Areas of work

Environment portfolio

Environment and sustainable development represented the most significant portfolio in terms of volume of activities and resources. Initiatives focused during the last few years on establishing a replicable model for protected area management, formulating a national strategy for solid and hazardous waste management, and strengthening environmental monitoring systems through the installation of laboratories that meet international standards, geographic information systems, and other modern tools. Following the conflict, the Environment portfolio has been revised and adjusted in accordance with the new pressing priorities of the country. To this effect, an International Environment Expert has been contracted by UNDP CO in order to address and finalize all pending issues of old projects.

Libya’s environmental challenges include:

  • Limited water resources;
  • Land degradation;
  • Fragmented mechanisms for environmental management and monitoring;
  • Inadequate solid and hazardous waste management; and
  • Oil spills.

Libya’s main concern has been to attain a sustainable water management strategy during its agricultural and economic development.

Action thus far

  • The government signed and ratified the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) on 14 June 1999.
  • Libya also signed the Convention on Biological Diversity in 1992, and in 2001 it ratified the convention, and subsequently established a National Committee on Biodiversity.
  • The Libyan Government ratified the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (CCD) on 22 July 1996, and assigned the People Committee of the Agriculture General Authority (AGA) as the Focal Point. A first national report (in English) to the CCD was submitted in 1999 and a second national report was prepared and submitted (in Arabic) in 2002.
  • A National Action Programme for Combating Desertification (NAP) has yet to be developed and for this the National Committee to Combat Desertification has been established under the General Secretariat of Agriculture.

Envisaged actions

  • The Country office is in the process of expanding the programme in line with the revised Country Programme Document and will support the environment and sustainable development portfolio in Libya with a more integrated approach taking into account the social and economic dimensions and focusing on priority actions that would aim at enhancing livelihoods, promoting economic diversification and protecting the natural resources and cultural heritage of the country.
  • Further, UNDP Country Office will provide technical advice and guidance to the GoL in implementing and fulfilling its commitments as a signatory of several International Conventions related to Environment and sustainable development Sector.
  • To this end, a scoping mission from the RCC Office is planned in November. In addition, a proposal for a round table discussion involving concerned counterparts on sustainable energy and development (needs, priorities and ways forward) has been submitted to the UNCT CivCap for possible funding.
  • A new project ‘Strengthening Environment General Authority’s Capacity for Sound Environment Management’ for an overall budget of 780 000 US$ was signed during this current year and merged the remaining activities of projects 00054203 - Establishing Environmental Geographic Information System (EGIS), 00054207 – Strengthening EGA capacity for sound environmental management, 00054208 – Equipping the laboratories of EGA.The project will assist the Government of Libya in tackling environmental issues through developing the capacity of the Environment General Authority (EGA) at the technical and management levels as per recommendations.

National counterparts

The main national counterparts of the programme are:

  • The General Water Authority (GWA)
  • The Environment General Authority (EGA)
  • Secretariat for Agriculture
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