Editor's Note

Most two-week periods in our publication cycle seem to have one or a few themes. Many times, the theme of the fortnight is related to an upcoming Conference of the Parties, with civil society, international organizations and governments releasing their reports in an effort to make their mark on the proceedings. Other times, the theme seems to be based on well-established, critical issues, such as climate change. … article continues

Lynn Wagner, Ph.D.

Editor, Linkages Update and MEA Bulletin

Coming and Goings
Akasaka Begins Tenure as Chief of UN DPI
Cristián Samper Named Acting Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution
Click here for more information on appointments and departures
OKACOM seeks Executive Secretary
Ramsar Convention Secretariat seeks a regional affairs officer
FAO seeks forestry officer
Click here for a full listing of job postings

New Reports and Resources

Linkages Africa 

Why Ecosystems Matter to Business

Markets for Ecosystem Services: A Potential Tool for Multilateral Environmental Agreements

Environmentalists Clash over Carbon Offsets

Ecosystem Challenges and Business Implications
Pay – Establishing Payments for Watershed Services
Subsidizing Biofuels Backfires
Archive of Publications on Environmental-Economic Accounting
A Review of Energy in National MDG Reports
State of the Environment Abu Dhabi
Labour and the Environment: A Natural Synergy
Asian Foreign Direct Investment in Africa: Towards A New Era of Cooperation Among Developing Countries
The Development Potential of Regional Programs
State of the World’s Forests 2007
Nature-Based Tourism – From Timber Production to New Products
A Row to Hoe: The Gender Impact of Trade Liberalization on our Food System, Agricultural Markets and Women’s Human Rights
Click here for more New Publications and Resources

African Regional Coverage

Want more information on sustainable development decision-making in Africa? Subscribe to AFRICASD-L, a peer-to-peer mailing list for news on our African Regional Coverage Project and sustainable development issues in Africa.

MEA Bulletin

Want more in-depth news on key multilateral environmental agreements and their secretariats? Sign up to our free new publication, MEA Bulletin.

Latest News - Thursday, 5 April 2007

Buenos Aires, 22 March—The fifth session of the Committee for the Review of the Implementation of the Convention (CRIC-5) of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) convened in Buenos Aires, Argentina, from 12-21 March 2007, to review implementation of the Convention in affected country parties in regions other than Africa. Accordingly, the Committee discussed national reports and the results of regional meetings in Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Northern Mediterranean and Central and Eastern Europe. The meeting also addressed how to improve information communication and national reporting, reviewed the 2006 International Year for Deserts and Desertification (IYDD), and conducted a Global Interactive Dialogue with stakeholders, among other activities. More.

Above photo: L-R: Romina Picolotti, Secretary of Environment and Sustainable Development of Argentina; Daniel Scioli, Vice-President of Argentina; and Franklin Moore, CRIC-5 Chair.


Rome, 17 March—The eighteenth session of the Committee on Forestry (COFO-18) of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) convened at FAO headquarters in Rome, Italy, from 12-16 March 2007. In their final report, COFO delegates requested and recommended that FAO undertake numerous activities related to the issues debated during the meeting, including forests and energy, forest protection, putting forests to work at the local level, progressing towards sustainable forest management and shaping an action programme for FAO in forestry. More.

Above photo: During COFO-18 delegates listened to presentations on forest and energy.


Vienna, 23 March—Two back-to-back meetings in Vienna, Austria, have focused on industrial energy efficiency and the Kyoto Protocol's flexible mechanisms. The Seminar on Industrial Energy Efficiency Projects in the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and Joint Implementation took place from 19-20 March 2007, and provided a forum for business and industry to discuss energy efficiency projects under these two mechanisms. Immediately following the seminar, an Expert Group Meeting on Industrial Energy Efficiency and Energy Management Standards was held, from 21-22 March 2007. This meeting focused on the practical aspects of optimizing the efficiency of electric motor and other industrial energy systems. The meetings were arranged by the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), in partnership with other groups. More.

Other News
Sustainable Development
Oslo Conference on Good Governance addresses sustainability
ECOSOC prepares for Annual Ministerial Review
More Sustainable Development News

Forests, Desertification and Land Issues
African governments discuss local community rights to own and manage forests
Africa losing forests faster than any other continent – FAO report
UNU hosts briefing on sustainable land management
More Forests News

Water, Wetlands, Oceans
Binding agreement to combat IUU fishing under way
Japan holds marine resource meeting amid threat to tuna
World Water Day 2007 addresses coping with water scarcity
Europe gets tough on polluting discharges at sea by vessels
More Water News
Climate and Atmosphere
IPCC Working Group II underway
G8+5 talks climate change
UK climate law introduced
Investment urged to counter weather impacts
Countries propose accelerating the phase-out of refrigerants
US$54.6 million approved to support phase-out of ozone-depleting chemicals

UNEP report finds UV radiation affects fish, amphibians

More Climate News

Biodiversity and Wildlife
G8+5 environment ministers call for estimating cost of biodiversity loss
Biosafety Protocol Compliance Committee meets in open session
CMS holds cetacean conservation meetings in Samoa
Funding agreement to safeguard rice biodiversity
New systems to boost access to genetic resources in Brazil and Peru
More Biodiversity News

Chemicals Management
Rotterdam’s Chemical Review Committee recommends including two pesticides in PIC procedure
Coalition of civil society groups releases report on end of life of ships
More Chemicals News

Intergovernmental Organizations
Regional consultation to enhance understanding of UN reform
UN Deputy Secretary-General talks on UN reform
G-77/China and NAM convey views on UN System-Wide Coherence
More IGO News

Trade, Finance and Investment
Private sector and IFIs discuss financing for clean energy
WTO’s environment committee discusses relationship with MEAs
WTO panel’s confidential report rejects environmental import restrictions on used tires
More Trade News

Key meetings in the next two weeks

Eighth Session of IPCC Working Group II: 2-5 April 2007, Brussels, Belgium

Symposium on the State of the Conservation of Whales in the 21st Century: 12-13 April 2007, New York, New York
Special High-Level Meeting of ECOSOC with the Bretton Woods Institutions, WTO and UNCTAD: 16 April 2007, New York, New York
Twenty-first Session of the UN-HABITAT Governing Council: 16-20 April 2007, Nairobi, Kenya
Seventh Session of the United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF-7): 16-27 April 2007, New York, New York

IISD Reporting Services will be reporting from:

Linkages Update delivers the latest news and information on international environment and sustainable development issues to your e-mail inbox twice every month. More information.