Background | Contribution to the official documents | Relevant analytical reports |
EAP Task Force mandate | Additional materials | Related events | Main outcomes of the Conference
The Seventh “Environment for Europe” Ministerial Conference took place in Astana (Kazakhstan) from 21 to 23 September 2011. The two main themes for the Conference were: (1) sustainable management of water and water-related ecosystems and (2) greening the economy: mainstreaming the environment into economic development.
The Conference in Astana took place 20 years after the start of the “Environment for Europe” process. Each previous conference helped to consolidate the role of environmental action in public policies of participating countries, preserve natural capital, and more generally close the gap in the “environmental welfare” of people in the pan-European region.
The OECD has been an active player of the “Environment for Europe” process throughout its entire history. In Lucerne (Switzerland) in 1993, Environmental Ministers established a Task Force for the Implementation of Environmental Action Programme (EAP Task Force) to help transition economies in the process of their environmental “reconstruction” and promote the integration of environmental policy goals into a broader development agenda. OECD’s Environment Directorate has facilitated the work of the Task Force since its inception. Currently, the Task Force continues to be one of the major contributors to policy dialogue within the “Environment for Europe” process: it has driven numerous policy reforms and better policy implementation in the partner countries, including on water-related issues. Within this framework, analytical work and country-level pilot projects have supported policy innovation and implementation. The results from a number of recently conducted studies served as background for discussions at the Astana Ministerial Conference.
Contribution to the official documents of the Astana Conference
Jointly with the UNECE Secretariat, the OECD/EAP Task Force Secretariat has developed a background paper for Ministers on sustainable management of water and water-related ecosystems, which was one of the main documents of the Conference. The Note describes recent trends, challenges and achievements as well as recommendations for the way forward in this area. It was prepared through a broad consultative process involving countries as well as partner organizations.
Relevant analytical reports prepared under the EAP Task Force umbrella
- Ten Years of Water Sector Reform in Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia. The objectives of this report are (i) to evaluate the performance of the water and sanitation sector in Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia (EECCA) over the last ten years and (ii) to identify key factors underlying that performance. The report draws policy recommendations to help countries stem the overall decline in WSS in EECCA, building on existing achievements, and tackle new challenges such as climate change, and public budget cuts in a context of global economic crisis.
- Private sector participation in water supply and sanitation in Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia. This document contains a regional review of experience with private sector participation, including proceedings from a thematic regional meeting, as well as the results of applying the “OECD Checklist for PSP in water infrastructure” by several Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia countries.
- Guidelines for performance-based contracts between water utilities and municipalities: Lessons learnt from Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia. This analytical report summarises the most recent experience with designing, negotiating and implementing performance-based contracts in the water supply and sanitation sector in selected Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia countries.
- Establishing a dynamic system of surface water quality regulation: Guidance for countries of Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia. This guidance document promotes the adoption of ambitious but feasible water quality requirements by building capacity for the preparation and implementation of the water quality planning and regulatory components of integrated water resources management in Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia (EECCA) countries. It is designed to help EECCA countries to progress with a “second generation” of water-related legislation.
- Greening public budgets in Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia. This analytical report presents the results from a survey of ten Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia (EECCA) countries on mainstreaming environmental programmes into public budgets. The analysis contains policy relevant recommendations on improving medium-term financial planning of environmental expenditure.
- Green growth and environmental governance in Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia. This paper presents an assessment of opportunities and constraints for green growth in Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia (EECCA), particularly as concerns the potential of current environmental policies to catalyse transition towards green economy and the capacity of environmental authorities to play a leading role in this process.
EAP Task Force mandate extension
The Draft Ministerial Declaration welcomes the work of the Environmental Action Programme Task Force and invites the OECD to continue this work, including on the themes of the Astana Conference, in cooperation with Regional Environmental Centres of Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia and other partners.
OECD Horizontal work
Main outcomes of the Ministerial Conference
For more information on the Astana Conference and different side events visit: http://www.unece.org/env/efe/Astana/welcome.html
EAP Task Force: Greening development in Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia (EECCA)