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UNEP year book 2013: emerging issues in our global environment

Rapid change in the Arctic resulting from climate change is threatening ecosystems and providing new extraction opportunities including easier access to oil, gas and minerals. The UNEP Year Book 2013 shows that changes in the Arctic will have consequences far beyond this fragile region and that they require an urgent international response. It also reports on the spike in rhino and elephant poaching in Africa, growing urban environmental challenges and the accelerating momentum to tackle short-lived climate pollutants. The report highlights that the volume of chemicals in the world continues to grow, with a shift in production from developed to developing countries. To meet the goal of producing and using chemicals in ways that minimise significant impacts on health and the environment by 2020, there need to be reinforced efforts to reduce the use of toxic chemicals, promote safer alternatives and build capacity for sound chemicals management.