Supporting good governance

Good Governance for a Sustainable Future

Safe and healthy societies only exist when we manage our environment responsibly. The Asia Pacific region is the largest and fastest growing region in the world. Meeting environmental commitments and achieving Sustainable Development Goals in this dynamic region requires well-crafted policies and laws that are transparently implemented and enforced by strong institutions.

"We may sometimes think of the law as something divorced from our day-to-day lives, but for many of us it is the reason we can still breathe fresh air, drink clean water, and sleep safely at night. Sadly, it is also the reason why so many cannot. At UN Environment we are working with countries to influence the policies and law making processes that will enable people to live dignified lives - wherever they are. "


Erik Solheim,Executive Director of UN Environment

What we are doing

Strengthening environmental laws and institutions

Clear and fair environmental laws – when properly enforced – allow countries to implement environmental policies and achieve environmental goals and obligations. For instance, well-crafted laws can attract and appropriately regulate domestic and international private investments into low-carbon and climate resilient development, place safe limits on pollution, combat illegal wildlife trade, and safeguard environmental rights. This is why UN Environment works with governments, parliamentarians, civil society, businesses, universities and other stakeholders to develop strong laws and empower institutions that enforce them. All of this work is informed and framed by relevant goals and targets of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Our flagship initiatives

  • Pollution Law
  • Climate Law
  • Wildlife Law

Promoting regional coherence and action

By supporting regional intergovernmental platforms, UN Environment plays a key role in helping countries articulate a regional voice on environmental priorities.

Asia Pacific Forum of Ministers and Environment Authorities

A flagship initiative in the region, this forum brings together ministers and high-level delegates from the 41 countries served by UN Environment’s Asia Pacific office.  It helps promote common understanding on regional environmental priorities and informs the agendas and outcomes of the UN Environment Assembly.

Delegates at the First Forum of Ministers and Environment Authorities of Asia Pacific in Bangkok, Thailand

Acid Deposition Monitoring Network in East Asia

UN Environment hosts the Secretariat of the Acid Deposition Monitoring Network in East Asia. This network started in 1998 as an intergovernmental initiative to create shared understanding on acid deposition problems in East Asia, promote cooperation among countries, and provide useful inputs for decision making  to prevent and reduce adverse impacts on the environment. Thirteen countries in East Asia participate in the network.

Asia Pacific Clean Air Partnership

Through the Asia Pacific Clean Air Partnership, UN Environment provides an intergovernmental platform to generate and share knowledge on regulations, policies, economic instruments, and technologies to tackle air pollution in the region. It brings together countries, networks and initiatives that focus on clean air in the region.

Asia Pacific Adaptation Network

UN Environment hosts the  the Asia Pacific Adaptation Network,  a regional programme for managing and applying climate change adaptation knowledge in the region.  Its mission is to build climate change resilient and sustainable societies, ecosystems and economies through the mobilisation of knowledge, enhanced institutional capacity, informed decision making, and facilitated access to finance and technologies.

Regional Forum on Environment and Heath

UN Environment and the World Health Organisation support countries in the region to deal with environmental health problems through sharing knowledge, improving policy at national and regional levels, and promoting the implementation of integrated environmental health strategies and regulations. We have been jointly hosting  the biennial Regional Forum on Environment and Health  since 2007. The most recent one took place on October 2016 with 217 participants from more than 30 countries in Asia Pacific.

Mainstreaming environment into development planning, budgets and investments  

Poverty-Environment Initiative

Together with the United Nations Development Programme, UN Environment established this flagship initiative which supports country-led efforts to integrate the twin priorities of poverty alleviation and environmental sustainability into planning, budgeting, monitoring and investment management processes. In Asia Pacific, the initiative works with eight countries, namely Bangladesh, Bhutan, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal and Philippines on issues related to climate finance, public and private investments in natural resources and extractive industries.