State failure and civil war in developing countries represent some of the greatest risks to global peace and security. Since the end of the Cold War, at least eighteen violent conflicts have been driven by the exploitation of natural resources. While political and military issues remain critical, conceptions of security and conflict have broadened, with environmental degradation now seen as a significant contributing factor to conflict. In this changing security landscape, a radical shift in the way the UN engages in conflict prevention, post-conflict reconstruction, and peacebuilding is required. Indeed, recognizing that environmental and natural resources can be a contributing factor to violent conflict only highlights their potential significance as tools for cooperation and confidence-building in war-torn societies. Consequently, this United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report aims to summarize current knowledge on the links between environment, conflict and peacebuilding through thirteen field-based case studies. Based on its analysis, UNEP’s report draws three key conclusions for future UN peacemaking and peacebuilding operations: - Natural resources and the environment can be involved in all phases of the conflict cycle: from contributing to the outbreak and perpetuation of conflict and to spoiling the prospects for peace. The way that natural resources and the environment are governed has a determining influence on peace and security. - Consequently, it is clear that investing in environmental management and the governance of natural resources is an investment in conflict prevention. - Moreover, cooperation over the management of natural resources and the environment provide new opportunities for peacebuilding that should be pursued.
Format: Digital (Free) (ill.)
ISBN (or other code): 978-92-807-2957-3