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INSTITUTIONAL ASPECTS OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN NORWAY


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INTEGRATED DECISION-MAKING

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

Provisions on environmental impact assessment (EIA) for certain projects were introduced into the Planning and Building Act in 1990, and regulations on EIA were also brought in. Since then, about 200 projects have been vetted by the EIA process. The Act and regulation were revised in 1996 to meet the requirements of European Community (EC) Directive 85/337, and were updated again in 1999.

The EIA process is recognised as an important tool for integrating environmental considerations into decision-making. The geographically limited focus of national EIA legislation has resulted in a growing interest in EIA for projects that are likely to have a transboundary impact. The UNECE Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context (the Espoo Convention) will continue to be important for preventing and dealing with such impacts. Provisions on EIA in a transboundary context were incorporated into the Norwegian regulations when they were revised in 1999.

Research and development on the strategic environmental impact assessment of plans, programmes and politics are considered to be important. Since 1995, the environmental impacts of all new legislation and policy decisions must be assessed taking into consideration sustainable development aspects. According to a revised administrative order of 1994, not only the administrative and economic effects, but also the environmental effects of all proposals submitted to the King in Council, the Cabinet, and Parliament must be assessed by the ministry responsible for the proposal. The Ministry of the Environment must be consulted in these preparations. Furthermore, the Ministry of the Environment has initiated a project in which the experience of a number of municipalities in using EIA principles in land-use planning are being collected and analysed. The Ministry, in cooperation with other ministries, is also encouraging the application of EIA principles to sectoral programmes, for example, transport, energy, and agriculture. A research project has been established to look into current practice in the transport sector and propose improvements.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

Norway adopted a national sustainable development policy with Report to the Storting No. 58 (1996-97): Environmental Policy for a Sustainable Development: Joint efforts for the future. A Strategy for Environment in Development Cooperation (Royal Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 1997) has also been adopted and the first annual white paper on the Government’s environmental policy and the state of the environment in Norway has been submitted (Report to the Storting No. 8 (1999-2000)).

In its white paper on an environmental policy for sustainable development, the Government presented its environmental policy priorities and proposed new policies to ensure sustainable development. The Government emphasised the importance of developing the necessary tools to ensure a sustainable path of socio-economic development. It stated its intention of using sectoral action plans based on principles of management by objectives and cost-effectiveness to make clear the responsibility of all sectors for achieving environmental policy goals. Goal-oriented and cost-effective environmental policies across sectors were to be used to ensure that environmental concerns are integrated into sectoral policies in accordance with the principle that all sectors have an environmental responsibility. The results of this process are now being published on an annual basis in the white paper on the Government’s environmental policy and the state of the environment.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

The Norwegian EIA regulations lay down comprehensive rules for public participation during the two stages of the EIA process. During the notification stage (which precedes the actual assessment stage), the general public, voluntary and industrial organisations, and the authorities concerned are given the opportunity to comment on the notification and the draft study programme, and to propose topics to be further addressed in the environmental impact statement. Furthermore, a public meeting is held when the draft statement is published, but before a decision on the proposed project is made. The comments received during the public participation procedures must be enclosed when the notification or environmental impact statement is sent to the decision-making authority. A copy of the letter of approval, which is sent by the competent authority to the developer to finalise the EIA process, is also forwarded to all persons and bodies that have made comments.

Programmes and Projects 

Another important basis for decision-making is the Long-Term Programme, which is published at regular intervals and describes the Government’s plans for the next four-year period and outlines the perspectives for the next ten years. Environmental issues are integrated into the programme. There are also a number of interdepartmental plans and working groups which have been established to review and coordinate important areas of work, for example, the Interdepartmental Biodiversity Plan and the Interdepartmental Working Group on Climate and Acid Rain.

Status 

The mandate for the Ad hoc Group on EIA under the Nordic Council of Ministers ended in 1998. In order to continue the coordinated Nordic efforts on research and development on environmental impact assessment, strategic environmental assessment and regional development in the Nordic context, the Nordic Network was established in 1999. The Network is administrated by the Nordic Centre for Spatial Development (Nordregio).

Interest among scientists and educational institutions in both land use planning and EIA, as well as the integration of these two functions, has increased. A national EIA Research Centre and a Network Centre on Planning Research have been established at the Norwegian Institute of Urban and Regional Research during the last few years.

National Decision-Making Structure

1. National Sustainable Development Coordination Body: Yes
2. National Sustainable Development Policy: Yes
3. National Agenda 21/other strategy for SD: In process
4. Local/Regional Agenda(s) 21: Yes
5. Environmental Impact Assessment Law: Yes
6. Major Groups involved in Sustainable Development Decision-Making: Yes

National Instruments and Programmes

1. Sustainable development or environmental education incorporated into school curricula: Yes
2. Sustainable Development Indicators Program: Yes
3. Ecolabel Regulations: Yes
4. Recycle/Reuse Programs: Yes
5. Green Accounting Program: Yes
6. Access to Internet: Yes
7. Access to World Wide Web: Yes
8. A national World Wide Web Site for Sustainable Development or State of the Environment:
State of the Environment Norway: http://www.mistin.dep.no/default-e.htm

Sustainable development: http://www.agenda21.no/

Yes

Policies, Programmes, and Legislation

Does your country have either a policy, programme, and/or legislation consistent with Agenda 21 in:

 
1. Combatting poverty: N/A
2. Changing consumption and production patterns: Yes
3. Atmosphere: Yes
4. Land Use Planning: Yes
5. Forest and Deforestation: Yes
6. Desertification and Drought: N/A
7. Sustainable Mountain Development: Yes
8. Sustainable Agriculture: Yes
9. Biological Diversity: Yes
10. Biotechnology: Yes
11. Oceans and Coastal Areas: Yes
12. Freshwater Management: Yes
13. Toxic Chemicals: Yes
14. Hazardous Wastes: Yes
15. Solid Wastes: Yes
16. Radioactive Wastes: Yes
17. Energy: Yes
18. Transport: Yes
19. Sustainable Tourism: Yes

 

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising 

Assessment and monitoring of capacity-building is ensured through the following:

(a) Tools and methodologies to assess and monitor: Project reviews, assessments regarding level of achievements and quality of work/professional output, tests, examinations, assessment re viability and sustainability of educational facilities and institutions, etc.

(b) Learning from lessons coming out of monitoring process: By using external and internal consultants for reviews and evaluations with special focus on the subject, production of reports and special written material, such as manuals etc., development of in-house training courses custom-made to selected categories of personnel.

 Information 

The Government stated that it would continue to develop a result monitoring system for the state of the environment, environmental pressures and environmental measures that have been implemented. This would provide the necessary basis for steering towards a sustainable path of development, for instance by making it possible to observe the aggregate environmental impact of activity in various sectors.

The report on an environmental policy for sustainable development also specified indicators of sustainable development for both the private and the public sectors, in order to provide a basis for a system of environmental accounting related to the development of sectoral action plans. The report identified the responsibilities of various parties who contribute significantly to undesirable environmental changes.

Research and Technologies  

No information is available.

Financing 

The most important finance planning documents presented by the Norwegian Government to Parliament at regular intervals are The long-term Programme which is presented every fourth year; the National Budget presented every year; and the State Budget also presented every year. Norway participates in the working party of the Development Assistance Committee, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development on Development Assistance and Environment (DAC/ OECD), which was established in 1989. The party is showing leadership in shaping policies and strategic focus on the follow-up of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) and Agenda 21.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth, sixth and eighth sessions of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: February 2000.

For access to the State of the Environment Norway Report, click here:
For access to the homepage of the Ministry of Environment, click here:
For access to the Report to the Storting No. 58 on Environmental Policy for a Sustainable Development, click here:
The Environmental Policy Statement 1996 of the Norwegian Government is available under:
For acess to the homepage of the Norwegian Pollution Control Authority, click here:
For access to ODIN (Official Documentation and Information from Norway), click here:
Statistical information is available from Statistics Norway at:
For information on Environmental Law around the World, click here:

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MAJOR GROUPS

WOMEN

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

The government has formulated and implemented policies, guidelines, strategies, and plans for the achievement of equality in all aspects of society, including issuing a strategy by the year 2000 to eliminate obstacles to full participation of women in sustainable development. Mechanisms are in place to assess the implementation and impact of development and environment policies and programmes on women.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects 

In 1989, the Ministry of Environment initiated a 3-year experimental programme Municipal Planning on Women's Terms. The objective was three-fold: (i) to learn more about women's values and needs, and develop models for incorporating these into the municipal master plan; (ii) to prepare municipal master plans with a stronger women's perspective on the residential environment, economic policy, employment policy, and health and welfare policy; and (iii) to communicate the knowledge obtained through the project to other municipalities. Relevant Ministries participated in the programme which was implemented in six small rural municipalities.

Status 

The percentage of women in government and parliament was 42 % and 39.4% respectively in both 1992 and 1996. The percentage of women at the local government level was 28.5% and 32.7% in 1992 and 1996 respectively. The government is already involved in assessing, reviewing, revising and implementing curricula and other educational material with a view to promoting dissemination of gender-relevant knowledge.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies  

The Ministry of Environment is financially supporting a regional college study in "Planning and Democracy - a Women's Perspective on Social Planning." The main purpose is to put gender problems on the agenda of existing social planning, and to create an alternative by giving the students understanding of how women's values and demands can be integrated in planning. The study is arranged as a part-time study at the Northern Feminist University. In 1995, the Ministry of Environment made a study of some municipalities and counties in Norway to see what had been accomplished since the beginning of the 1980s. The study verified that the women's perspective has gradually been given more weight in planning documents. Bottom-up models as a planning principle are now more accepted. These results are summarized in the HABITAT II report by the Northern Feminist University.

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women was signed by Norway on 17 July 1980 and ratified on 21 May 1981.

 

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

For information on Norway's National Follow-up to the United Nations' Fourth World Conference on Women, click here:
For information on WomenWatch in different countries, click here:
For information on national plans of action in the follow-up to the Beijing Conference, click here:

 

CHILDREN AND YOUTH

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

In accordance with the Planning and Building Act, National Policy Guidelines to promote the interests of children and adolescents in planning were adopted in 1989. The Guidelines require each municipal council to appoint a person to attend meetings of the planning council and take children's interests into account. The Guidelines are implemented actively by authorities at the county level, and a national conference on the subject is arranged every year. Several pilot projects on children's participation are carried out by municipalities.

The Governments' goal is to provide environmental education and to stimulate environmental concern among children and young people. To achieve this among the youngest children, the Ministry of Children and Family Affairs and the Ministry of Environment have developed a joint strategy and an action plan for environmental education in kindergartens. The action plan is implemented in the new master plan for kindergartens, pursuant to the Kindergarten Act.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement

The Government will host an international conference on child labour in Oslo, 27-30 October 1997. The aim is to identify how Norway and other countries can actively contribute to implementation of the International Convention on the Rights of the Child; and strengthen respect for International Labour Organization (ILO) Convention 138 (the Minimum Age Convention) and other relevant international instruments through development assistance and other forms of international cooperation. The approach should be to facilitate open and constructive dialogue between governments and representatives from organized groups of civil society, defining complementary strategies to reach the objective of combating child labour. Norway is preparing the conference in close collaboration with ILO and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).

The two most important youth forums in Norway are Nature and Youth for young people up to 25 years of age, and The Inky Arms Club for children between three and thirteen years old. Both NGOs represent important channels for awareness raising and active involvement of young people in environmental questions. Youth are ad hoc participants in the national sustainable development process.

Programmes   and Projects 

No information is available.

Status 

The government has already ensured that more than 50% of youth, gender balanced, have access to appropriate secondary education or vocational training. Youth unemployment for the 16-19 years old group was 6.3% and 4.3% in 1992 and 1996 respectively. Corresponding figures for the 20-24 years old group were 11.7% and 7.9%. The Government provides core and project funding for the two major youth NGOs discussed above.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

For access to the homepage of the Ministry for Children and Family Affairs, click here:

 

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement

The legal framework to enable establishment of a process for cooperation with and participation of the Sami people within different fields of politics is in place due to the establishment of the "Sameting"- the Sami Assembly in Norway. This assembly is democratically elected by the Sami people by a direct vote. The first Sami Assembly was officially opened on October 9, 1989. The purpose of the Sami Act (an Act concerning the Sami assembly and other legal matters) of May 29th 1987, is to make it possible for the Sami people to safeguard and develop their language, culture, and way of life.

The Sami Assembly is involved in the national preparation process to the Conference of the Parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity, especially on the item "Knowledge, Innovations and Practices of Indigenous and Local Communities". When it comes to developing strategies for Local Agenda 21s in communities with Sami population, the Government expects the Sami perspective to be present.

Thus, in Norway, a process to empower indigenous people and their communities through policies and legal instruments is in place. Indigenous people participate on an ad hoc basis to strengthen arrangements for active participation in national policies related to sustainable development. Mechanism for involving indigenous people in resource management strategies and programmes at the national and local level are being discussed.

Programmes   and Projects 

No information is available.

Status 

No information is available.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

Norway's ratification of the International Labour Organization's (ILO) Indigenous and Tribal Peoples Convention (169) concerning indigenous and tribal peoples in independent countries, gives support for the policy of cooperation with the Sami people in matters where their interests are concerned. The appreciation that article 27 in the United Nation Convention on Civil and Political Rights encompasses the cultures' material and environmental basis, especially when indigenous peoples' cultures are concerned, is of importance when mechanisms for cooperation regarding resource management are being discussed.

 

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

 

 

NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement

Mechanisms for NGO participation in programmes for sustainable development was introduced in the late 1980s. Currently, NGOs participate in the conception, establishment, and evaluation of official mechanisms to review Agenda 21 implementation. The NGOs are permanent members of the National Committee for Sustainable Development and the National Committee for International Environmental Matters (NIM). The NGOs are included in the national preparation committees for major UN conferences, and are also included in the national delegations to the UN Commission for Sustainable Development (CSD). The Government allocates core- and project funding for NGOs and their networks to facilitate their participation and strengthen their role as partners for sustainable development at all levels.

Programmes   and Projects 

No information is available.

Status 

No information is available.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies 

No information is available. 

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

 

 

LOCAL AUTHORITIES

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

The Government plans to support Local Agenda 21 initiatives in 1997. The Ministry of Environment is working out a strategy on how to implement Local Agenda 21s in Norway, based on the experience of existing reforms, projects, and programmes (see below), and in close cooperation with the Confederation of Norwegian Business and Industry (NHO), the National Labour Organization (LO), the Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities (KS), and other relevant organizations.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement

No information is available.

Programmes   and Projects 

Local Agenda 21 in Norway is based on and associated with the Reform of Environment Protection in the Municipalities project (MIK-Reform). The project was initiated in 1988, and from 1997 it will be an integral part of the local municipality system. The MIK-Reform is based on holistic and long-term planning and policy at municipality level. The Ministry of Environment for its part runs different Local Agenda 21 related programmes which will provide important experiences in its implementation in Norway.

The environmental programme is further developed and collected under one umbrella: the Environmental Education Network, a joint effort by several Norwegian ministries which ties Environmental Education to the development of Local Agenda 21. The main aim is to develop cooperation and partnerships among actors such as educators, scientists, governments, NGOs, business and other major groups to communicate the key message of sustainable development. The Network supports cooperation between schools, concerned local authorities and NGOs.

In addition, there are other initiatives from "The Norwegian Network of Health-and Environmental Municipalities", The Norwegian Centre for Voluntary Work (FRISAM), the programme for Eco-Municipalities, and other organizations. The experience and results of these programmes and projects will be used as a foundation for the further development of the MIK-Reform into Local Agenda 21 in Norway.

Status 

All the Norwegian municipalities have implemented the MIK-Reform, regarded as the first phase of Local Agenda 21. In addition to the traditional environmental problems, the following aspects will be emphasized in the recently initiated phase two of the Local Agenda 21 work: local participation in both planning and action programmes; the global aspect in Local Agenda 21 will have to be strengthened and developed further and integrated into the processes of local planning; and the social and economical aspects of Agenda 21.

Some municipalities, counties, and NGOs have already started Local Agenda 21 processes, often in combination with or based on other related projects and programmes. It is estimated that 60-70 municipalities and 4-5 counties are working with the Local Agenda 21 concept today. The cities of Fredrikstad and Bergen, for example, have started Local Agenda 21 processes and passed resolutions concerning a Local Agenda 21 programme. The two municipalities Sund and Giske are implementing and monitoring Local Agenda 21 programmes. At the county level, Akershus county has among others introduced the term "Regional Agenda 21" and is working on implementation at the regional level.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

The School for Politicians is an adult education programme aimed at local decision-makers. The programme is funded mainly by the Ministry of Environment, the Ministry of Education, Research and Church Affairs and the participating municipalities. The participants themselves, mostly members of the municipal councils and administrators, define the contents of the programme for their municipality. The programme concentrates on local problems, and includes project work to improve the local environment. Evaluation has shown that The course often leads to better intersectorial cooperation and changed attitudes, as well as concrete environmental action such as sorting of waste, composting, monitoring of fjords, measures to save energy and planning and implementing education-related action plans. Under its new name, The Environmental School, the programme will be an integral part of the Local Agenda 21 processes which will take place in Norwegian municipalities in coming years.

Information 

The Environmental School's address is: Miljøskolen, Ressurssentret, Tingvoll videregående skole, 6630 Tingvoll; phone + 47 71530142.

The Ministry of Environment has initiated a survey of local authorities' use of the provisions in the Planning and Building Act of 1985 for public participation in municipal planning. According to the survey, almost all municipalities fulfill the minimum level of participation provided by the law. Approximately 20-30% of local authorities have experiences from more comprehensive programmes on participation involving local groups, women, and/or youth groups. Public participation and planning is likely to be included in the White Paper on Regional Planning and Land Use to be submitted in March 1997.

Research and Technologies  

No information is available.

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth and sixth sessions of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

For access to the homepage of the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development, click here:

 

 

WORKERS AND TRADE UNIONS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement

No information is available.

Programmes   and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

In Norway, International Labour Organization (ILO) Conventions have been ratified and workers take some part in National Agenda 21 discussions and implementation. To date, the role of workers and their trade unions has not yet been crystallized for Local Agenda 21s, but the Ministry of Environment is presently working on a strategy on how to implement Local Agenda 21 in Norway. Workers and trade unions have a central role in this initiative.

In 1995, the Ministry of Environment established the Norwegian Centre for Sustainable Production and Consumption (GRIP Centre). GRIP collaborates with organizations, including labour groups, in specific business areas to develop, field test, and promote methods that increase eco-effectiveness.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

 

 

BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement

Both the Confederation of Norwegian Business and Industry (NHO), and the Norwegian Federation of Trade Unions are represented in the National Committee for International Environmental Issues.

Programmes   and Projects 

There are governmental policies to encourage increasing the efficiency of resource use, including reuse, recycling, and reduction of waste per unit of economic output. Furthermore, there are governmental policies requiring recycling. The Federation of Norwegian Process Industries encourages its members to take part in a Responsible Care Programme that the organization carries out. Most big enterprises (90%), and several small and medium sized enterprises (40%) have adopted sustainable development policies. The concept of stewardship in management and use of natural resources by entrepreneurs is shown, for example, in the adoption of the European Union's voluntary Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) and the International Standards Organization's benchmark standard for Environmental Management Systems, ISO 14000.

Status 

Industrial enterprises are by far the greater part of big enterprises, and the percentage stated above is believed to be relatively certain. Small and medium enterprises are both from industry and business and the percentage stated is much more uncertain.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth and sixth sessions of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: December 1997.

 

SCIENTIFIC AND TECHNICAL COMMUNITY

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement

No information is available.

Programmes   and Projects 

The Programme for Research and Documentation for a Sustainable Society (1996-98) was established in order to carry out strategic research for the realization of a sustainable society; monitoring of Norwegian progress with respect to the political and economic aspects of Agenda 21; and information and communication on alternative futures and global ethics.

Status 

The Scientific community in Norway has already established ways to address the general public and deal with sustainable development. Exchange of knowledge is an integral part of research activity in general, including the dissemination of knowledge directed towards the general public.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

Norwegian participation in international R&D cooperation is growing. Since 1991, the Programme of Cooperation and Competence-Building at university institutions in developing countries is based on mutually binding cooperation programmes between Norwegian universities and universities in developing countries. The programme includes training of researchers, Masters and Doctoral programmes, training of technicians and administrative staff, and infrastructure support.

 

 

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

 

FARMERS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

The Agricultural Agreement, which is negotiated annually between the Government and farmers unions, consists of a broad range of instruments to promote sustainable policies. The farmers unions are implementing Environment and Resource Plans for the full integration of environmental considerations into agricultural production. The Acreage and Cultural Landscape Scheme has replaced production-oriented subsidies, and is turning agricultural farming practices towards a sustainable direction, both ecologically and economically. All arable land and pasture is eligible for the payments when certain obligations concerning the cultural landscape are fulfilled and the farming practices are in line with the legislation.

The farmer unions and the Sami Reindeer Herders Association of Norway have participated in preliminary work to revise the policy for agricultural and reindeer husbandry. They are, furthermore, involved in the annual negotiations with the Government over regional and structural support which are laid down in the Agricultural Agreement and the Reindeer Husbandry Agreement.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement

NGOs, the farmers unions, and the Reindeer Husbandry Union are important contributors in the preliminary work to revise laws and regulations. The role of farmers and Sami people is strengthened by clarifying their responsibility for using environmentally friendly production methods in the industry. The farmer unions are responsible for implementing environment and natural resource plans, a new planning tool at the farm level to achieve full integration of environmental consideration in production.

Programmes   and Projects 

No information is available.

Status 

No information is available.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies  

In Norway, specific economical support takes care of special concerns such as organic farming and soil conservation. Sustainable farming practices and technologies are encouraged by information and extension services.

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

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SCIENCE

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

At the governmental level, responsibilities for science related to sustainable development are organized as follows: The Ministry of Environment has direct responsibility for environmental research and indirect overall responsibility for integration of environmental considerations and environmental research themes in research funded directly by other ministries and sectors. The Ministry of Education, Research and Church affairs has a special responsibility for basic and long-term research, as well as for higher education. Other ministries hold responsibility for environmental research within their areas.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

In September 1996, the Research Council published a Strategic Plan for Research on Environment and Development. The UNCED and post-UNCED documents played major roles during the development of the strategic plan.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement 

Decision-makers from both Government and local administrations are actively involved in the concerned programme committees of the Research Council of Norway. This practice is established to ensure that relevant research is conducted and that new knowledge rapidly reaches those decision-makers who need it most. A series of conferences on sustainable development has been established to facilitate a good dialogue between scientists and decision-makers in public administration and in industry. Scientists are also commonly invited to participate in the elaboration of policy papers which form the basis of the development of new rules and regulations.

Dialogue among the scientific community, the Government and the public at large is active and diverse through mechanisms and institutions such as:

Programmes   and Projects 

No information is available.

Status 

One of the most important infrastructural changes in Norway has been the reorganization of the research council system. In 1993, five research councils were merged into the one Research Council of Norway. One of the new Council's six divisions is the Division of Environment and Development. This indicates the integration of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) recommendations at the very basic level of Norwegian research. The Research Council produces biannual surveys on their activities relevant to UNCED. Today there are more than 90 research programmes, each with 5-10 projects relevant to Agenda 21.

Universities and state colleges have given increased attention to science for sustainable development. In general this has been accomplished through integrating environment and development issues into their ordinary activities through establishing courses and research activities such as "environmental and developmental economics", "environmental physics," and "environmental technology," etc. All universities have established interdisciplinary centres for environment and development.

Environmental research is a basic prerequisite for meeting global and national challenges related to the carrying capacity of nature, biodiversity, and sustainable production and consumption. During the last decade, environmental research has been a field of priority in the Government's general research policy. Public spending on environmental research has increased, and environment and development issues have become an integrated part of the national research system.

Science is an important instrument in producing the knowledge needed to make wise and sound decisions for achieving a more sustainable development. There are still many knowledge gaps to be filled. The Government therefore still gives priority to science for sustainable development.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

All universities, university colleges and state colleges are supposed to disseminate their own findings.

Norway, at governmental level or through the Research Council of Norway, currently reports on issues related to Science for Sustainable Development to the following intergovernmental bodies:

Research and Technologies 

The Research Council of Norway gives priority to environmental research aimed at more sustainable value-added. Threats to the environment must be identified as early as possible, and work on environmentally-friendly products must be further advanced. Priority is given to environmentally-oriented research for marine and arctic environments.

It is also within the mandate of the Research Council of Norway, Division of Environment and Development, to promote environmental research, development research and research in the interface between environmental and social conditions. Development research is defined as "research on processes of social change, designed to improve the knowledge base for development cooperation, poverty reduction and the promotion of interpersonal understanding". The special needs of the poor should therefore be an integral part of planning and implementation of research in this area. The Research Council is presently planning a new effort to promote research in the field of development and North-South issues. Poverty reduction will most probably become a high-priority area of research. The planning of this new initiative is taking place in close contact with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and its work on a new strategic plan to strengthen human resource development and research related to Norway's relations with developing countries.

Examples for present research on sustainable development issues:

Research on water issues:

Main institutions for research on water management, including resource use, are:

Research is mainly funded by the institutions themselves or by the Research Council of Norway.

Under the auspices of the Research Council of Norway the following research programmes are presently active in the field of freshwater management:

Research on sustainable production and consumption patterns:

Research Programme on Sustainable Production and Consumption (1996-2001)


Purpose: to contribute to an increased insight into the relationship between production and consumption patterns, distribution and environment - nationally and globally as well as across generations. The programme has clearly applied components with the intention of supplying knowledge as a basis for political actions.

Programme for Research and Documentation for a Sustainable Society (ProSuS)

Purpose:

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Council of Universities have concluded an agreement concerning competence-building at university institutions in developing countries.

In development cooperation programming, scientific institutions are used as advisers. The Norwegian research and education communities are becoming increasingly involved in cooperation with institutions in developing countries, and the government is currently elaborating a strategy to strengthen know-how and research concerning Norway's relations with developing countries, in cooperation with the Norwegian Council of Universities.

 

 

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This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth and sixth sessions of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: December 1997.

For access to the homepage of the Research Council of Norway, click here

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INFORMATION

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement

No information is available.

Programmes   and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

In Norway, indicators are being developed for a number of purposes to improve information for decision-making.

The availability and quality of sustainable development information at the national level can be summarized as follows:

Agenda 21 Chapters

Very good

Good

Some good data but many gaps

Poor

Remarks

2. International cooperation and trade

X

       
3. Combating poverty  

X

     
4. Changing consumption patterns  

X

     
5. Demographic dynamics and sustainability

X

       
6. Human health  

X

     
7. Human settlements

X

       
8. Integrating E & D in decision-making  

X

     
9. Protection of the atmosphere  

X

     
10. Integrated planning and management of land resources  

X

     
11. Combating deforestation  

X

     
12. Combating desertification and drought  

X

     
13. Sustainable mountain development  

X

     
14. Sustainable agriculture and rural development  

X

     
15. Conservation of biological diversity  

X

     
16. Biotechnology  

X

     
17. Oceans, seas, coastal areas and their living resources

X

       
18. Freshwater resources  

X

     
19. Toxic chemicals  

X

     
20. Hazardous wastes  

X

     
21. Solid wastes

X

       
22. Radioactive wastes

X

       
24. Women in sustainable development

X

       
25. Children and youth

X

       
26. Indigenous people

X

       
27. Non-governmental organizations

X

       
28. Local authorities

X

       
29. Workers and trade unions

X

       
30. Business and industry

X

       
31. Scientific and technological community  

X

     
32. Farmers  

X

     
33. Financial resources and mechanisms

X

       
34. Technology, cooperation and capacity-building  

X

     
35. Science for sustainable development  

X

     
36. Education, public awareness and training  

X

     
37. International cooperation for capacity-building  

X

     
38. International institutional arrangements

X

       
39. International legal instruments

X

       
40. Information for decision-making  

X

     

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

Norway is actively supporting the work on environmental indicators at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Biannually, The Nordic Council of Ministers produces a report on the state of the environment in the Nordic countries based on indicators. Nationally, indicators have replaced parts of the texts in the State Budget proposal.

 

 

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

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INTERNATIONAL LAW

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement

No information is available.

Programmes   and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

No information is available.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

For Norway, a listing of major international agreements and conventions entered into and relevant to Agenda 21 include:

* * *

This information was provided by the Government of Norway to the fifth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.



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