The Environmental Rule of Law: Tracking Progress and Charting Future Directions report provides a comprehensive assessment of developments since the release of the First Global Report on Environmental Rule of Law in 2019. Through collecting and analysing data from a survey of 193 UN Member States regarding their laws, institutions, civic engagement, rights and justice, the report highlights the most prevalent aspects of environmental rule of law across countries and tracks progress in addressing the triple planetary crisis.

Six cross-cutting findings are highlighted: the COVID-19 pandemic has had significant impacts on environmental rule of law, both positive and negative; the recognition and integration of environmental rights has accelerated; there is growing attention to specialised environmental enforcement, particularly in the development and capacity building of institutions; women are champions of environmental rule of law; environmental rule of law is undergoing a technological revolution; and climate change continues to be both a dominant context for environmental rule of law efforts and a driver of actions to advance it.  

Further, the report makes four recommendations: standardize and track environmental rule of law indicators; develop guidance on environmental rule of law in emergencies and disasters; integrate social justice in environmental institutions; and establish a technology-policy interface.

This report seeks to fulfil the United Nations Environment Programme’s (UNEP’s) mandate to promote and advance environmental rule of law pursuant to UNEP’s 2013 Governing Council Decision 27/9, the 2019 United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) Resolution 4/20 which adopted the Fifth Montevideo Programme for the Development and Periodic Review of Environmental Law, as well as the Political Declaration of the special session of the UNEA to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the establishment of UNEP. 

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Environmental Rule of Law: Tracking Progress and Charting Future Directions
Environmental Rule of Law: Tracking Progress and Charting Future Directions
Document types
Goal 16
Access to information, Access to justice, Environmental Rule of Law, Human rights, Public participation