Taking account the environment in a Situation Analysis following a crisis
Guidance for Situation Analysis in Protracted Crises
How to do a Situation Analysis for protracted crises emergency response and recovery
The following questions can guide the inclusion of environmental considerations into a situational analysis of a protracted crisis, for example, the Humanitarian Needs Overview:
Are existing IDP refugee settlements located/constructed in a sustainable manner?
What is the primary source of energy in the population settlement?
Are the root causes of the conflict related to the environment, or to conflict over natural resources?
Are natural resources a source of revenue for conflict parties?
Is the conflict over and is access to water and fertile land a major factor of conflict in the protracted crises?
Is there evidence for the presence of toxic remnants of war that might trigger negative environmental impacts?
Provide context-specific guidance which considers the environment and natural resource needs of affected communities in order to better inform response.
Note that a local environmental situational analysis contextualizes the situation, thereby avoiding the provision of generic global guidance on environmental mainstreaming. This is particularly important in contexts where a humanitarian crisis is likely to continue for many years1.
Engage in joint analysis with other humanitarian actors to include environmental considerations into the situational analysis overview, such as the Humanitarian Needs Overview (HNO).
For example, this can be done through a Remote Environmental Analysis working group for environment and humanitarian actors, that aims to strengthen the inclusion of environmental data in remote analysis by quickly identifying and analysing top environmental issues relevant to the crisis or response, and feeding them in to OCHA’s wider remote analysis work. To be involved in the global group contact the Joint Unit.
Ensure that the environment is properly captured in the HNO or similar documents to strengthen the rationale for environmental programs and mainstreaming. The following environmental dimensions and data layers are important to consider:
land cover and land use.
known natural hazards and sources of potential risk to human health (e.g. waste dumps).
location of surface- and groundwater (including quality and flow data if possible).
location of forests, woodlands and other potential sources of energy.
location of environmentally sensitive sites, protected areas and cultural sites.
known indigenous land claims, land cadastres and natural resource concession boundaries.
distribution of known resource-dependant livelihoods.
The data collection and analysis process for the HNO is supported by clusters, humanitarian organizations, technical experts and community representatives. Therefore, environmental actors present in field operations should make sure to take part in the collection and analysis process to include environmental factors into the HNO.
Assessing the environmental consequences of an emergency and prioritizing the response actions based on the needs, forms the foundation of a coherent, efficient and sustainable humanitarian response.
Response and Recovery Planning
Environment is included into response plans in order to improve programme quality and accountability to disaster-affected people.
Environmental mainstreaming is dependent on successful resource mobilization, where environmental concerns must be integrated in funding proposals in order to secure funding.
Successful integration of environment into the implementation of humanitarian response requires that environment be included into preparedness and planning phases, but also effective coordination with national actors.
Response monitoring is about creating evidence for humanitarian actors about what actions should be taken to address shortcomings and fill gaps in in the response, with the aim of improving accountability towards affected populations, local government, donors and the general public.