The Data for the Environment Alliance

Inger Andersen, UN Under Secretary General and UNEP Executive Director
"We need to accelerate the digital transformation. Because big data and new tech can support real time monitoring of the environment, help consumers adopt more sustainable behavior, create sustainable value chains."
Yana Gevorgyan, Director of Group On Earth Observations
"If I were to make a plea to ministries around the world is to recognize that the quality of information that we are able to produce really relies on accessibility to data. So open data is a vital element in this recipe of designing successful solutions"
H.E. Thuraya AlHashimi, Executive Director UAE Federal Competitiveness & Statistics Center
"We position the earth observation and big data as a key pillar in official statistics : planning and tracing progress. Harnessing the opportunities offered by artificial intelligence and remote sensing allows us to extract meaningful information from the imaginary and combine it with administrative data."
Laurence Monnoyer-Smith, Director Space Climate Observatory
"As data becomes both increasingly available and more complex, we urgently need to translate it into ready to use operational tools. It is a matter of allowing governments, regional organizations and local authorities to take action but also to inform and empower citizens."
As the world marks 50 years of environmental multilateralism, there is an urgent need to chart a more sustainable path to meet environmental targets. For we are not on a path to meet any.
Changing the current trajectory requires more robust science-based decision making, stronger accountability, greater transparency, and inclusion.
Because ‘we cannot manage what we cannot measure’, it is essential to create better access to reliable, real-time data on the state of the planet to help articulate more clearly the impact of human actions and drive science-based decision-making by Government, industry and society at large.
The Data for the Environment Alliance (DEAL) is a Member-State led global cooperation initiative initiated by the Government of Estonia and partner representing 34 countries. It is facilitated and supported by the UNEP Science-Policy-Business Forum (SPBF).
Deal launch event
UN SPBF 3rd Global Session - Opening and Big Data Session
Big data Big Deal
In 2018, the UNEP Science-Policy-Business Forum —working with the UNEA 3 Estonian Presidency, Bureau Members and technical partners across government, UN agencies, space agencies and the private sector — created a High Level Working Group on Big Data and Technology for the Planet, which made the case for the need to strengthen and align global efforts to develop an integrated, UN-led strategy and global platform to manage and share authentic and valid environmental data for decision making to set society on a more sustainable path.
In March 2019, lead by its Estonia Presidency and partner Member States, the UN Environment Assembly unanimously passed a Ministerial Declaration that mandated UNEP to develop a Big Data Strategy on the Environment. The UNEP@50 Ministerial Declaration reiterated the need for more robust data for the planet. Estonia wants to take the experience we have gained by adopting a data-driven government and new digital technologies and share it with and through DEAL. And we want all of you to add to this with your valuable experience and ideas.