Information and communications plays a vital role not only in formulating environmental management policies but also in the decision making process aiming at environmental protection and improvement of environment for sustaining good quality of life for the living beings. Hence, management of environment is key component and thus plays an important role in effecting a balance between the demands and resources available for keeping the environmental quality at a satisfactory level.
Realizing such need Ministry set up an Environmental Information System (ENVIS) in 1983 as a plan programme as a comprehensive network in environmental information collection, collation, storage, retrieval and dissemination to varying users, which include decision-makers, researchers, academicians, policy planners and research scientists, etc.
ENVIS was conceived as a distributed information network with the subject-specific centers to carry out the mandates and to provide the relevant and timely information to all concerned. Further, association of the various State Governments/UTs was also felt necessary in promoting the ENVIS network to cover a wide range of subjects. The subject area for States/UTs ENVIS Centers was the status of environment and related issues. Thus, the network was expanded gradually with the involvement of thematic subject-areas and State Government/UT departments to make it a more comprehensive environmental information network.
ENVIS network at present consists of a chain of 69 network partners out of which 40 are on subject-specific and 29 on State/UT related issues. These network partners are called ENVIS Centers and are located in the notable organizations/institutions/State/UT Government Departments/Universities throughout the country. The focal point of ENVIS is located in the Ministry and assists the Environment Information (EI) Division in coordinating the activities of all the ENVIS network partners by making ENVIS a web-enabled comprehensive information system.
Objectives of ENVIS Centers
- To build up a repository and dissemination centre in Environmental Science and Engineering.
- To gear up the modern technologies of acquisition, processing, storage, retrieval and dissemination of information of environmental nature.
- To support and promote research, development and innovation in environmental information technology.
- To provide national environmental information service relevant to present needs and capable of development to meet the future needs of the users, originators, processors and disseminators of information.
- To build up storage, retrieval and dissemination capabilities with the ultimate objectives of disseminating information speedily to the users.
- To promote, national and international cooperation and liaison for exchange of environment related information.
- To promote, support and assist education and personnel training programmes designed to enhance environmental information processing and utilization capabilities.
- To promote exchange of information amongst developing countries.
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