Environmental Situation Analysis

Environmental Situation Analysis

Analyzing the environmental issues and concerns in a societal context

Environmental Situation Analysis

Understanding the environmental context of an area of operations is a pre-requisite for an efficient response. When analyzing the current and potential future environmental conditions, it is important to reflect on how drivers of environmental change (such as urbanization and climate change) will affect ecosystem functions and services, as well as human well-being (see here for detailed information). This requires an understanding of the sources of risk stemming from the environment, but also risks to the environment. For example, degraded ecosystems may in the long run lead to a lack of clean water or reduced soil fertility, which in turn will affect human health and livelihoods.

Emergency managers will find that a lot of environmental data is of direct relevance for their work to prepare for disasters. Such data includes climate data, the location of protected areas, vegetation/land cover, pollution measurements, topographical and hydrological data, biodiversity levels, availability of natural resources, and natural hazard data. Useful sources of information include satellite images and maps, project reports from national and international environmental agencies, local knowledge and natural resources, environmental assessments, national/international environmental databases, wildlife and fisheries management plans, development plans, and land tenure records. In addition, various openly accessible databases on environmental performance exist that can be used to develop a general understanding of the environmental conditions of a country / region (see Guidance and Resources for specific examples).

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