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First PrepCom for the World Summit on Sustainable Development
30 April-2 May, New York  
                                                          >>Version française: BNT<<

April 30 - May 02
CSD 10 
  monday 30 : tuesday 01 : summary :

 


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Highlights from Monday, 30 April

 


Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affaris Nitin Desai with PrepCom Chair Elim Salim (Indonesia)

The tenth session of the Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD-10), acting as the preparatory committee (PrepCom) for the World Summit on Sustainable Development, opened today at UN Headquarters in New York. In the morning session, delegates elected members of the Bureau and considered the agenda and organizational matters. They also heard reports regarding progress toward the World Summit on Sustainable Development and comments on the process for setting the agenda and determining possible main themes for the Summit, which continued during the afternoon session. The Secretariat presented the draft rules of procedure for the Summit.

Outgoing CSD Chair Bedrich Moldan gives incoming Chair Elim Salim his chair at the dias
 

CSD-9 Summary

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JoAnne DiSano, Director, Division for Sustainable Development, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affaris Nitin Desai, PrepCom Chair Elim Salim and Alexander de Barros, Secretariat

 


In his opening statement, PrepCom Chair Emil Salim (Indonesia) reviewed the main concerns over sustainable development, specifically that environmental issues are not yet mainstreamed within development. He called for the need to chart a collaborative course for sustainable development to avoid crashing "spaceship earth" into an environmental disaster.


Introducing the Secretary-General's reports,
Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Nitin Desai: highlighted his assessment of the emerging CSD-9 that require consideration at the Johannesburg Summit; called for a global ethic related to sustainable development; presented the planned Summit activities; and presented some useful resources for the Summit preparations, including a Website and list server.


Election of the Bureau Ahmed Ihab Gamaleldin (Egypt) and Ositadinma Anaedu (Nigeria) for Africa; Kiyo Akasaka (Japan) for Asia; Jan Kara (Czech Republic) and Alexandru Niculescu (Romania) for Eastern European states; and Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti (Brazil) and Diane Marie Quarless (Jamaica) for Latin America. The region of Western Europe and other States presented four candidates (Canada, Germany, Sweden and Switzerland) for two seats on the bureau. Richard Ballhorn (Canada) and Mr. Lars-Göran Engfeldt (Sweden) were elected by secret ballot.

Delegates cast secret ballots in order to vote for WEOG bureau members as there were four nominations (Canada, Germany, Sweden, and Switzerland) for two positions. Canada (right) awaits the results of the vote. Richard Ballhorn is on the far right.

After the secret ballots were collected, Chair read out the results of the votes, and announced that Canada and Sweden would be on the Bureau
Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti (Brazil) with her delegation and being congratulated by Chile

Kiyo Akasaka (Japan) and Diane Marie Quarless (Jamaica)

Bureau members

Jan Kara (Czech Republic), Lars-Göran Engfeldt (Sweden) and Emil Salim (Indonesia)

Kiyo Akasaka (Japan) and Ahmed Ihab Gamaleldin (Egypt) and Ositadinma Anaedu (Nigeria) for Africa

Presentations by major groups of their preparatory activities for and expected contributions to the preparatory process


On behalf of the youth caucus, the United Nations Association of Canada recommended: recognition of the link between poverty, over consumption and the environment; attendance by trade and finance ministers; consideration of the unsustainable Western lifestyle; and integration of sustainability into the education of economists and engineers.

Speaking for the indigenous peoples' caucus, the International Indian Treaty Council (above right) urged Member States and the Secretariat to ensure broad input from Indigenous Peoples in the preparatory sessions and highlighted the link between cultural and biological diversity.

On behalf of business and industry, the International Chamber of Commerce emphasized innovation, investment, integration and implementation of policies, and called for a greater awareness of responsibility.

The Women's Environment and Development Organization (WEDO) described women's preliminary review activities on Agenda 21 that will culminate with a launch in Johannesburg of a Women's Agenda for Earth Summit 2002 and urged for priority consideration to be given to crosscutting issues and linkages and for that the location of meetings be determined from a thematic, not stakeholder, basis.

On behalf of farmers, the International Federation of Agricultural Producers identified three main issues to be the focus of the Summit agenda: food security, rural development, and sustainable livelihoods. He also supported concentrating on poverty reduction and the need to build capacity for participatory development and to strengthen social capital, including the integration of a variety of modalities of participation in the Summit.

Emphasizing the relationship between disempowerment and environmental degradation, the South African NGO Host Committee said the 2002 Summit should reframe global environmental issues in terms of, inter alia, poverty

On behalf of local authorities, the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) said the future success and credibility of sustainable development depends on articulation and endorsement at the Summit of local strategies.

Speaking for the scientific and technological community, the International Scientific Union pointed out the need for: strengthened scientific and technological capacity in developing countries; full and open exchange of scientific and technical data; and strengthened ethics and responsibility of science.

Speaking for trade unions, the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU) urged governments to ensure a proper mix of major group representatives in their delegations, and suggested themes for the Summit such as, inter alia, poverty, employment, food security, and public health.

General Discussion on Agenda Items 3 (Progress in preparatory activities for the World Summit on Sustainable Development) and 6 (Process for setting the agenda and determining possible main themes for the Summit)
UNEP Executive Director Klaus Töpfer said that the "Rio spirit of action" had faded away and that a new spirit is required for 2002. He identified the following changes since Rio: the increasing role of globalization and trade; the growth in the knowledge society incorporating information technology and the new revolution in biology; the changing expectations of civil society regarding the summit; and the increasing importance of FDI. He noted UNEP's contribution regarding: finalizing a review of Agenda 21 by May 2002; the completion of the third Global Environmental Outlook (GEO-3); the linkage with regional development banks and the UN regional economic commissions; and activities for improving international environmental governance.

Iran, on behalf of the G-77/China, underlined UN General Assembly resolution 59/199 and emphasized that, inter alia: the PrepCom decides the Summit agenda; CSD-10 should include a draft decision on the linkages between IEG and the Summit preparatory processes; the review process be based on a genuine bottom-up approach; Agenda 21 is not up for renegotiation; and that commitments on technology transfer, capacity building and financial resources should be fully implemented.

Sweden, for the EU, emphasized, inter alia, the need for: a comprehensive review that subsequently addresses challenges that have arisen since Rio; mobilizing interest at the highest levels of government; operationalizing sustainable development at different levels; examining the possibility of a "new deal"; and supporting regional intergovernmental preparatory meetings.


China noted their ongoing national assessment of sustainable development and called for poverty eradication, technology transfer and capacity building.


Canada suggested engaging civil society to address health & environment; conservation and stewardship; international environmental governance; sustainable communities; and innovation and partnership in order to bring sustainable development within reach of the world's poor.


Highlighting the importance of the Barbados Programme of Action, Samoa, for the Alliance of Small Island States, underlined the need to build the capacity of institutions, governments and community based organizations. Emphasizing the importance of not going back on the terms negotiated for Agenda 21, he said parties should nevertheless be prepared to consider new ideas for the next decade.
Noting that the Summit is a political process, not a diplomatic negotiation or a technical seminar, Brazil said the Summit should make a clear assessment of the successes and failures in implementing Agenda 21.
Egypt said resolution 55/199 should provide the sole basis of work, and proposed that the UN prepare reports on three facets of Agenda 21 implementation to evaluate successes and challenges: trends at the national level; evaluation of UN system assistance; and contributions of major groups. He suggested undertaking the regional preparatory committees before setting the Summit themes and priorities.

 

On possible outcomes from the Summit, Iceland cautioned against producing more long texts on "pet subjects," instead calling for focus on the themes of fighting poverty, decoupling economic growth and environmental damage through resource efficiency, and maintaining the functional integrity of ecosystems.

Bolivia said the Agenda 21 review process should: establish a bottom-up process that is open to full developing country participation and is based on UN principles; and, inter alia, consider the themes of globalization, financial resources, instruments of Agenda 21 implementation and mountainous ecosystems.

Switzerland stated that economic, technological and social changes for sustainable development are only possible through mobilization of all actors in a strong political alliance, but pointed out that resistance may occur if it causes significant discomfort in people's lives.

The Russian Federation outlined national actions toward the 2002 Summit.


Mauritania noted that the success of the Summit depends on developing country input to the preparatory process

Draft Rules of Procedure for the Summit

Presenting the proposed rules (E/CN.17/2001/PC/24), Director of the Division for Economic and Social Affairs Joanne DiSano drew attention to the GA resolution mandating the PrepCom to decide on the rules of major group participation for the Summit. She noted that the provisional rules need approval by the GA on the recommendation of the PrepCom, and recommended that the draft rules of procedure be considered by this PrepCom with a view to submitting them to the 56th session of the GA. She suggested that delegates consider following rule 31 of the GA on the election of a President and Vice-Presidents. Discussion of this agenda item was deferred until Tuesday morning.

Miscellaneous Photos
Kimo Goree, ENB Managing Editor, with Rhonda Piggott, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Australia (left) and Barbara Briglia Tavora, Brazil (right)
Waiting in line for documents
Belgium reads the CSD-9 Summary Report, while Bureau members from Egypt and Nigeria discuss the Agenda Items
 
Andorra and Malaysia

Side Event: Towards a Common Vision: Exploring Links Between the World Summit on Sustainable Development and Financing for Development
Organized by the International Institute of Environment and Development (IIED)
Chaired by Nigel Cross, Executive Director (left), the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), this side event addressed the potential linkages between the World Summit for Sustainable Development and the Financing for Development conferences. Ashok Khosla, Development Alternatives, India, notes that although finance is at the root of all discourse on environment and social development, events at Seattle and Prague illustrate that civil society has agency with which to force changes in pace. He recognized that massive amounts of resources flow from the south to the north (through debt repayments, primary resource transport, low-cost manufacturing, etc.) and that in this light, the poor are supporting the rich; a perspective which contains the kernal of revaluing the role of the south in global economic development. Desighan Naidoo, Head Environmental Planning, Ministry of Environmental Affairs and Tourism, South Africa (right), described South Africa as a country of dichotomy, of enduring
Desighan Naidoo, Ministry of Environmental Affairs and Tourism, South Africa
inequality, sharply dual economies, yet the most developed country in the southern African region. His revisionist thinking conveyed a need for an African renaissance with core themes of : investing in Africa's people (peace, stability, governance systems); development of financial mechanisms to support growth and resource mobilization; strategic resource management (minerals, agriculture, biodiversity); and focussed industries (manufacturing, tourism). He hoped that the 2002 summit would help to form functional north-south, and south-south relationships, increase literacy in international environmental and financial discourse, and empower Africa to see itself through new eyes, recognizing that Africa and all developing countries are not as disadvantaged as is commonly believed. Mauricio Escanero, Financing for Development Conference, Mexico (center), noted that the new process will not only deal with ODA but has an integrated agenda including mobilizing private capital flows, trade, debt and systemic issues. The challenge is finding synergies by seeing development from the point of view of finance, and building political linkages to make old methods more participatory.

Side Event: The Treaty Initiative to Share the Genetic Commons

This initiative aims to establish the Earth's gene pool, in all of its biological forms and manifestations, as a global commons to be jointly shared by all peoples. Sponsors are calling for the adoption by governments and civil society at the World Summit for Sustainable Development. For more information, contact: treaty@foet.org

Jeremy Rifkin, Foundation on Economic Trends (FOET)

 

 

 

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