Global Environmental Vocabulary Being Developed

Worldwide environmental agencies are collaborating to develop a multilingual global environmental thesaurus for easier information exchange.

The countries of the world will soon be able to speak one language where the environment is concerned.

EPA, the European Environment Agency (EEA) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) are collaborating to develop a multilingual global environmental thesaurus in an effort to break down the linguistic barriers to environmental information exchange.

Italy's research council, the Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), will be associated with the project.

A plan for this global thesaurus is expected by September 2000.

The dividends would include streamlining environmental information systems, Internet Web sites, databases and other electronic resources.

EPA said such a resource would be highly beneficial in information searches, content cataloging and information system design and is expected to be invaluable to librarians, researchers, translators, policy developers and the public.

Included in the new thesaurus would be terms from the EPA Terminology Reference System, the EEA Generalized Multilingual Environmental Thesaurus (GEMET) and the UNEP En Voc thesauri, and additional thesauri from other systems around the world.

It would be accessible on the Internet, CDs and in print.

The existing terminology systems are in 12 languages and the expectation is to have the global thesaurus in many more languages.

The EPA Terminology Reference System is available online at: www.epa.gov/trs

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