Skip to main content

UN System Works Together to Reduce Environmental Footprint

UNEP, in collaboration with hundreds of UN personnel from across the UN System, annually collects and analyses information provided by entities on their environmental impacts and publishes this data and case studies in the Greening the Blue Report: The UN System’s environmental footprint and efforts to reduce it. The 2020 edition, which was released Thursday 10 December 2020 online at, covers environmental impact data from 2019. It focuses on the impacts of over 310,000 personnel in Headquarters, field offices and operations on the ground. Data was provided by close to 60 UN System entities and one new member of the growing Greening the Blue community: The Green Climate Fund.

Of note, environmental governance has progressed across the UN System in 2019, with five additional UN entities advancing in their implementation of environmental management systems.

In terms of greenhouse gas emissions, the Greening the Blue Report 2020 found the UN System is continuing its downward trend. In 2019, per capita emissions of 6.5 tonnes CO2eq were generated. This is 22% less than the per capita emissions of 8.3 tonnes CO2eq that were reported in Greening the Blue Report 2010. As well, through Certificates of Emissions Reductions registered with the Clean Development Mechanism, 97 per cent of reported emissions were offset.