How can we improve the sustainable management of natural resources in Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Countries in line with the development of EU policy?
The EU is a key player in global efforts towards peace, security, sustainable development, solidarity and mutual respect among peoples, free and fair trade, eradication of poverty and the protection of human rights. Sustainable development in the common effort towards reaching the Millennium Development Goals constitutes the primary objective of the EU’s development policy. As environment and natural resources are crucial in this context, it is of the utmost importance to help developing countries to address the issue of improved and sustainable management of their natural resources and to mainstream environmental issues appropriately, in order to meet the overall objective of sustainable development.
Dynamic information on the location, condition and evolution of environmental resources, on food availability and demand, and on crisis situations are needed for Europe to properly define, target, implement and evaluate its development aid strategies and programmes. The main role of the JRC in this strategic area is to provide tools for the monitoring of ecosystems and agrosystems and to contribute to the understanding of the interactions between development, environment, and security issues.
This analysis will rely heavily on data from Earth observing satellites. However, in order to provide comprehensive information to the EC and the beneficiary countries’ decision makers, the satellite data will be complemented by the integrated analysis of socio-economic and in-situ information.
The information will also help the European Commission to meet legal obligations arising from Multilateral Environmental Agreements such as the Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Convention to Combat Desertification, including regional foci for external policies such as the AMESD Programme for the African continent and the “Forest Law Enforcement Governance and Trade” Programme (FLEGT).
Market scene in central Ghana, near Bui National Park. Picture by Andrew Hartley
• To improve the characterisation of land cover/use of the continent and land cover change at the national level with a particular focus on the agricultural domain.
• To map and measure changes in forest resources in Africa and to develop an link to the African Forests Observatory (FORAF).
• To document the quality of high biodiversity regions and to assess the level of threats from human activities (agriculture, logging, fires).
• To monitor surface water resources in arid to sub-humid regions of Africa and to understand the links between climate, land-cover and water availability and their impact on human activity.
• To develop knowledge management and integrated analysis systems combining environmental and socio-economic variables for improving decisions in the water sector in developing countries (Water4Dev).
• To document changes on urban areas and urban expansion in sub-Saharan Africa.
• To examine medium- and long-term changes in water quality and ecosystem functioning in African marine and coastal waters.
• To combine multiple environmental and social variables in an integrated analysis system for improving decisions in different domains, such as rangeland management or locust detection.
• To set up an operational structure for the ACP Observatory for Sustainable Development and develop reporting tools in line with the expectations of the DGs.
• To provide scientific and technical support to DGs dealing with UN environmental conventions and to UN bodies in charge of Environment.
- DG Development (DEV)
- Europe Aid Office (AIDCO)
- EC Delegations in ACP countries
- DG Environment (ENV)
- Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO)
- United Nations Environment Program (UNEP)
- United Nation Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)
- Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)
- United Nation Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD)
- EU Consensus on Development
- Environmental Integration in Development Co-operation
- Forest Law Enforcement Governance and Trade agreement (FLEGT)
- EU Strategy for Africa: Towards a Euro-African pact to accelerate Africa’s development
- Global Monitoring of Environment and Security
- Cotonou Agreement
Philippe Mayaux - Tel.: +39-0332-789706 E-mail: philippe.mayaux(at)jrc.ec.europa.eu