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The 9th meeting of the SPECA Project Working Group on Statistics on the topic Environmental Information systems: from Environmental Indicators to the System of Environment-Economic Accounting (SEEA) took place in Baku, Azerbaijan, on 25-27 June. The meeting's goal was to address the call of the Rio+20 Summit and post-2015 agenda aimed at providing support to governments in integrating relevant data into national statistics for monitoring sustainable  development in all its dimensions, particularly green growth/economy and the preservation of  ecosystems.

As raw and processed data for environment comes from multiple sources both inside and outside national statistical offices, the compilation of environment statistics and the SEEA requires coordination amongst all data providers and producers of official statistics. The participants agreed to establish national environmental-economic accounts working groups involving users and data producers to address these coordination challenges. The meeting also stressed the importance of establishing priorities for focusing resources towards a sustainable programme for producing a regular time series and involving continuous improvements to data quality. SPECA countries expressed the need for international and bilateral technical support during the process of the implementation of the SEEA through targeted international seminars and training workshops. Donors and beneficiaries were urged to participate in the two annual surveys developed by Eurostat and UNECE on donor coordination and follow-up of the implementation of recommendations as a prerequisite for the successful implementation of the UNDA project: Strengthening National Capacities for the Sustainable Development of Statistics. 

The meeting was jointly organized by the State Statistical Committee of Azerbaijan, the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). It also benefited from the participation and substantive contributions from Statistics Norway, TurkStat, Eurostat, the Interstate Statistical Committee of the Commonwealth of the Independent States (CIS-STAT) and the Institute Cadaster (Russian Federation).

For more information, please visit: http://www.unece.org/stats/documents/2014.06.speca.html
or contact: statcoop@unece.org