Tools Overview

A key function of Greening the Blue is sharing best practices, tools and guidance for Focal Points (a designated person in each UN entity who has been appointed to coordinate the sustainability management process throughout their respective entity and to keep methodologies and measures up-to-date and harmonized with the other UN entities) to use in their entities and for any other interested person or entity who may find the resources to be useful.

Since the UN’s journey towards climate neutrality and environmental sustainability began in 2007, UNEP, SUN, and the IMG members have collaboratively produced a variety of resources that help guide the UN System and entities in achieving their environmental commitments. 

Publications and Resources include topics such as:

  • Environmental Management Systems (EMS)
  • Events and Meetings
  • Facilities
  • Staff Awareness
  • Sustainable Procurement
  • Travel

Environmental Management Systems (EMS)

The EMS Toolkit

This application was developed to support UN entities, funds and programmes in their endeavours to implement environmental management systems (EMS).

Events and Meetings

Green Events Tool (GET)

The Green Events Tool (GET) is an integrated web-based assessment platform conceived and designed to evaluate the sustainability and environmental performance of events. It is developed, hosted and maintained by United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) secretariat and the Gulf Organisation for Research & Development (GORD). GET targets decarbonization and sustainable development by focusing on environmental impacts of conferences, meetings, exhibitions, trade fairs, sporting events. etc. From transportation and lodging to paper trails, catering and energy use, the GET provides an all-encompassing approach that identifies ways to host eco-friendly events with reduced carbon footprint and other impacts.

The tool is free to use for any interested stakeholder. The first version is only open to organizations.

ICAO Green Meetings Calculator

The ICAO Green Meetings Calculator (IGMC) is a tool designed to support decision-making in reducing the carbon emissions from air travel to attend meetings.

The software generates an optimal location for a meeting in terms of CO2 emissions, taking into consideration the city of origin and the number of participants, as well as other parameters. While many factors may affect the decision for where a meeting should be held, the calculator helps facilitate the planning process. The tool also allows to estimate air travel related carbon emissions for a specific meeting.

"Sustainable events guide: give your large event a small footprint"

Read about how to organize sustainable meetings.


"Important and Desirable Environmental Actions (IDEAs) for establishment of 'green' UN offices Report"

The IDEAs (Important and Desirable Environment Actions) guidance aims to assist UN country teams in selecting efficient and resilient office premises by defining key performance benchmarks across a range of environmental topics addressed by the UN's 2020-2030 Sustainability Strategy 1. These include greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, waste and water management, biodiversity or air pollution.

Staff awareness

Greening the Blue Tutorial

The Greening the Blue Tutorial is designed for UN personnel to provide training on environmental sustainability at the UN system. The Tutorial highlights the work that's underway across the UN system to improve its environmental performance and provides helpful advice on how each individual can contribute to that effort, by calculating and reducing their own work-related footprint.

The Tutorial takes the form of an animation in which we follow two UN personnel – Stick and Bean – as they discover their work-related environmental impact and ways to reduce it throughout a typical UN workday.

It is free for use by all UN personnel and external users.

Campaign Toolkits & Staff Engagement

A number of different environmental sustainability campaigns, such as “Beat the Plastic,” “Greening the office,” and “Say yes to less,” have been developed by Greening the Blue and within some UN entities over the years. If you are interested in running one of these campaigns or are looking for inspiration on what can be done to promote environmental sustainability and engage staff in your own entity, please feel free to make use of the campaign toolkits. Toolkits include materials such as posters, videos, e-mails, and website text.

Toolkit materials are free to use and adapt. Use of some materials require acknowledgment of who created them. Details of any requirements around use are provided on the materials.

If you would like to contribute materials to the Campaign Toolkit Database, please contact us 

Sustainable Procurement

"Buying for a better world: a guide for sustainable procurement in the UN" (2011)

To assist with the implementation of Sustainable Procurement (SP) the Guide aims to provide: Concrete and valid arguments for the UN to engage in SP, Recommendations on the development of a SP Action Plan and Guidance on the integration of sustainable development principles in the UN procurement cycle.

Sustainable procurement online training

The United Nations Development Programme offers specialized procurement training and certification to staff from the UN system, non-governmental organizations, international development financing institutions and their borrowers, and governments.


ICAO Carbon Emissions Calculator

The calculator allows passengers to estimate the emissions associated with their air travel. 

Additional Help

If are looking for more direct support on environmental sustainability, contact your entity’s Focal Point: Focal Point Contact List

Not part of the United Nations or don’t see a current Focal Point listed for your entity? Contact us