10 May 2019

The Global Environment Outlook report 2019

Manifest Pedagogy

The International reports and indices are of immense importance because time and again the direct questions have come on the institutions which make report or calculate index, their constitution and the latest rankings of the countries. As far as the mains answers are concerned, these reports and rankings will add weight to the answers and fetch more marks. One need to make chart of all international reports and indices and revise them.

In news

The Global Environment Outlook report 2019

Placing it in the syllabus

Environment: Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment

Static dimensions

  • History
  • About the report

Current dimensions

  • The Global Environment Outlook report 2019
  • Key highlights of the report



The Global Environment Outlook (GEO) is often referred to as UN Environment’s flagship environmental assessment.  The first publication was in 1997 and was originally requested by the Member States. It is a flagship report because it fulfills the core functions of the organization, which date back to the UN General Assembly resolution that established the UN Environment Programme in 1972.

The Global Environment Outlook report

  • The Global Environment Outlook (GEO) is a consultative and participatory process to prepare an independent assessment of the state of the environment, the effectiveness of the policy response to address these environmental challenges and the possible pathways to achieve various internationally agreed environmental goals.  
  • The process also builds capacity for conducting integrated environmental assessments and reporting on the state, trends and outlooks of the environment.
  • The Global Environment Outlook (GEO) is also a series of products that informs environmental decision-making for not only governments but also various stakeholders such as the youth, businesses and local governments and aims to facilitate the interaction between science and policy.
  • The assessment report itself is the main product of the process and synthesizes data, information and knowledge about the environment with the hope that it will inform future decisions and actions on the environment, leading ultimately to positive change.

Key Highlights of the Global Environment Outlook report 2019

  • It was the 6th edition of the report.
  • The sixth Global Environment Outlook (GEO-6), under the theme “Healthy Planet, Healthy People”, aims to provide a sound, evidence-based source of environmental information to help policymakers and all of society to achieve the environmental dimension of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and internationally agreed environmental goals, and to implement the multilateral environmental agreements.
  • It does so by assessing recent scientific information and data, analysing current and past environmental policies and identifying future options to achieve sustainable development by 2050.
  • GEO-6 builds on the findings of previous GEO reports, including the six regional assessments (2016), and outlines the current state of the environment, illustrates possible future environmental trends and analyses the effectiveness of policies.
  • GEO-6 is made up of four distinct but closely linked parts.
    • Part A assesses the state of the global environment in relation to key internationally agreed goals such as the Sustainable Development Goals.
    • Part B provides an analysis of the effectiveness of the policy response to these environmental challenges.
    • Part C reviews the scenarios literature and assesses pathways towards achieving Agenda 2030 as well as achieving a truly sustainable world in 2050.
    • Part D identifies future data and knowledge necessary to improve our ability to assess environmental impacts.
  • This flagship report shows how governments can put the world on the path to a truly sustainable future.
  • It emphasizes that urgent and inclusive action is needed by decision makers at all levels to achieve a healthy planet with healthy people.
  • GEO-6 concludes that unsustainable human activities globally have degraded the Earth’s ecosystems, endangering the ecological foundations of society.
  • The report states that urgent action at an unprecedented scale is necessary to arrest and reverse this situation, thereby protecting human and environmental health and maintaining the current and future integrity of global ecosystems.  

Key actions include;

    • Reducing land degradation, biodiversity loss, and air, land and water pollution.
    • Improving water management and resource management.
    • Climate change mitigation and adaptation.
    • Resource efficiency.
    • Addressing decarbonization, decoupling and detoxification, and
    • The prevention and management of risk and disasters.
  • In line with the Sustainable Development Goals, GEO-6 shows that environmental issues are best addressed in conjunction with related economic and social issues, taking into account synergies and trade-offs between different goals and targets, including consideration of equity and gender dimensions.
  • GEO-6 shows that a healthy environment is the best foundation for economic prosperity, human health and well‐being.
  • The report states that a quarter of all premature deaths and diseases worldwide are due to manmade pollution and environmental damage.
  • The GEO-6 warns that deadly emissions, chemicals polluting drinking water, and the accelerating destruction of ecosystems crucial to the livelihoods of billions of people are driving a worldwide epidemic that hampers the global economy.
  • According to the report the growing divide between rich and poor as rampant overconsumption, pollution and food waste in the developed world leads to hunger, poverty and disease elsewhere.
  • The GEO-6 states that poor environmental conditions are responsible for around 25% of global disease and mortality, resulting in around 9 million deaths in 2015 alone.