The Joint UNEP/OCHA Environment Unit (JEU) together with its partners develops introductory and advanced trainings on a variety of environmental emergency preparedness and response topics.

Five online courses are available on the Environmental Emergencies Centre (EEC) in multiple languages:


Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Disasters and Ecosystems  

UNEP has designed, in partnership with the Cologne University of Applied Sciences, a MOOC entitled “Disasters and Ecosystems: Resilience in a Changing Climate”, which was launched in January 2015 through the iVersity MOOC platform. The course received an overwhelming response from around the world, with more than 12,000 candidates enrolled from 183 countries. For more information, visit: UNEP will continue to invest in developing additional MOOCs as a primary vehicle to reach a global audience. 

National Training Course on Ecosystem-based Disaster Risk Reduction

This Training Course specifically targets national and local government sectoral and planning agencies. The training seeks to improve knowledge of best practices in Eco-DRR and facilitate cross-sectoral collaboration amongst government agencies to implement Eco-DRR initiatives in their own country. The course has three separate components designed in a modular form:

  1. A high-level awareness-raising component targeting policymakers and decision makers (half-day in duration);
  2. A science/technology component demonstrating the theory of the ecosystem-based approaches for CCA and DRR and introducing various tools (2.5 days);
  3. A case study component which presents relevant examples from around the world and which could be calibrated to the specific country/thematic focus (1-2 days, including a field visit). 

UNEP has successfully delivered national-level trainings around the world, reaching more than 300 national-level participants, mostly from government ministries. More details of the course can be found at: or see the course flyer.

Graduate Course on Eco-DRR 

In order to sustain the training efforts as well as enrich the content, UNEP aims to embed the training within university curricula. Working with the Center for Natural Resources and Development (CNRD), a university consortium coordinated by the Cologne University of Applied Sciences based in Germany, UNEP developed a Graduate Module entitled “Disasters, Environment and Risk Reduction”.  The course contents were developed in collaboration with CNRD partner universities, and the course itself was initially delivered in CNRD partner universities. Currently, there are approximately 50 universities world-wide delivering the course or part of the course, and thus form part of our Eco-DRR university network.  More information on the course can be found at:

Regional Training of Instructors

In order to widen the reach of the Graduate Course and to further embed course materials in universities and training institutions around the world, UNEP has directly trained more than 300 faculty members from over 200 academic and teaching institutions.


Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Environmental Peacebuilding

This MOOC offers an introduction to the emerging field of environmental peacebuilding. Students will obtain a basic understanding of the roles of different natural resources (renewable and non-renewable) at different stages in the conflict lifecycle and how they change importance over time. This will include how natural resources and the environment can be drivers of conflict, how they are impacted by conflict, and how they can support national peacebuilding priorities. The course will also include best practices and lessons learned in how good resource and environmental governance can prevent and resolve disputes while supporting efforts to build peace, trust, and confidence among stakeholders.

Greening the Blue Helmets

As follow-up to the “Greening the Blue Helmets: Environment, Natural Resources and UN Peacekeeping Operations,” a series of four e-training modules is being produced in partnership with UNITAR and the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD). The first module was launched in October 2012, entitled, “Introduction to environment, natural resources and UN Peacekeeping Operations.”

Training on Land, Natural Resources and Conflict Prevention

Together with the European Union and five other UN partners – UNDP, DPA, UNEP, PBSO, HABITAT and DESA – UNEP is working to support countries to improve land and natural resource management for conflict prevention and peacebuilding. Through a joint programme coordinated by the UN Framework Team for Preventive Action and financed by the EU's Instrument for Stability, the first outcome of the project is a series of Guidance Notes, and an online self-paced learning tool covering the following themes: land and conflict, extractive industries and conflict, renewable resources and conflict, and capacity building for managing land and natural resources. This training will also be offered through the UN Staff College.

Natural Resources and Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration

A training course on Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) is offered through the Folke Bernadotte Academy which includes a module on DDR and natural resources. This module, designed by UNEP and UNDP, outlines the risks and opportunities from natural resources to DDR programmes.  The course is based on the UN Integrated DDR Standards (IDDRS). For more information see the course page.

Curriculum models on peacebuilding and natural resources

Emerging out of the series of edited volumes prepared in collaboration with the Environmental Law Institute (ELI), the University of Tokyo, and McGill University, a series of training materials on best practice in managing natural resources for peacebuilding will be produced.

Certificate Programme on Environment, Peace and Security.

In order to help establish the next generation of experts and practitioners, ECP also partnered with Columbia University to establish one of the world’s first ever Certificate Programme on Environment, Peace and Security. This 12-credit programme is offered over a period of two terms to both senior students and practitioners. As a complement to this course, ECP is collaborating with Columbia University, ELI and others to develop a Massive Open Online Course on Environmental Peacebuilding.