Clear Summaries of Scientific Reports on the

State of the environment

What is the current state of our ecosystems, forests and drylands? How is our environment affected by human activities?


Agriculture is closely linked to many concerns, including biodiversity loss, global warming and water availability.

The 2008 International Assessment of Agricultural Science and Technology for Development (IAASTD) focuses on how to make better use of agricultural science, knowledge and technology to reduce hunger and poverty, improve rural livelihoods, and foster equitable and sustainable development. More...

Latest update: 15 April 2008

Summary available in [en] [es] [fr] [nl

Water Resources Assessments

Water is essential for life, but humanity faces complex challenges related to increasing demand, variability of supply, widespread pollution and water-related disasters. More...

Latest update: 31 March 2021

Summary available in [en] [fr] [nl


Desertification, the persistent degradation of drylands, threatens many livelihoods.

The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) produced in 2005 by a large international panel of scientists explored possible options to avoid or reverse desertification and its negative impacts. More...

Latest update: 15 October 2006

Summary available in [en] [es] [fr

Ecosystem Change

Humans depend heavily on ecosystem for benefits such as food, but we also have a tremendous impact on them.

The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) produced in 2005 by a large international panel of scientists explored possible options to avoid or reverse desertification and its negative impacts. More...

Latest update: 15 March 2005

Summary available in [en] [es] [fr

Soils degradation

Soil is a vital resource for food security, but in Europe it is being degraded by pollution, overuse, and erosion. How could soil be protected? More...

Latest update: 10 March 2017

Summary available in [en] [fr


The UN Food & Agriculture Organization (FAO) regularly assesses the State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture. The key findings of its latest assessment were released in 2009.

Indeed, many fish stocks are being overexploited, and the international nature of the resources makes them difficult to manage. Is the current food supply in danger? More...

Latest update: 2 March 2009

Summary available in [de] [en] [es] [fr] [nl


Forests provide a wide range of benefits and are heavily exploited.

Every 5 years the UN Food & Agriculture Organization (FAO) updates its Global Forest Resources Assessment.

Its latest update published in 2006 considers what progress has been made towards sustainable forest management across the world. More...

Latest update: 15 January 2007

Summary available in [en] [es] [fr

Forests & agriculture land use

How can an integrated approach to land management help meeting the needs of the world’s growing population? More...

Latest update: 2 February 2018

Summary available in [en] [fr

Aquatic environment

Are the fresh and marine waters of Europe safe from pollution? More...

Latest update: 10 March 2017

Summary available in [de] [en] [fr

Marine Litter

The global production of plastics is increasing, and that increase is accompanied by an increase in plastic waste.

Part of this waste makes its way into the marine environment in the form of micro-plastics. What do we know about the extent of this problem? More...

Latest update: 15 March 2013

Summary available in [de] [en] [es] [fr

Marine litter

Plastic waste is a growing issue: plastic production is projected to double over the next decade, and without a planning for the effective management of waste, the social, economic and environmental impact is also projected to increase.


Latest update: 15 February 2019

Summary available in [de] [en] [fr] [nl

State of the European Environment

A comprehensive assessment of Europe’s progress towards achieving environmental sustainability. More...

Latest update: 20 September 2015

Summary available in [en] [es] [fr


Many species that are essential for biodiversity and for agricultural production, such as bees, are currently threatened. Since biodiversity underlies the food system, it is a critical issue for food security and for sustainable development. More...

Latest update: 25 April 2019

Summary available in [en] [fr

Sustainable oceans

How can we ensure that the sustainable use of the services and resouces that the oceans offer ? More...

Latest update: 29 March 2016

Summary available in [en] [es] [fr

Indonesian forests

More forest is cut down each year in Indonesia than in any other country.

What can be done to preserve Indonesia’s forests ? More...

Latest update: 25 October 2015

Summary available in [en] [es] [fr

Water Resources

Water is essential for human survival and well-being and important to many sectors of the economy. Yet, resources are unevenly distributed and they are under pressure due to human activity. How can water resources be managed sustainably while meeting an ever increasing demand? More...

Latest update: 15 January 2008

Summary available in [en] [es] [fr] [nl

Water resources

Demand for water in the world is steadily increasing at the same time as the water supply is facing challenges from pollution, climate change, desertification, agriculture. Can these challenges be met with solutions inspired by natural processes? More...

Latest update: 18 July 2018

Summary available in [en] [fr

Themes covered
Publications A-Z

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