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CLIMATE CHANGE Electronic Tools to Implement the Aarhus Convention ( A “Snapshot” of priorities, challenges and case studies) SB 18, Bonn Maria Khovanskaia.

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Presentation on theme: "CLIMATE CHANGE Electronic Tools to Implement the Aarhus Convention ( A “Snapshot” of priorities, challenges and case studies) SB 18, Bonn Maria Khovanskaia."— Presentation transcript:

1 CLIMATE CHANGE Electronic Tools to Implement the Aarhus Convention ( A “Snapshot” of priorities, challenges and case studies) SB 18, Bonn Maria Khovanskaia E-mail:

2 CLIMATE CHANGE Strengthening Information Society Aahrus Convention’s Electronic Tools Task Force to exchange good practice, know-how, and to provide capacity building support in the sphere of electronic information and communication technologies; focus: on technologies that can help to support the implementation of the Aarhus Convention; Dublin Sept, 2000: “snapshot” survey on ECE countries to identify priority wishes (“gaps”) wrt electronic tools and the Convention, and the challenges associated with implementation to identify the future activities was delegated to the REC Arendal, Norway, March, 2001: review of preliminary results

3 CLIMATE CHANGE “Snapshot” Survey Time: January-March 2001 Executing Agency: REC Donor: the Government of Japan Structure: Section 1: brief summary of the main findings Section 2: where priorities lay wrt implementing (electronically) the Convention’s specific provisions in the future. Methodology: a questionnaire where the key articles, paragraphs and sub- paragraphs were listed. Feedback was sought via a simple check list. Focus: on technologies supporting dissemination and public access. Section 3 details the priorities wrt specific technologies (such as Internet,email, digital message board, teletext and so on). Another questionnare.

4 CLIMATE CHANGE Snapshot Survey (cont) Section 4 identifies the key challenges and obstacles to implementing these technologies ranging from economic to cultural. Section 5. Application of electronic tools. Respondents were requested to submit the case studies and complete the third questionnaire. Section 6 draw some linkages between the usefulness of the case studies received and the highlighted priorities and challenges Section 7 provides recommendations Countries: Western Europe (Belgium Flanders, Denmark, Germany,Norway, Spain, UK), CEE (the Czech Republic, FYR Macedonia, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia) and NIS (Kazakhstan, Kyrgystan, Moldova, Ukraine)

5 CLIMATE CHANGE Snapshot survey Useful websites: Project staff: Jerome Simpson (Head of the information Programme) Stephen Stec (Legal specialist) Magdolna Toth Nady (Head of the PP Programme) Marianna Bolshakova (PM, PP Programme) Gabor Heves (Webmaster)

6 CLIMATE CHANGE Main findings Convention Article and Paragraph Priorities 1. Interest was greatest among countries in electronic tools that will assist in the dissemination of environmental information (under Art.5 of the Convention). Most popular were electronic media that will support the dissemination of: The type and scope of environmental information held by the public authorities; Lists/registries of environmental data and state of the environmental information; Policies, plans and programmes; Environmental progress reports 2. Of lesser importance were electronic tools that could facilitate public participation in specific projects under Art.6, while other electronic mechanisms facilitating public involvement in the preparation of legal instruments and policies (Art.7,8) received almost no interest

7 CLIMATE CHANGE Convention Article and Paragraph Priorities Regionally: The NIS region showed a broad interest in all areas of the Convention; The CEE and West European Sub-regions showed big interest in Art. 5 and limited interest in Art. 3 (information about Aarhus Convention) No interest from those two regions was shown in Art 7 an 8, nor Art.9 on access to justice

8 CLIMATE CHANGE Main findings Priorities for electronic tools The Internet was ranked the most important electronic tool for 1-way provision of access to environmental information. CD- ROM, email, SMS were considered to a lesser extent important tools for information dissemination; Telephone/fax machines, email, SMS were considered most popular as 2-way communication tools, rather that Internet; Newspapers, brochures and posters were important non- electronic tools

9 CLIMATE CHANGE Main findings Priorities for electronic tools Regionally: In Western Europe, the Internet was rated an important 2-way communication mechanism, besides electronic tools that support real-time state of the environment data capture, exchange and dissemination; In CEE, Internet and CD-ROM were most popular for publishing, and e-mail and public kiosks for dialog exchange; In the NIS, a keen interest was shown in a diverse selection of modern and traditional electronic tools, for dissemination and 2- way communication.

10 CLIMATE CHANGE Main findings Challenges and Obstacles to Implementation Institutional obstacles were rated the greatest challenge, followed closely by the economic constraints. In particular, the limited time available to learn more about new electronic tools and to implement them. Limited skills and expertise were related cultural obstacles; The limited standardization of data, and unclear rules and regulations regarding environmental and informational responsibilities were also common constraints. Regionally: In Western Europe, the increasing collection and dissemination of environmental information at local and regional levels is considered to be an obstacle, and as consequence, data ownership issues an software inoperability; In CEE, institutional challenges were most common; In the NIS region, economic costs, e.g. the high costs of online access and IT equipment were marginally more important than the institutional challenges

11 CLIMATE CHANGE Main findings Case Studies Electronic tools were commonly used to passively disseminate environmental information under Art. 5 and in relation to specific projects under Art.6. Very few related to the more interactive elements of Art.6, and 4, 7,8. Almost all of 36 case studies gathered relied on the Internet to disseminate information to the public. However, examples were also gathered regarding the use of telephone hotlines, CD-ROM, display boards, and email networks.

12 CLIMATE CHANGE Case Studies WEURCEENISROWTotal Electronic tools Noticeboards 11 Internet (for PC) 129627 SMS, email, Intranet, LAN/WAP 11 Tel.Hotline/Fax 22 Non-electronic tools Brochures, leaflets 11 Information Centers 213 Telecottages11

13 CLIMATE CHANGE Recommendations for policy makers  Increase attention towards the Internet as a 2-way communication medium (useful for interacting with citizens and enhancing the practice of “online governance”, hence, supporting compliance with Art. 6,7 and 8).  Liberalization of telecommunication market.  Standardization of environmental monitoring and reporting. 4. Adoption of the educational strategies.



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