New Laboratories and GIS Facilities Support the Environment General Authority in Libya

Libya
Cutting the ribbon of the new facilities (credit: UNDP)

Libya has undergone a serious political change during 2011, and is currently going under intensive political and institutional reforms. The Environment General Authority is part of this development and changes, and has a new set of responsibilities and priorities to look after during the upcoming few months/years.

In light of this development, the Environment General Authority (EGA) has strengthened and developed further the needed partnership with UNDP to implement several initiatives that will assist it in protecting environment and preserving natural resources for the welfare of present and future generations.

Highlights

  • Launching part of Environment General Authority (EGA) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) partnership
  • UNDP: there is a need for "developing of a facilitative policy and legislative climate, and the necessary national capacity building and awareness-raising"
  • Event was attended by more than 80 participants from different government ministries/authorities/organizations, private companies, non-governmental originations, and the academic sectors.

As part of this cooperation between, a launching of two state-of-the art facilities was held on Tuesday, 26th February 2013 at Environment General Authority showing the environmental laboratories and the geographic information system facilities. The two facilities serve as inspiration for joining hands for environmental protection and human development in Libya.

The launching was organized by the Environment General Authority (EGA) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and is part of the $ 4.43 million project “Equipping the Laboratories of the Environment General Authority” which aimed to equip the laboratories of EGA in order to qualifying them to carry out monitoring functions, and in addition performing inspection for pollutants.

Furthermore, these laboratories are expected to have a hold over the Country’s imported goods to assure its adherence to the Libyan environmental specifications and standards. Through equipping the laboratories with proper checking apparatus, the project hopes to ensure the foundation of strength of the monitoring system and also to contribute to effective environmental management.  It also builds on the $2.33 million project “Establishing of an Environmental Geographic Information System” which aimed to support the EGA in planning, designing, and implementation of an environmental geographic information system to better support EGA responsibilities, e.g. monitoring, assessing and responding to various environmental conditions and emergencies that occur in Libya.

The launching is a market testing for services of EGA that were created based on sustainable management of environmental resources. The launching is a start-up phase with the aim to improve the EGA chances of long-term, technical viability.

Capacity Development, in particular, is an area of work often overlooked, yet it is critical to success and relatively expensive to achieve.  These projects are therefore proposing to develop the needed human and technical capacity that will help to draw in more financial and technical support.

Mr. Overvest reiterated at the launching event that “a necessary requisite for the success of these endeavors is the removal of barriers to sustainability by developing a facilitative policy and legislative climate, and the necessary national capacity building and awareness-raising tied to it”.

To this end, last year, and as part of UNDP –EGA cooperation, a capacity building project has been re-designed to complement some other projects addressing staff training and building data-base for environmental assessment and monitoring. The project intends to develop the needed capacity to the GIS and Laboratories teams to assist in making appropriate management decisions leading to sound environment management.

A tour in the new laboratories facilities and the geographic information system offices has been undertaken by the participants with detailed presentations made by the technical teams.

These initiatives will pave the way for all the efforts towards the protection and sustainable management of environmental resources in Libya.

The event was attended by more than 80 participants from different government ministries/authorities/organizations, private companies, non-governmental originations, and the academic sectors.