GEO-6 High Level Group meets to launch global assessment process

During the weekend prior to the 2nd United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA-2) the GEO-6 High Level Intergovernmental and Stakeholder Advisory Group (HLG) met to make decisions on various elements of the GEO-6 publication in order to launch the global assessment process. With the completion of the 6 GEO-6 regional assessments, the HLG recognized the importance of the findings in these assessments for the global process. The HLG requested the UNEP GEO-6 Secretariat to design a process whereby information from the regional assessments as well as from other recently published assessments be used as the foundation for the global assessment and publication. However, the HLG recognized the need for new analysis and innovation in areas where existing assessments may not have covered the subject matter sufficiently. In particular, the HLG felt that the forward-looking outlooks that are to be provided in GEO-6 would benefit from new analysis and innovative thinking.

The HLG also made important decisions for the GEO-6 author selection process and the annotated outline for the global assessment. These decisions are intended to help set the GEO-6 global assessment process on a sound footing and provide a clear path for the work on the assessment, from start to finish. The HLG stressed the need for the global assessment to focus on quality over speed of delivery and also recognized the importance of GEO as the flagship UNEP publication that helps inform government policy making on the environment.

The HLG is one of 2 main advisory bodies responsible for providing advice on the overall policy direction of the GEO-6 process and publication. The HLG works in collaboration with the Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP), which provides advice on issues of scientific credibility and legitimacy of the GEO-6 process.