Measurement and statistics: gauging the impact of climate change

Countries can adapt to climate change most effectively if they have reliable demographic data, as well as statistics on economic and social conditions, resources and the environment. Drawing on national-level data sets, DESA compiles authoritative records on land use and land degradation, forests, fresh water resources and access to safe water and sanitation, energy use, energy efficiency, levels of carbon dioxide emissions, and a variety of other factors central to understanding of the impact of climate change on human populations.

The United Nations Statistical Commission, serviced by DESA, plays a lead role in reviewing indicators of sustainable development for technical soundness, and guides national capacity-building efforts with a view to standardizing definitions and data collection methods across countries. Reliable and comparable statistics are the foundation of economic and social research and analysis.

 

Case studies


 

Partnerships


  • DestiNet - Sustainable Tourism Information Portal
    Lead Partner:
    ECOTRANS e. V. - United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) - Production and Consumption Branch - European Environment Agency (EEA) - World Tourism Organization (WTO) - UN Agency  
    Geographical Scope:
    Sub-regional Europe 
    Summary:
    DestiNet http://destinet.ewindows.eu.org - is a portal that provides information on sustainable tourism, and is primarily targeted at tourist destinations. Started in 2002 by the EEA the portal is now expanded to include Partner inputs from a wide range of tourism disciplines, via the ECOTRANS network of European sustainable tourism interests. The information provided on DestiNet includes tips on...
  • Designing Country Profiles on Sustainable Energy Development
    Lead Partner:
    International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)  
    Geographical Scope:
    National 
    Summary:
    The main objective of this partnership is to design and demonstrate the application of a systematic and comprehensive approach for developing Country Profiles on Sustainable Energy Development (CPSEDs). Country leaders, policymakers and energy analysts are faced with the major challenge of assessing their energy systems within a sustainable development framework. Projects, plans, programs and pol...
  • Indicators for Sustainable Energy Development (ISED)
    Lead Partner:
    International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)  
    Geographical Scope:
    Global 
    Summary:
    The project on Indicators for Sustainable Energy Development (ISED) has three major objectives: (1) to fill the need for a comprehensive and consistent set of energy indicators that can be used in an effective manner to assess progress towards a sustainable energy future, (2) to assist countries in energy and statistical capacity building necessary to induce energy sustainability and (3) to supple...
  • Asia-Pacific Environmental Innovation Strategy Project (APEIS)
    Lead Partner:
    Government of Japan - Ministry of the Environment  
    Geographical Scope:
    Regional  
    Summary:
    The main objectives of APEIS include: * To develop scientific knowledge-based tools and innovative strategy options to promote informed decision-making for sustainable development, for the use of policy makers in the Asia-Pacific region as a common asset in the region * To promote regional cooperation and capacity building, so as to enable Asia-Pacific countries to formulate and implement their ...
  • Cities for Climate Protection Campaign
    Lead Partner:
    Local Government of Cities of Buenos Aires and Avellameda - Local Government of City of Graz - 7 Brazilian Local Governments - 133 Canadian Local Governments - Local Government of City of Tome - Local Government of City of Krnov - Local Government of City of Copenhagen - 46 Finnish Local Governments - 8 German Local Governments - Local Government of City of Kallithea - Local Government of Cities of Budapest and Miskolc - 17 Indian Local Governments - 10 Indonesian Local Governments - 7 Italian Local Governments - 4 Japanese Local Governments - 8 Mexican Local Governments - Local Government of Cities of Amsterdam and Rotterdam - 17 New Zealand Local Governments - 14 Philippines' Local Governments - Local Government of City of Gdansk - Local Government of Cities of Almeda and Lisbon - 12 South African Local Governments - Local Government of City of Barcelona - Local Government of Cities of Goteborg, Stockholm and Vaxjo - 6 Thai Local Governments - 55 U.K. Local Governments - 159 U.S. Local Governments  
    Geographical Scope:
    Global 
    Summary:
    The Cities for Climate ProtectionTM (CCP) Campaign enlists cities to adopt policies and implement measures to achieve quantifiable reductions in local greenhouse gas emissions, improve air quality, and enhance urban livability and sustainability. More than 650 local governments participate in the CCP, integrating climate change mitigation into their decision-making processes. ICLEI runs this highl...
  • Asia Forest Partnership (AFP)
    Lead Partner:
    Government of Indonesia - Ministry of Forestry - Government of Japan - Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan - The Nature Conservancy (TNC) - Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR)  
    Geographical Scope:
    Regional  
    Summary:
    Asia Forest Partnership(AFP) promotes sustainable forest management in Asia through addressing the following 5 urgent issues; - Good governance and forest law enforcement - Developing capacity for effective forest management - Control of illegal logging - Control of forest fires - Rehabilitation and reforestation of degraded lands The partnership acts as a catalyst for already existing init...
  • ADRICOSM - ADRIatic sea integrated COastal areaS and river basin Management system pilot project
    Lead Partner:
    Government of Italy - Ministry for the Environment and Territory - Government of Italy - Ministry for the Environment and Territory  
    Geographical Scope:
    Regional  
    Summary:
    The ADRICOSM Partnership was launched as a Type II Initiative at the World Summit on Sustainable development in Johannesburg (2002) by the Italian Ministry for the Environment and Territory. It was based upon the implementation of the ADRICOSM Pilot Project, within the governmental framework of the Adriatic Ionian Initiative for the Environmental Protection of the Adriatic Sea and its coastal area...
  • POGO-IOC-SCOR Initiative for Intelligent Use and Management of the Oceans
    Lead Partner:
    Partnership for Observation of the Global Oceans (POGO)  
    Geographical Scope:
    Global 
    Summary:
    To promote intelligent and sustainable use and management of the oceans through (i) Promotion of collaboration and co-ordination among major oceanographic institutions committed to ocean science; (ii) Development of capacity in the weaker countries for using and managing their ocean space under UNCLOS intelligently; (iii) Advocacy for sound use and management of the oceans...
  • Tourism Satellite Account system for African countries
    Lead Partner:
    Government of South Africa - Department of Environment and Tourism (DEAT) - Government of South Africa - Statistics South Africa (StatSA)  
    Geographical Scope:
    Regional  
    Summary:
    The Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) system, which is a statistical tool that measures the total economic impact of tourism, was developed by the World Tourism Organization (WTO) in 1995 with the objective of defining a new statistical instrument to assist government officials, business executives and stakeholders within the tourism industry to make informed decision. The benefits of a Tourism S...
  • WSSD Integrated Global Observing Strategy (IGOS)
    Lead Partner:
    United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) - European Space Agency (ESA)  
    Geographical Scope:
    Global 
    Summary:
    The principal objectives of the Integrated Global Observing Strategy are to address how well user requirements are being met by the existing mix of observations, including those of the global observing systems, and how they could be met in the future through better integration and optimization of remote-sensing (especially space-based) and in situ systems. The Integrated Global Observing Strategy...