Country Profiles

Estonian National Commission on Sustainable Development (c/o Ministry of the Environment)



Name: Mr. Mart Loite

Position: Member of the Council’s Secretariat

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Phone: +372 6 935622


Ministry of the Environment

Narva mnt 7a

15172 Tallinn, Estonia


Mission Statement

The objectives of the Commission were to advise the Government on issues related to SD, develop different sectoral options and comments, present them to the national and local governments, and submit proposals for new legislation. It provided a forum for stakeholder involvement and was most instrumental in the preparation of the NSDS.

Public participation mechanisms have changed substantially due to the reform of the mandate and functions of the NCSD. The reformed NCSD continues to hold regularly meetings on crucial SD topics and forwards the result of these participatory discussions to the government. It also organises various events like SD conferences and ad-hoc events in crucial SD issues. In all these participation mechanisms the role of the NCSD is to increase ownership and serve as an information exchange platform for stakeholders. The Commission’s focal topics for the next two years are the development of human resource and energy efficiency.

Composition and Membership

The Estonian Commission on Sustainable Development was established in 1996 and reformed in 2009 by Regulation.

According to 2009 regulation, Members of the SD Commission are to be NGO representatives only. Previously, the Commission was led by the Prime Minister and co-chaired by the Minister of Economy and the Minister of Environment, and comprised 28 experts including representatives from government (6), parliament (5), governmental institutions (5), academia (9), business (1) and NGOs (2).

The Strategy Office in the State Chancellery acts as the secretariat of the Sustainable Development Commission and provides a link to the government sector and to the Europe 2020 process (as the Strategy Office is also the national coordinator of the Europe 2020 process in Estonia).

Role and Functions

  • advising on government policy or making policy recommendations, including NSDS; and
  • stakeholder engagement.

Recent Activities

The Commission, in its former roel, supervised the development of the Estonian National Strategy on Sustainable Development – „Sustainable Estonia 21“, which was approved by the Estonian Parliament (Riigikogu) in September 2005. Sustainable Estonia 21 is an integral conception which is clearly focused on sustainability of long-term development of the Estonian state and society until the year 2030. The general development goal of the country is to integrate the requirement to be successful in global competition with a sustainable development model and preservation of the traditional values of Estonia.