WASHINGTON, DC and GENEVA‒ Anew website providing users with free access to dozens of case studies as well as teaching and training materials on the role of natural resources in peacebuilding was launched by the Environmental Law Institute (ELI), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the University of Tokyo, and McGill University on November 6th.
Launched on the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict, the website will serve as a global platform for sharing information, experiences, and learning on the linkages between natural resources, conflict, and peace.
“A key goal of the Environmental Peacebuilding platform is to provide resources to decision- makers, practitioners and researchers on how to improve peacebuilding through more effective natural resource management,” said UNEP Executive Director and UN Under-Secretary- General Achim Steiner.
The contents of the site were produced as part of a broad collaboration led by ELI, UNEP, McGill University, and the University of Tokyo, together with 225 researchers and practitioners around the world. Six books including 150 case studies and other analyses examining experiences from 60 conflict-affected countries and territories are being released to the platform, with 76 case studies already available online.
Welcoming the platform, Jatou Jallow, the Head of the Environment Protection Agency for Sierra Leone, said: “Managing our minerals and other natural resources must be done in ways that generate revenues, equitably distribute wealth, alleviate poverty and mitigate environmental and social impacts. Having access to the resources and knowledge on this website will greatly help us along that path.”
“This new knowledge platform will grow as resources and materials are added by users,” explained ELI President John C. Cruden. “We view this as the foundation to support and catalyze the growing and vital community of practice on peacebuilding and natural resources.”
The six books produced through the Global Research Programme can be purchased online; each chapter is available for download free of charge six months after its original publication date.
The knowledge platform is made possible through the generous support of the Government of Finland, the United States Agency for International Development, the European Union, the EU- UN Partnership on Land and Natural Resources, and other partners.