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7th Earthwatch Working Party

Annotated agenda - UNEP/EWWP7/1/AddI

(Also available in word format ewwp7anag.doc - 79 Kb)

1. Opening of the meeting

The meeting will be opened by the Chief, Environmental Assessment Branch, Division of Early Warning and Assessment, UNEP, on Monday 10 December 2001 at 9.00 a.m. in Room 2 at the International Environment House, 11 Chemin des Anémones, 1219 Châtelaine (Geneva).

2. Approval of the agenda and adoption of working procedures

The Working Party will be invited to approve the provisional agenda (UNEP/EWWP7/1), and to designate a chairperson. It is proposed that decisions be taken by consensus. The agenda and other working documents for the meeting have been distributed by e-mail and posted on the documents page of the Earthwatch World Wide Web site (http://www.unep.ch/earthw/Documen.htm).

3. Report by the secretariat on progress in Earthwatch

The secretariat will present a report on the implementation of the UN system-wide Earthwatch since the last meeting of the Working Party in March 2000 (UNEP/EWWP7/2). The terms of reference originally agreed to by the Working Party might be revisited in light of the review of Information for Decision-Making and Participation undertaken at the ninth session of the Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD-9) in April 2001 as was suggested at the sixth meeting of the Working Party.

4. Task Manager functions for Chapter 40

The Working Party will hear a report from the representative of the UN Division for Sustainable Development (DSD) on the outcome of the expert meeting on Information for Decision-Making and Participation held in Canada in September 2000 and on the follow-up to the report of the Secretary General to the Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD).

5. Relevant decisions of the ninth session of the CSD

The Working Party will hear a report on recommendations adopted at the ninth meeting of the CSD relevant to Information for Decision-Making and Participation including streamlining international data collection, development of common frameworks for identification of critical core data sets and information, and promoting the networking of decentralized data repositories.

6. Indicators of environment and sustainable development

The Working Party will hear a report on the work programme of indicators of sustainable development of the UN DSD and on targeted programmes of other agencies to develop sectoral indicators. The meeting will also hear a briefing on indicators by UNEP/DEWA including a presentation on 'a review of environmental indicators initiative and towards development of a composite index for environment'.

7. Update on UN system input to the GEO3

The Working Party will discuss the present situation as regards input to the Global Environment Outlook report (GEO3) and will note the specific areas in which follow-up action will be undertaken.

8. Preparation for and follow up to the World Summit on Sustainable Development

Each participant will be requested to update the Working Party on their agency's status of preparation for the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) to be held in Johannesburg in September 2002 and on related inter-agency activities relevant to environmental assessment and reporting under Chapter 40. Consideration might be given to priorities that could emerge from the WSSD and to a strategy for inter-agency response to an eventual system-wide mandate. The meeting will also hear a presentation by UNEP/DEWA on the Earthwatch Decision Support System.

9. Harmonization of Global Environment Assessments

The Working Party will hear a report on the current activity of UNEP, working in partnership with other UN agencies involved in the implementation of global environmental assessments, with an initial focus on the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment and the Land Degradation Assessment.

10. New and emerging issues

New and emerging issues that might be considered within the context of Earthwatch are inter alia, information on invasive species, vulnerability issues, coral reefs, information needs in support of the biosafety protocol, and support to the harmonization of countries' reporting obligations under multilateral environment agreements. In each case the Working Party may wish to examine: potential inter-agency issues and the role of Earthwatch coordination, as well as the responsibilities and interaction for specific activities; harmonization of data collection and reporting; existing information systems and how to coordinate within them and to the Earthwatch website; monitoring of information outside the UN system; determination of a coordinated response to information seekers. Any other emerging issues will be discussed.

11. Integrated Global Observing Strategy (IGOS)

The Working Party will hear a report on the results of the seventh and eighth meetings of the IGOS partners held respectively in Paris in June 2001 and in Kyoto in November 2001.

12. Status of UNEP.net

A report will be presented on the status of UNEP.net and its compatibility with websites of other agencies. Participants will be requested to present reports on initiatives in electronic information systems in their agencies and on efforts, if any, to link sites across the UN system wide Earthwatch and other partner organizations in a coherent integrated framework. The Working Party should be aware of the existence of or plans to create electronic information systems in partner organizations and of any innovative actions in this field in particular to avoid duplication and to streamline information sources. The outlook for the development of UNEP.net will be discussed.

13. Future strategy and work programme for Earthwatch coordination

In the light of previous consultation on the different strategic elements and activities across the UN system and beyond of relevance to Earthwatch, participants should consider which Earthwatch coordination activities should be given priority in the year ahead, especially in view of the WSSD.

14. Other business

The Working Party will consider any other business that agencies wish to discuss in the context of Earthwatch.

15. Date and venue of the next meeting

The date and venue of the next meeting of the Earthwatch Working Party, normally held at least once a year, will be determined, if possible, linked to another relevant meeting.

16. Adoption of the report of the meeting

The secretariat will present the draft report of the meeting for adoption.

17. Closure of the meeting

The meeting will close, if possible, by Tuesday 11 December 2001 at 6.00 p.m.



7th Working Party


UNEP/DEWA/Earthwatch 1996-2003