At the Aarhus conference in June 1998, UNEP and the Ministry of Environment of Georgia have signed a letter of agreement establishing a UNEP-GRID environmental information network centre for Georgia -- GRID Tbilisi.
Initial funding for the setting up of the centre was provided by UNEP and the World Bank but GRID-Tbilisi is expected to fully fund its activities through market-oriented projects when it is fully operational by the year 2000.
GRID-Tbilisi is the 16th node of the UNEP-GRID network. It is located within the Georgian Ministry of Environment and its staff includes 6 full-time professional geographers, cartographers, and information scientists. The main objective of the centre will be to disseminate environmental information using modern information technologies such as geographic information systems (GIS), remote sensing, and the Internet.
GRID-Tbilisi has already produced a State of the Environment (SoE) report for Georgia for the Internet, maps and graphics for National Environmental Action Plan (NEAP) and it has providde Internet training support to the Aral Sea countries.
Other outputs under preparation include:
an electronic SoE report of the city of Tbilisi
an electronic SoE report of the Transcaucasus region
a internet-based environmental information network for the Black Sea