Conservation network official elected as chief of UN environment agency
A German national who was recommended to the Assembly by Secretary-General Kofi Annan, Mr. Steiner is expected to begin his four-year term on 15 April, following the two-term tenure of Klaus Toepfer.
Mr. Steiner is the Director-General of the World Conservation Union (IUCN) which has over 1,000 members that include States, government agencies, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in 140 countries.
“He has worked both at grassroots level and at the highest levels of international policy-making to address the connections between environmental sustainability, social equity, and economic development,” a UN spokesman said yesterday in announcing Mr. Steiner’s nomination by the Secretary-General.
Prior to his assumption of the directorship of the Conservation Union in 2001, Mr. Steiner served as head of the World Commission on Dams, the chief technical advisor of a programme for sustainable management of Mekong River watersheds and as Senior Policy Advisor of IUCN’s Global Policy Unit, where he developed partnerships between the environmental community, the World Bank and the UN system.