Approaching the finishing line: Global consultation on the full SEEA EA

The global consultation on the complete draft of the System Environmental-Economic Accounting—Ecosystem Accounting (SEEA EA) has been launched and is ongoing until the end of November 2020. 

This is the last stage in the process towards the finalization of the SEEA Ecosystem Accounting and presents an opportunity to engage not only national statistical offices but also a broader community of experts in government, academia, mapping agencies and other non-governmental organizations. The input from this broad community, which is active in the compilation and/or use of data and statistics related to ecosystems, biodiversity, climate change, and land use, among others, will ensure that the SEEA EA provides a comprehensive and rigorous standardized methodology for ecosystem accounting.    

The current complete draft is the result of the monumental and concerted efforts of an interdisciplinary group of more than 600 experts from the statistical, accounting, geospatial, environmental economics and scientific communities, who contributed to the review and drafting of technical papers and provided inputs into the revision process. The core 9 chapters included in the full draft have been reviewed and commented on through expert review groups, the first global consultation on the substantive chapters, the discussions during the various sessions of the Forum of Experts on Ecosystem Accounting, the London Group on Environmental Economic Accounting, and bilateral consultations. The drafting has been technically supervised by the SEEA EEA Technical Committee, acting in their role as the Editorial Board of the revision as mandated by the UN Committee of Experts on Ecosystem Accounting. 

During the first round of global consultation on the substantive chapters, 9 individual chapters were made available for comment between March and August 2020. Over 200 sets of comments were received from a wide range of experts from national statistical offices, other government agencies, international organizations, NGOs, and independent experts. An overview document summarizing the chapters and the comments received and implemented into the chapters was prepared.   All the comments received were carefully reviewed by the editor, the editorial board and the various groups and have contributed to the development of a rich document.  In some cases, the comments reflected opposing views and as such a decision was taken on balance.  The comments received during the first global consultation are available on our website. 

The full draft will be the main topic of discussion of the Extraordinary Meeting of the UN Committee of Experts on Environmental-Economic Accounting (UNCEEA), which will take place on 16 and 18 November. The UNCEEA will present the document to the United Nations Statistical Commission in March 2021.

We encourage you to provide comments and feedback in this final stage of the SEEA EA. The documents related to the global consultation can be accessed via our websiteAll comments on the draft should be provided using the comments form, to be sent to by 30 November 2020.