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Study of current donor strategies and practices with regard to the environment
Mid December 2013 - mid March 2014

Key word: Environment /

The Joint UNEP/OCHA Environment Unit has been carrying out a study which aims to analyse the issues involved in integrating environmental considerations in the humanitarian sector, review current practices and determine existing opportunities and constraints in order to define areas to prioritise. As part of this study, Groupe URD conducted analysis specifically focused on donor policy and funds allocated to the environment in the humanitarian field.

Since the humanitarian reform of 2005, the environment has been defined as a cross-cutting issue to be included in the cluster system. However, the IASC evaluation of the cluster approach revealed that this issue was not sufficiently included in humanitarian action despite wide recognition that environmental considerations contribute to the quality of programmes. The Joint UNEP/OCHA Environment Unit has been carrying out a study which aims to: analyse the issues involved in integrating environmental considerations in the humanitarian sector; review current practices; and determine existing opportunities and constraints in order to define areas to prioritise.

As part of this study, Groupe URD analysed donor policies and the funds allocated to the environment in the humanitarian field.

To do this, a systematic review of strategy documents has been carried out in order to assess the level of integration of environmental issues. Funds allocated to the environment have also been analysing (using the databases of the OECD and OCHA’s Funding Tracking System) and interviews have been conducting. This made it possible to evaluate the level of coherence between donor strategy and funds effectively allocated.

The study therefore established a detailed review of current donor strategies and practices, promoted innovative approaches like Environmental Markers, and highlighted the major challenges which remain (such as the fact that there are no mechanisms to monitor the funds allocated to the environment specifically for the humanitarian sector).

Evaluation and studies will be conducted in the following years to assess the evolutions in that field. For instance, in keeping with that study, Groupe URD worked with the JEU in April 2015 to evaluate these issues in the post-earthquake humanitarian response in Haïti.