The UNEP Year Book 2008 (formerly the GEO Year Book) is the fifth annual report on the changing environment produced by the United Nations Environment Programme in collaboration with many world environmental experts. The UNEP Year Book 2008 highlights the increasing complexity and interconnections of climate change, ecosystem integrity, human well-being, and economic development. It examines the emergence and influence of economic mechanisms and market driven approaches for addressing environmental degradation, and it describes recent research findings and policy decisions that affect our awareness of and response to changes in our global climate and environment. In three chapters, the UNEP Year Book 2008 brings the spotlight on new and recent events, developments and scientific findings in environment: The Global Overview surveys the significant environmental events that gained prominence during 2007. Using graphs, charts, and photos with examples from regional experiences, the overview tracks the year’s developments on the environmental front. The Feature Focus documents some of the creative efforts already working in markets and financial circles to fight the growing climate crisis. The section also analyses the patterns that are emerging after at least a decade of carbon market experimentation and attempts to map the next important steps that will witness a transition to an environmentally-sound economy. The Emerging Challenges examines new and recent scientific findings on the role of arctic climate feedbacks in climate change. Release of methane from thawing permafrost and methane hydrates in sub-sea deposits are resulting in an amplification of warming and emphasizes the urgent need for increased investments in climate and energy research, knowledge partnerships, and global political responses to ultimately reverse these trends.