The UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre (WCMC) has just released their 2007 annual report (PDF). The report notes that UNEP has been undergoing fundamental changes in how it works and operates, having now settled on six thematic priorities that include climate change; disasters and conflicts; ecosystem management; environmental governance; harmful substances and hazardous waste; and resource efficiency.
The UNEP WCMC’s mission of biodiversity resides primarily in the ecosystem management mission, but it also crosses over into many more of these six stated missions. The work being done at the boundaries between climate change and ecosystem management is of considerable signifigance.
At the heart of all activities is the center’s informatic program, and GIS is central in this program. The UNEP-WCMC’s World Database on Protected Areas debuted this year, and the new system provides a valuable means to share global data and interactive maps on protected areas.
As WCMC focuses on many different elements of sustainability with the aim of providing authoritative knowledge and data to address these issues, I look forward to covering what they accomplish in 2008 and beyond.