UNEP Launches ‘UNEP-Live’
In order to facilitate information sharing and community engagement, UNEP launched an online platform that integrates information about goals, indicators and current data regarding the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The platform, called UNEP-Live, gathers community practitioners around the world who use the space to share knowledge and discuss the latest developments in their areas. Users can download reports and charts and can also upload and share their own data, exchanging near-real time information. One example is the Early Warning System in Africa group, which brings together all those working on or interested in developing early warning systems. Through UNEP-live, members can discuss methods and best practices that allow them to respond better to environmental challenges.
UNEP-Live has a database where reports and publications are stored. The website is fed from several sources of data such as UNEP itself, other partner institutions, and state databases. On the international level there are conference briefings and reports on multilateral environmental agreements. On the national level member states are now able to submit their reports informing on the implementation and monitoring statuses for the different conventions signed. Member states also have the option to feed into a country repository where they can store knowledge regarding national programs that then become searchable through the platform.
The website is an interactive tool where anyone can access country, regional, and global reports as well as download maps featuring environmental issues such as water sources and land use activities in a particular country or area. For instance, it is possible to find maps on Ebola cases or migratory species. The goal is to provide an easy to use space with tools and services that help organize the international community and coordinate efforts toward achieving the SDGs.
UNEP-Live responds to demand by developing countries that call for reliable, easily accessible, and clear information. Implementing conventions and monitoring projects can be a daunting task if we consider the vast array of environmental problems such as desertification, pollution, and habitat loss. These issues need to be considered by government representatives, policy makers, NGO practitioners, and other stakeholders. Coordinating concerns and inputs around so many issues and from so many sources is an important step taken by UNEP-Live. This will relieve the burden on administrative issues and will allow for more resources to be used towards implementing effective practices and achieving environmental and development goals more sustainably.