About the Committee
The ECE’s concern with problems of the environment dates back at least to 1971, when the group of Senior Advisors to the ECE governments on environmental issues was created which led into establishment the Committee on Environmental Policy (CEP).
The terms of reference of the Committee were developed to reflect the changing political conditions in the region and in October 2003 the Committe adopted the strategic goals contained in the document "Future UNECE strategic directions for the Environment", to become a guide for the Committee for the five/ten years to structure and continuosly adapt its programme of work.
The Committee on Environmental Policy (CEP) (see member States of the UNECE) meets annually, non-governmental organizations are invited to participate in those meetings. The Committee provides collective policy direction in the area of environment and sustainable development, prepares ministerial meetings, develops international environmental law and supports international initiatives in the region.
Its main aim is to assess countries' efforts to reduce its overall pollution burden and manage its natural resources, to integrate environmental and socioeconomic policies, to strengthen cooperation with the international community, to harmonize environmental conditions and policies throughout the region and to stimulate greater involvement of the public and environmental discussions and decision-making.
The Committee’s work is based on the three strategic pillars:
- Participation in the two major international cooperative processes, the "Environment for Europe" process and the regional promotion of Agenda 21;
- The development and carrying-out of Environmental Performance Reviews in the central and eastern European countries; and
The increase of the overall effectiveness of environmental conventions and of the exchange of experience on their implementation.