Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA)

HQ: Beirut, Lebanon

Focal Point: Halim Nader

Email: naderh [at]


Key Figures: Greenhouse gas emissions


Key Figures: Waste


Key Figures: Water


Executive Secretary’s message


"Regional assessments conducted by ESCWA in collaboration with its global and regional partners confirm that the threats posed by climate change on Arab States are real. Temperature is already increasing and is being exacerbated by an increase in the frequency of consecutive hot days and dry days. Meanwhile, water scarcity is becoming more apparent at the annual and seasonal levels across the Arab region. ESCWA aims to contribute to global efforts to offset the effects of climate change on Arab States by helping to make its facilities and operations climate neutral and more resource efficient. Climate controls have been put into place to reduce emissions as well as water saving technologies to reduce water waste, alongside efforts to recycle the materials used in our daily work. In addition, ESCWA is increasingly moving towards virtual meetings taking advantage of the developments in communication technology, and promoting the use of such technology to its member countries including use of WebEx and video conferencing. These initiatives support global efforts aimed at Greening the Blue.”

Dr. Mohamed Ali Al-Hakim, Executive Secretary, UNESCWA




ESCWA provides a framework for the formulation and harmonization of sectoral policies for member countries, a platform for congress and coordination, a home for expertise and knowledge, and an information observatory. ESCWA activities are coordinated with the divisions and main offices of the Headquarters of the United Nations, specialized agencies, and international and regional organizations, including the League of Arab States, the Organization of the Islamic Conference, and the Gulf Cooperation Council.


Experience so far


ESCWA has since 2009 already initiated a series of emission reduction measures and has in 2011 started the implementation of a series of new additional measures.


EMS and Reduction efforts


ESCWA has an Emission Reduction Strategy to improve environmental performance.


Inventory Management Plans


ESCWA’s inventory included:

  1. Purchased electricity
  2. Stationery combustion
  3. Refrigerants
  4. Air Travel
  5. Public transport
  6. Mobile sources (road transportation)
  7. Waste and water inventory


ESCWA’s 2017 emissions estimated at around 4,542 tons of CO2 equivalent were offset by purchasing CERs from the UN Voluntary Offsetting Platform.

Waste management


Non-hazardous waste is measured by weighing. Paper, cardboard, plastics and metal cans are weighed and recycled. ESCWA minimized the number of individual printers, and provided network printers with double-sided printing.

ESCWA is using 23 litres refillable plastic bottles for its water dispensers. 


Water Management


Domestic water consumption is measured by meters.

Next steps


Continue implementing energy saving measures and energy efficient operating schedules and explore possibilities to further reduce consumption and recycle plastic bottles and metal cans.