Following USCIB’s nomination, Dr. Neil C. Hawkins, corporate vice president for sustainability at The Dow Chemical Company, has been named to serve as the first business and industry representative to the United Nations Environment Programme’s (UNEP) newly created Global Environment Outlook (GEO) High Level Advisory Group.
The Global Environment Outlook (GEO) is an international consultative scientific and expert process that conducts integrated environmental assessments and reports on the state, trends and outlooks of the environment. GEO reports present an annual “all of planet” integrated assessment of ecosystems by scientists and environmental experts; its purpose is to inform policymakers and help set priorities for international cooperation on environmental challenges.
The upcoming GEO-6, to be launched in mid-2017, will build upon regional assessment processes and create a comprehensive picture of the environmental factors contributing to human well-being, accompanied by an analysis of policies leading to greater attainment of global environmental objectives and goals, including the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)s. The assessment will lay the foundation for continued socio-environmental assessments across relevant scales, with a thematic as well as an integrated focus, enabling and informing societal transitions and the tracking of SDG targets and goals as well as previously agreed internationally environmental goals. The enhanced policy analysis in GEO-6 will be aimed at assisting member states to position themselves on the most effective pathways for transitions towards a sustainable future. The GEO will bring together representatives from the U.S. and other national governments with experts representing a broad range of stakeholder constituencies.
Dr. Hawkins is the only business representative with a seat on this policy-driving panel.
“We’re thrilled to support Neil in this role on behalf of business writ large,” said Norine Kennedy, USCIB’s vice president for strategic international engagement, energy and environment. “His involvement in the GEO assessment process will contribute to a more multi-dimensional assessment of planetary eco-systems and human impacts from a business perspective, and shed light on how the private sector can help deploy innovative solutions.”
In his global role as corporate vice president of sustainability at Dow, Hawkins drives strategy and implementation for Dow’s sustainability programs, including the enterprise-wide 2015 Sustainability Goals. He is a recognized practitioner and thought leader on sustainability in the international business community.
Hawkins’s nomination to UNEP’s GEO6 High Level Advisory Group is the most recent development in USCIB’s engagement with UNEP and its UN Environment Assembly in Nairobi, as well as USCIB’s inputs to previous GEO reports.
For more information on UNEP GEO, please see