ECOLEX – the gateway to environmental law

ECOLEX is a database providing the most comprehensive, global source of information on environmental law. ECOLEX is operated jointly by FAO, IUCN and UNEP. 


By Anni Lukacs, IUCN

ECOLEX combines the environmental law information holdings of the three partner organizations FAO, IUCN and UNEP. It contains comprehensive bibliographic and analytical information as well as full text links to more than 2 100 multilateral and bilateral agreements, 79 000 on national legislation, 520 court decisions and 31 000 records on literature on law and policy.

Searching ECOLEX is easy. The portal offers a user-friendly Google-kind feature by which the user can find information in all or selected datasets. For the more advanced user ECOLEX includes specially tailored search forms for each of the datasets.

ECOLEX covers all aspects of environmental and natural resources conservation, including subjects such as fresh and marine water, air and atmosphere, soil and land use, species and ecosystems, fisheries and forestry, hazardous substances and waste, as well as food and agriculture.

All information has been analyzed and indexed in a standardized way, descriptors such as country name, territory, region, keywords etc. were harmonized.

The global access free of charge and the trilingual user interface of ECOLEX attract users in countries speaking English, French and Spanish and especially those in developing countries and countries with economies in transition.

Please visit ECOLEX at

For more information, contact Anni Lukacs,

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