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Indicator-based Environmental Reporting

Indicator-based Environmental Reporting

Indicators are becoming ever more relevant for environmental reporting, both at the national and at the international level. This project developed recommendations for the focussed and concise communication of environmental information using key indicators and highly aggregated indices. A summary report is now available for download.

In Germany, both the environment barometer and the German Environment Index (DUX) are not being maintained, owing to a diversity of reasons. The core indicator system (KIS), developed by the Federal Environment Agency for the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety is currently under revision to match new political requirements. At the same time, the European Commission is developing a comprehensive environmental pressure index.

In order to provide information to all interested parties, including policy makers, scientists, businesses, and the general public, the German Federal Environment Agency (Umweltbundesamt) is tasked with producing appropriate, reliable instruments that can quickly convey relevant information.

Various target groups, however, have different background knowledge and expect different levels of detail from the information provided. At the same time, there exists a trade-off between the amount of information and the communicative effectiveness of the instrument. Therefore, the current challenge is to strike a fitting balance between information and ease of communication.

On 7 and 8 September 2011, policy makers and practitioners of environmental information met at Ecologic Institute to discuss the main findings, in particular the following issues:

  • How to reform the current Core Indicator System (KIS)?
  • Whether to develop a highly aggregated index or a set of key indicators for the highest level in the environment communication pyramid?

A summary report [pdf, 190 KB, German/English] in German and English is available for download.

The project was managed by Ecologic Institute with Bosch & Partner providing support with regard to the core indicator system (KIS). The workshop management and facilitation was coordinated by Ecologic Institute’s conference team.

January 2011 to June 2011
Project ID
indicator, environmental reporting, German environmental index, core indicator set, environmental pressure index, key indicator, Europe, Germany