One year on since historic United Nations Animal Welfare Resolution


Press release

Sustainable Development

March 2nd, 2023 – The World Federation for Animals (WFA), representing 48 global animal protection organisations, has published a report one year on from the historic United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA), where Member States passed the first-ever resolution with explicit reference to animal welfare.

The Animal Welfare – Environment – Sustainable Development Nexus recognised that animal welfare can contribute to addressing environmental challenges, promoting the One Health approach, and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is expected to explore these links in a report that draws on the expertise of other stakeholders. 

Unveiling the Nexus

The latest WFA report, “Unveiling the Nexus: The Interdependence of Animal Welfare, Environment & Sustainable Development” is being shared to help policymakers, provide a synthesis of scientific evidence, and stimulate public and open dialogue among stakeholders. It highlights the value of an animal welfare perspective to help tackle the planetary crises and accelerate sustainable development. 

There is a critical scientific evidence base demonstrating how improving animal welfare can help people and the environment, including reversing biodiversity loss, mitigating climate change, and ensuring public health. This report is aimed to help decision-makers understand those connections, so they can make sustainable and effective decisions to reverse our current crises.” said Dr James Yeates, WFA’s CEO

We hope that by Unveiling the Nexus, we can help others see the potential for animal welfare as a cross-cutting lever for sustainable development. The facts are there. It is time to implement the solutions the Nexus lays out and enable a generational shift in international policy to protect the people, the planet, and the animals.” said Britta Riis, WFA’s President



  • The United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) brings together representatives of the 194 Member States of the UN, businesses, civil society, and other stakeholders to agree on policies to address the world’s most pressing environmental challenges. Its resumed Fifth Session (UNEA-5) took place online and in Nairobi between 28th February and 2nd March 2022. The Sixth Session will be held from 26th February to 1st March 2024, in Nairobi at the headquarters of the United Nations Environment Programme.
  • Full text for UNEP/EA.5/Res.1 resolution: Animal Welfare – Environment – Sustainable Development Nexus. The report by UNEP as requested in the resolution is expected to: explore how animal welfare can help address environmental challenges, promote One Health, and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals; consider all animals’ welfare: wild and domesticated; and, refer to the substantial body of science supporting animal welfare, as recognised in the resolution, including animal sentience.
  • World Federation for Animals “Unveiling the Nexus: The Interdependence of Animal Welfare, Environment & Sustainable Development” Report. The World Federation for Animals is a membership organisation founded in 2020 by and for national, regional, and international animal protection organisations. WFA is the result of these organisations’ decision to join forces and work together towards a broad representation of the interests of animals in international policy.
Written by

Silvia Mantilla

Silvia, Communications Manager at the World Federation for Animals, coordinates the implementation of WFAs’s communication strategy.

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