenges: national policies remain week and the general public is hardly aware of the problem. Meanwhile the industrialized Eastern Europe contributes to the global emissions of greenhouse gases, thus affecting more vulnerable parts of the world. The report was launched at the 7th Ministerial conference "Environment for Europe" in Astana in September 2011.
The prime aim of this report is to identify the environmental stress points in the Amu Darya basin which have, or may have, security repercussions for the states and population.The report then suggests solutions to the challenges identified during the assessment. All in all, the field missions covered more than 3 000 km. Participants included experts from the region and from international organizations. Almost 100 experts were directly involved or consulted during the process.
The Second Assessment of Transboundary Rivers, Lakes and Groundwaters is the most comprehensive, up-to-date overview of the status of transboundary waters in the European and Asian parts of the UNECE region. It covers more than 140 transboundary rivers, 25 transboundary lakes and about 200 transboundary groundwaters. It has been prepared upon request by the Sixth “Environment for Europe” Ministerial Conference as an input for the Seventh Ministerial Conference in Astana in September 2011.
In support of the 2011 Ministerial Conference, the European Environment Agency, supported by UNECE, has prepared a Europe's environment — An Assessment of Assessments (EE-AoA). This assessment of assessments focuses on the two themes of the Astana conference: water and related ecosystems, and green economy. What progress is being made? Is the right information available to be able to tell? Are the correct approaches to assess what is known being used to support the policy process? Given the volume of environmental reports, indicators and data available a huge amount seems to be known about these issues. But is all this informing the policy process effectively, and is the best being done with the resources available for assessment? The aim of this AoA is to investigate these issues by assessing the assessments: cataloguing what exists, reviewing what is in them and analysing how they are put together. The overall objective is to improve the way in which the state of Europe's environment is kept under on-going review.
Special issue - Versii newspaper (Chernivtsi, Ukraine)
Newspaper article in Wochenzeitung (German) - Russian - English
Alex Kirby's broadcast on BBC Radio 4, 27th October 2011
Audio mp3 file
IHPA- POPs Newsletter
Maps of Central Asia: Aral Sea basin, Kazakhstan (south part), Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan.
Zoï helps the EMPIS-SEIS (European Neighborhood Policy Instrument - Shared Environmental Information Systems) National Focal Points prepare the Country Reports and associated action lists. These assessment reports describe the existing institutional cooperation in the partner countries in the field of water resources, atmospheric air, soil and biodiversity protection and waste management, assesses current environmental inter-institutional cooperation in these priority fields and identifies the country's capacity for taking SEIS implementation forward.
This report was produced within the framework of Assessment and Capacity-Building for Managing Environment and Security Risks in Donbas and Salihorsk regions, a UNEP-led ENVSEC project implemented in Ukraine and Belarus to address environmental risk from hazardous activities, and improve environmental management and awareness. Project activities included technical assessments, training and analysis of mining sites, but also workshops and training sessions for journalists to build up their communication skills on environmental topics relevant to their region. This publication presents the findings and results of both parts of the project.
This book is intended as a basic information kit that tells "the story" of desertification, land degradation and drought at the global scale, together with a comprehensive set of graphics. The book indicates trends as they have taken place over the last decades, combining and connecting issues, and present priorities. It also provides information on the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and how it works to forge a global partnership to reverse and prevent desertification/land degradation and to mitigate the effects of drought in affected areas in order to support poverty reduction and environmental sustainability.
Jordan is an ideal case study to highlight the tension between available resources and rising demand in the Middle East, but also globally. Jordan is an extreme case in that it lacks all three key necessities for human civilization: food, water and energy. This report explains that in order to provide long-term answers securing the well-being of future generations there are no short-term answers, nor yet within the boundaries of the nation-state. Regional cooperation is needed to maximize shared benefits.
The loss of land, freshwater and marine biodiversity is part of a wider wave of environmental change driven by ever expanding human activities, touching on virtually every component of our biosphere and the global climate system. This report by the Environment Management Group presents why biodiversity matters to sectors, and how the different policy sectors can help maintain biodiversity and ecosystem services.
Europe contributes to global environmental pressures and accelerating feedbacks through its dependence on fossil fuels, mining products and other imports. Conversely, changes elsewhere increasingly affect Europe. This assessment of global megatrends focuses on the impact of global pressures on Europe. A global-to-European perspective is relevant for European environmental policy making because Europe’s environmental challenges and management options are being reshaped by global drivers such as demographics, technologies, trade patterns and consumption.
This report reflects the current situation on public health in the country, including children’s health, and the impact of environmental factors on their health, as well as an overview of national priorities, policies and activities that were conducted to improve the existing situation.
We are still working with our friends and former colleagues, and with a growing number of other people as well as our portfolio grows. Zoï receives no public funding at all which gives us a degree of flexibility that allows us to work with our clients much faster and more responsively than used to be possible. We sometimes think, in our more headlong moments, that the world really does need more Zoïs.
Over the last few years UNEP and its ENVSEC partners have been working to identify and reduce transboundary environmental risks from hazardous mining operations in South Eastern Europe, with the focus on Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo, Montenegro and Serbia. This document seeks to provide an overview of the results and experience created over this period to facilitate related work in the future and ensure broad dissemination of the lessons learned to guarantee that the efforts made so far can be sustained.
Zoï environment network was founded in Geneva in December 2008 with the mission “to reveal, explain and communicate connections between the environment and society”. This is Zoï's first annual report presenting our achievements and products created in 2009 and introducing the contributors behind the scene.
A Resource Kit for journalists, which provides the essential visuals, facts, links and contacts to develop ozone story ideas. This publication is intended to serve as an interesting reference for those who wish to learn more about the Montreal Protocol and ozone layer depletion.
This publication integrates two streams: the arguments of leading researchers for a more fundamental response to the multiple threats to our single planetary environment with the artistic vision of a world in which everything has been redistributed to achieve radical equity. Both argue for a new way of managing the earth and its resources - a way that provides for everyone’s basic needs. The alternative? Science, they say, offers the probable answer: a return to the dark ages.
This booklet provides a synthesis of what climate change may mean for Central Asia. It builds upon the latest series of the official national communications on climate change by the Central Asian states under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. This highly visual format seeks to communicate to decision makers and to serve education purposes alike.
This synthesis report makes these complex issues better understandable to decision-makers and a more general public. The concise analysis produced integrates the regional environmental and security, political and economical discourse.
Introduction of Best Practice in mining site rehabilitation based on case studies and policy examples from around the world. 'Greening the dumps best practices' is in Russian and was presented at the conference ‘Rehabilitation of industrial land’, on 10 October, 2008 in Donetsk, Ukraine.
This report is the First State of Environment (SOE) Report for Afghanistan and provides readers with an overview of the key environmental issues, factors and drivers of environmental change in Afghanistan, and highlights the latest achievements and prospects ahead.
Each chapter of the report gives an overview of the context, importance and use of natural resources, what is known about their current conditions, trends and linkages to regional or global factors. The report also reveals how Afghanistan’s natural resources - if managed in an efficient and sustainable manner - could provide the basis for future economic growth and stability.
The mandate of the mission led by OSCE was to assess the short-term and long-term impact of the fires of summer 2006 on the environment in the fire-affected territories and to make recommendations on how to counteract any detrimental impact of the fires and on an environmental operation.
This publication highlights the importance of recognising the region’s geopolitical positioning between the EU and the Russian Federation, improving energy security without jeopardising the environment, addressing the Transnistrian conflict in Moldova and strengthening cooperation over shared rivers and ecosystems.
Environmental protection is one of the areas where the Balkan countries still face a big challenge to catch up with their western neighbours. After the 1990s conflicts and the breakup of Yugoslavia, six new Balkan states emerged. Apart from integrating environmental concerns into the new policies, a major challenge is environmental management across new borders.
This publication of the Environment and Security Initiative (ENVSEC) aims to present a basis for action within South Eastern Europe and within the Tisza River Basin towards the development of corporate practice, regulatory frameworks, governance guidelines and/or financial and insurance markets suitable for the support of a modern mining industry.
The assesssment has been produced upon request of the countries of the Ferghana Valley - Kyrgzystan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan - and has widely benefited from their inputs. it shows how the Environment and Security initiative has helped identify both environmental threats to regional security and opportunities for cross-border dialogue.
The report briefly presents a preliminary assessment of environment and security linkages in the Southern Caucasus, carried out at the request of the host governments and in consultation with national experts. Its purpose is to establish the parameters for follow-up action by national authorities and international partners.
This report focuses on the environmental stress affecting security in two case regions, Central Asia and South Eastern Europe. It provides maps with an overview on major environmental risks to human development and security. The maps are derived from information gathered at consultation workshops in Belgrade and Ashgabat, which were attended by local experts, government and non-government representatives.