Towards Sustainable Development: Environmental Indicators

Towards Sustainable Development: Environmental Indicators

Towards Sustainable Development: Environmental Indicators

Towards Sustainable Development: Environmental Indicators


"Interest in sustainable development and awareness of the international dimension of environmental problems have stimulated governments to track and chart environmental progress and its links with economic conditions and trends. This publication presents leading environmental indicators from the OECD Core Set and thus contributes to measuring environmental performance and progress towards sustainable development." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved


In recent years, concerns about whether development is sustainable from an economic, environmental and social point of view have prompted a number of countries to further move towards policies focusing on pollution prevention, integration of environmental concerns in economic and sectoral decisions, and international co-operation. There is also increasing interest in evaluating how well governments are implementing their policies and how well they are satisfying their domestic objectives and international commitments. These demands have led to the development of environmental indicators as a tool for decision making and for assessing countries' environmental performance.

The OECD work programme on environmental indicators has led to several sets of indicators each responding to a specific purpose: an OECD Core Set of environmental indicators to measure environmental progress, and various sets of indicators to integrate environmental concerns in sectoral policies (e.g. energy, transport, agriculture). Indicators are also derived from natural resource and environmental expenditure accounts.

The present report is one of the products of this OECD work programme on environmental indicators. It includes leading environmental indicators, as well as selected socio-economic and sectoral indicators having an environmental significance. It highlights the linkages between environmental indicators, environmental performance and sustainable development, and thus provides a building block for the environmental component of sustainable development indicators.

This report was prepared by the OECD Secretariat, but its successful completion depended on personal or official contributions by many individuals in Member countries, and on the work and support of the OECD Group on the State of the Environment. This report is published on the responsibility of the Secretary General of the OECD.

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