Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS)

HQ: Geneva, Switzerland

Focal Point: Susan Bolvenkel-Prior

Key figures: Greenhouse gas emissions

Key Figures: Waste


Executive Director’s message

“Addressing climate change is a priority for UNAIDS not only in the way we operate but also in increasing our understanding of the implications climate change has on the AIDS epidemic and our response to it. Just as the AIDS response requires all partners from governments to civil society and the private sector to work together – so must we work together to reach goals in addressing climate change.”

Michel Sidibé, Executive Director, Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/(UNAIDS)


The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) leads and inspires the world to achieve its shared vision of zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths. UNAIDS unites the efforts of 11 UN organizations—UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP, UNDP, UNFPA, UNODC, UN Women, ILO, UNESCO, WHO and the World Bank—and works closely with global and national partners towards ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030.

Experience so far

UNAIDS Secretariat has successfully collected data from 86 offices for its 2015 inventory. This is the Secretariat’s 7th annual inventory submission.

Reduction efforts

The UNAIDS Secretariat adopted its second Emissions Reduction Strategy in 2016. The focus of the strategy is to sensitize staff to the consequences of both business and personal decisions on the environment and sustainability.

Reduction achievements

Between 2010 and 2013 the UNAIDS Secretariat achieved a 14% reduction in GHG emissions related to its travel and facilities operations.  The Secretariat has offset the remaining GHG emissions for the years 2012, 2013 and 2014, thereby becoming “climate neutral” for operations for those years.


The UNAIDS Secretariat includes all travel by UNAIDS staff and meeting participants and facilities operations.


Secretariat has offset its emissions for 2012 – 2014, and will be purchasing 5,047 tons of offsets which represents 100% of the Secretariat’s 2015 emissions (all unavoidable emissions associated with travel and facilities operations for all UNAIDS country offices and HQ). The Secretariat purchases Adaptation Fund Certified Emissions Reduction credits via the Secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Waste management

The Secretariat measures waste produced in HQ Geneva. These figures are produced by the waste contractor. Waste reduction and staff sensitization to the subject is a target for 2016/2017.

Next steps

The UNAIDS Sustainability Task Force, which is comprised of representatives from all departments and the Staff Association, will work on finding ways to implement the UNAIDS Secretariat Emissions Reduction Strategy goal of sensitizing staff to environmental and sustainability issues. Looking towards 2017, UNAIDS will be looking at ways to promote staff involvement in the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development.

UNAIDS case studies