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The World Summit on Sustainable Development

, South Africa | 26 August - 4 September 2002


Highlights from Wednesday, 28 August 2002

Delegates to the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) convened in two Partnership Plenaries to address water and sanitation, and energy. The Vienna setting convened in morning and evening sessions to continue negotiations on outstanding paragraphs in the draft Plan of Implementation and to hear reports from informal consultations and the contact groups. The contact groups on means of implementation and institutional arrangements also continued their deliberations during the day and in evening sessions. Above photo: Youth participants to the WSSD held a dialogue on children's rights and its linkages to the Summit.

Photos above (L-R): Indigenous delegates in their traditional attire; view from the NGO lounge.

Daily Web Coverage

24/25 August 31 August
26 August 1 September
27 August 2 September
28 August 3 September
29 August 4 September
30 August Summary

Links to Resources


UN Official Summit website
 UN WSSD Live Website
 South African/JOWSCO website

Key documents
 Draft plan of implementation, 26 June
 Political declaration, proposed elements
 Preliminary prog of meetings & activities
 Link to other key WSSD documents

 WEHAB Framework Papers

Partnerships/Type 2 Outcomes
 Background information and resources
 Vice-Chair's summary on partnerships, annex: Guiding principles for partnerships

ENB's coverage of:

PrepCom IV
 PrepCom III
 PrepCom II
 Prepcom I
 Regional preparatory meetings
 Introduction to the WSSD
- a CSD primer.
 Linkage's portal to the WSSD
- includes background info, photo gallery of key players, WSSD news, publications, calendar, and other online resources.


Partnerships: Water and Sanitation

Margaret Catley-Carlson, Chair, Global Water Partnership
, underscored the need for ‘integrated water resources management.’ She noted that water was not accorded sufficient priority as the well-to-do already have access to water, and suggested considering ways to create the political ambience necessary to make it a priority. She underscored the importance of bringing ‘all to the table’ for this task.

Gourisankar Ghosh, Executive Director, Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council
, stressed the need for a separate sanitation target. He proposed a new paradigm that would be: middle-of-the-road, neither provide free water nor leave it to the market; multi-sectoral; people-centered; and both bottom-up and top-down. He noted that current annual expenditure on water was US$ 11billion, and an additional US$ 9 billion would enable the international community to reach the target of halving by 2015 the number of people (1.1 billion) without access to water.

Left photo: The panel on Partnership on Water and Sanitation. Listen to the real audio of the complete inter-active discussion on Water and Sanitation (approximately 1 hour) or in three parts (Part 1 , Part 2 and Part 3) as moderated by Jan Pronk.
Statements by Governments on Water and Sanitation
to follow
SWITZERLAND raised the need for coherence in national water resource management and coordination among international institutions.  
URUGUAY cited its use of portable sanitation and water supply stations as an example of how developing countries can help solve water access problems. 
The US noted the importance of ecosystem management, including trans-boundary water basins, and pledged take more action on watershed management.
THE UN COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS stated that access to clean water was a human right, and noted the overemphasis on  profit-making and the difficulty local governments have when reclaiming water delivery services after failed privatization efforts. 

Stephen Karekezi, African Energy Policy Research Network, stressed that small-scale energy investments have significant benefits for the poor. He added that small-scale energy technologies are locally made and can be sustained.

Thomas B. Johansson, Director, International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics, highlighted the importance of targets and timetables. He suggested elements for a policy agenda including capacity building, energy efficiency, and ‘making markets work better’.

Main Committee:

In an evening session the Vienna setting continued debating language on chemicals and finally agreed on language to support time-bound measures that would “lead to the minimization of significant adverse effects,” and deleted text in a separate provision regarding an international response to impacts of heavy metals as part of the package. Right delegate from South Africa making an intervention.
Wednesday, 28 August 2002
as of 6:00 pm (GMT +2)

Partnership Plenaries were convened on water and sanitation in the morning and energy in the afternoon, including expert presentations, commentary from discussants and more general debate among States. Left photo: Jan Pronk, Special Envoy of the UN Secretary General to the WSSD moderating the inter-active discussions on the Partnerships on Water.

Left photo: View of the crowd from the plenary.
Main Committee:

The contact group on institutional arrangements met throughout the day making small steps toward agreement, particularly on language regarding the role of ECOSOC with regard to the follow-up of the Summit’s outcomes and the Monterrey Consensus.

The Vienna setting continued deliberations on outstanding text. Discussions focused on a time-bound target of 2020 for reducing the adverse effects of chemicals on health and the environment, although consensus continued to prove illusive. Informal consultations are still ongoing for the following issues: the Rio Principles; finance and trade; energy; chemicals; climate; Africa; consumption and production; and sanitation. Right photo: Main Committee Chair, Emil Salim in discussion with delegates.

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