Rio +20 UN Conference

The UN conference which took place at Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, popularly called Rio+ 20 was a very enriching experience for MMS delegates Molly Vadaken and Celine P who  participated in the event.

20 years after the 1992 Earth Summit,100+ world leaders and more than12,000 individuals were reported to have registered to attend the official Rio+20 event  and another 30,000 participated in one or more of the up to 3000 unofficial parallel events and 500 events organized by governments that took place throughout Rio de Janeiro. Besides at the peoples’ summit held in Flamingo Park (same venue as of 1992) several thousand activists, local and indigenous people and religious gathered to educate, protest and encourage one another for a  just and sustainable future.

Several initiatives/commitments were taken by individuals, civil society and universities. The “Future Earth” initiative, a research-based collaboration between several UN agencies and others was one among them.

Molly shares her experience at Rio

It was a learning experience by meeting many people and NGOS from all over the world. I was happy to meet many NGOS from India and there are many things we can learn from each other.

Civil society groups are upset that the Rio declaration is extremely weak. It conveys no sense of urgency, nor does it clearly spell out global action in terms of life style, consumption and production patterns. According to them the rich countries need to set an example in this regard by reducing consumption and production.

Some were satisfied with the compromised final outcome document the “Future We Want”  while many civil societies especially the women’s major group and youth  had complaints .The inclusion of the right to food and water in the  document was highly appreciated as many of us lobbied for it in the past several months.

A path to a green economy and sustainable development can only be achieved by the collective action of all. Each and every one is responsible to choose a life style which will promote a better life for all on the planet EARTH

Sr.Molly Vadakken

In short, Rio+20 generated ample energy among the people though the governments were not ready to commit.

About  Rio 2012

The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) will take place in Brazil in 2012, marking the 20th anniversary of the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), in Rio de Janeiro, and the 10th anniversary of the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) in Johannesburg.

The core themes Rio2012 will focus on are a Green Economy and the institutional framework for sustainable development.

Rio 2012 is humanity’s chance to commit to a transition to a green economy, to lift people out of poverty.  We cannot wait another 20 years. The time to commit is at Rio 2012,” said Sha Zukang, who is also the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs.

The first preparatory meeting of the Conference on Sustainable Development saw lively debate and interactive exchanges between UN Member States, UN agencies and Major Groups on their understanding of what a “green economy” means in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication.

The objective of the 2012 Conference is “to secure renewed political commitment for sustainable development, assessing the progress to date and the remaining gaps in the implementation of the outcomes of the major summits on sustainable development and addressing new and emerging challenges”.

The UN is organizing the World Summit on Sustainable Development in 2012 also in Rio, to Commemorate the 20th anniversary of the 1992 conference called Rio + 20.  The first meeting of the Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) for the 2012 UN Conference on Sustainable Development, took place at the UN Headquarters in New York from 17 – 19 May 2010.