February 28, 2011

UNEP Governing Council Concludes with Support for Green Economy, Environmental Governance Reform

Filed under: Chemicals & Waste, climate, UN System — inece @ 7:18 pm

From the UNEP Press Release:

A major sustainable development conference in Brazil next year offers a key opportunity to accelerate and to scale-up a global transition to a low-carbon, resource-efficient Green Economy, a meeting of the world’s environment ministers has signaled.

Potential challenges, including new kinds of trade barriers, need to be managed. But a Green Economy offers a way of realizing sustainable development in the 21st century by “building economies, enhancing social equity and human well-being, while reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities”.

Ministers called on the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) to support countries keen to operationalize such a transition and to play a key and ‘active’ role in putting the challenges, opportunities and strategies towards a Green Economy firmly on the agenda for next year’s landmark meeting.

The UN Conference on Sustainable Development 2012, or Rio+20, also needs to address how the world can better manage and govern the environment including by evolving and strengthening the institutions responsible.

The ministers responsible for the environment, who have been meeting this week at UNEP headquarters, expressed concern that the overall efforts of the United Nations and nations in respect to the ‘environmental pillar’ of sustainable development remained weak, underfunded and fractured.

In their summary of discussions, released today at the close, many delegates said countries needed to move beyond pinpointing shortcomings and to focus on a real reform agenda in the run up to Rio+20.

For more information, see  the full list of decisions, the Chair’s summary, and other related documents at http://www.unep.org/gc/gc26/; IISD’s coverage of the event at http://www.iisd.ca/unepgc/26unepgc/; and the UNEP Green Economy  site at http://www.unep.org/greeneconomy.

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