UNDP-UNEP Poverty-Environment Initiative (PEI)


Poverty-Environment Initiative is a joint programme of UNDP and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Launched in 2005, PEI supports country-led efforts to put pro-poor, pro-environment objectives into the heart of government by mainstreaming poverty-environment objectives into national development and sub-national development planning, from policymaking to budgeting, implementation and monitoring. 

PEI’s overall aim is to bring about lasting institutional change and catalyze key actors to increase investment in pro-poor environmental and natural resource management. With both financial and technical support, UNDP and UNEP assist government decision-makers and a wide range of other stakeholders to manage the environment in a way that improves livelihoods and leads to sustainable growth. The Initiative works with key government partners to raise awareness, influence policy making and strengthen the mainstreaming of poverty-environment into budget processes, sector programmes and sub-national planning. 

The Global Policy Centre on Resilient Ecosystems and Desertification (GC-RED) is responsible for the co-management of PEI, of which UNDP is the Managing Agent. It provides significant support, including in its strategic direction; the mainstreaming of PEI knowledge in UNDP and other partners; quality assurance and donor reporting. The Centre also supports PEI in facilitating learning across regions, packaging and disseminating its accumulated knowledge, and building tools for mainstreaming issues in the poverty environment nexus into development policies.  More >


Poverty Environment Action for Sustainable Development Goals (2018-2022)


Building on over a decade of the deep experience of PEI and expanding on the Initiative’s efforts to spearhead poverty-environment mainstreaming, UNDP and UN Environment launched a new four-year joint project, Poverty-Environment Action for Sustainable Development Goals (PEA) on 19 July 2018 in New York during the Experts Group Meeting on Promoting Integrated Approaches to Sustainable Developmenton.    

PEA will focus on shifting finance and investment towards environmental sustainability and climate objectives for poverty eradication and improving the environmental sustainability of current investments. The project aims to accelerate poverty-environment mainstreaming by fostering quality investments, especially for least developed countries where the gap in investment is greatest.

With the financial support of the Governments of Austria, Norway, Sweden and the European Union, and other partner organizations, including UN Women, the World Bank and the International Institute for Environment and Development, PEA will support full-fledged country projects in eight least developed countries and technical assistance in an additional 10 countries. More >


Our Stories

Making Malawi' fisheries and forestry policies community friendly

PEI supported the Government of Malawi in undertaking local consultations and outreach works during the revision of the sector policies for fisheries and aquaculture as well as forestry to ensure that these new policies include mechanisms for community benefit sharing and community based natural resource management. more 

Integration of environmental sustainability and budgets results enhanced access to energy efficient technologies and clean water

An environment and climate budget and planning checklist developed with the PEI support in 2011 has since been updated and used by sector and line ministries in the annual budget and planning process – all 14 sectors and 30 districts in the country according to the recent assessment. more 

Managing investment through a poverty and environment lens

PEI Lao PDR is working closely with the Government to improve the quality of planning, promotion and management of investments in extractive industries, by integrating the poverty and environment issues into investment decisions. more 

Addressing human-wildlife conflict in rural Bhutan

PEI Bhutan has been supporting rural communities in Bhutan to adopt innovative localized measures to protect crops from wild animals. more 

Promoting investment in sustainable fisheries in Tanzania

PEI Tanzania has been working to reduce overfishing and ecosystem degradation and improve livelihoods in Lake Victoria region by facilitating the institutionalization of sustainable fishing practices in Bunda district. more 

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