Shared Environmental Information System
At the Seventh Environment for Europe Ministerial Conference (Astana, 2011) it was decided to develop a Shared Environmental Information Systems (SEIS) across the pan-European region to connect existing databases and make data more accessible.
SEIS facilitates regular environmental assessments and reporting. It links existing data and information flows relevant for national authorities in their monitoring and assessment activities by means of information and communication technologies.
In October 2013 the progress in establishing SEIS was reviewed by the UNECE Committee on Environmental Policy at its nineteenth session based on reports and notes prepared by European Environment Agency. At that meeting delegations reviewed the development of SEIS effectiveness and the targets and performance indicators to measure progress on SEIS development across the region.
At the sixteenth session of the Working Group on Environmental Monitoring and Assessment (Istanbul, Turkey, 16-17 April 2015), it was decided that SEIS should facilitate access to data and information produced in common formats and standards, as defined by 67 data sets grouped across seven thematic areas.
New data flows under the Pan-European SEIS
Air pollution and ozone depletion
25 data sets, including emissions of pollutants into the atmospheric air, ambient air quality and consumption of ozone-depleting substances.
4 data sets, covering air temperature, atmospheric precipitation, and greenhouse gas emissions, etc.
20 data sets, inter alia, renewable freshwater resources, total water use, population connected to water supply industry, nutrients in freshwater and population connected to wastewater treatment.
4 data sets, including, protected areas, forests and other wooded land and threatened and protected species.
Land and soil
2 data sets, including total land uptake.
4 data sets, covering final energy consumption, total primary energy supply, etc.
8 data sets, including waste generation and management of hazardous waste.
New targets and performance
In June 2016, during the Eighth Environment for Europe Ministerial Conference, UNECE ministers reviewed progress in establishing SEIS, including the main achievements and challenges and the way forward. The report on progress in establishing SEIS in support of regular reporting in the pan-European region sums up all the work accomplished since the start of SEIS monitoring.
ENI SEIS II East project
On 1 February 2016, the European Environment Agency (EEA) launched the ENI SEIS II East project together with the six Eastern Partnership countries (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine). The project is funded by the European Union. The objective of ENI SEIS II East is to continue the implementation of the Shared Environmental Information System (SEIS) principles and practices in the Eastern partnership countries. The project is managed by the EEA because of its extensive experience in facilitating cooperation and developing expertise through the European Environmental Information System and Observation Network (Eionet).
A common UNECE-EEA-UNEP approach, in support of national, regional and global reporting on the state of the environment, has been agreed and promoted since 2015. The regular high-level discussions between the UNECE, EEA and UNEP reflect a shared understanding of the challenges and opportunities to establish a regular assessment and reporting process across Europe and Central Asia, in support of SEIS. ENI SEIS II East builds on the synergies between the three partners.
For more information about ENI SEIS II please visit the project website: http://eni-seis.eionet.europa.eu/east
The ‘SEIS cookbook’ was prepared by the European Environment Agency (EEA). It is a guide to understanding the concept of Shared Environmental Information System. It is a living document, which is continuously updated with new examples as technology develops and new systems to support sharing of environmental information are introduced.
The bulk of the cookbook is devoted to case studies which show national and international implementation of SEIS elements, including at the EEA. These examples are collectively used to identify an emerging set of common trends, methods, tools and lessons which have been integrated into the ‘SEIS checklist’. The checklist can be used as a self-assessment tool to measure progress and identify areas that need further development.
SEIS Cookbook 2nd edition: English