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Intersessional Ad Hoc Working Groups of the Ninth Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development

UN Headquarters, New York
6-16 March 2001                                                                                           


Web archives:
|Tuesday 6| Wednesday 7| Thursday 8 | Friday 9 |
| Monday 12| Tuesday 13| Wednesday 14| Thursday 15| Friday 16


ENB Summary Report of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Transport and Atmosphere HTML PDF TXT
BNT Resume du Groupe de Travail de la CDD sur les Transports et l'Atmosphère    HTML PDF TEXT

Highlights from Thursday, 15 March

Delegates attending the Intersessional Ad Hoc Working Group met informally throughout the morning and afternoon, and convened at 5:30 pm for an evening session and considered the Co-Chairs' Summary and possible elements for a draft decision on International Cooperation for an Enabling Environment. The meeting adjourned at 9:30 pm.

In the corridors: The major achievement today was the near consensus on how to carry forward the work on indicators. Apparently, participants are almost agreed that the development and implementation of indicators will be subjected to an intergovernmental review process. Many considered that the daylong informal consultations among groups had been fruitful, noting also that from the deliberations on the elements for a draft decision on international cooperation for an enabling environment, participants had geared up not only for CSD-9 negotiations but for Earth Summit 2002 as well.

Above photo: Co-Chair Alison Drayton (Guyana) speaks with the delegate from India about the text on an enabling environment

Click here for coverage of the side event on The Access Initiative: An Initiative to Promote Access to Information, Participation and Justice in Environmental Decisionmaking

ENB Coverage of the Ad Hoc Open-Ended Intergovernmental Group of Experts on Energy and Sustainable Development met in New York from 26 February to 2 March 2001

These photos are copyrighted by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD). For permission to use any of the photos on this site, please contact Kimo Goree at For enlarged photos to download, double click the desired photo.

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Delegates met informally for most of the day and reconvened formally at 5:30 PM to discuss the Co-Chair's document on possible elements for a draft decision on an enabling environment.
The EU meeting to discuss the Co-Chairs documents

The G-77/China meeting to discuss the Co-Chairs' documents
Possible elements for a draft decision on international cooperation and an enabling environment
Co-Chair Madina Jarbussynova (Kazakhstan) chaired the evening session on possible elements for a draft decision on an enabling environment
Delegates in the ECOSOC chamber
JoAnne DiSano, Director, Division for Sustainable Development, Mohammad Reza Salamat, Iran and Chair of the G-77/China and Alexander De Barros, Secretariat

Iran, for the G-77/China, making general comments on the Co-Chairs' Summary on an Enabling Environment, said text should reflect that , inter alia, private sector flows complement Official Development Assistance (ODA); and the GEF work could be improved. He suggested alternative text on eliminating unnecessary duplication between bilateral and multilateral development institutions. On agricultural subsidies, he called for a reference to energy taxes and to the harmful impact of subsidies on the environment. He proposed additional text stressing that environmental standards should not become trade barriers.

Iran, making general comments on the possible elements for a draft decision, said too much emphasis was placed on the role of the private sector, and called for highlighting: the role of poverty eradication; improving the role of the GEF; removing harmful subsidies; and furthering efforts to cancel debt burden.

Responding to interventions made by other delegates, Iran, for the G-77/China, proposed language from the Millennium Declaration emphasizing the need for good governance at the national and international levels and transparency in the areas of finance, trade and monitoring systems.

Sweden, for the EU, making general comments on the possible elements for a draft decision, stated that although the EU recognized that international cooperation is the subject under consideration, it would have preferred a more balanced approach regarding domestic activities.

Sweden for the EU makes specific proposals to the section on general considerations, and suggested text on, inter alia, the importance of a favorable and enabling domestic environment based on a sound macro-economic framework and on good governance, and proposed language stating that "many" developing countries have not yet seen substantial benefits from globalization.

Canada makes general remarks on the draft decision on an enabling environment and called for more balance with regard to international and domestic governance issues. She also said CSD-9 could consider Chapter 2 of Agenda 21 in order to offer input on the UN Third Conference on Least Developed Countries (LDC III) and the Financing for Development conference on improving the reach and effectiveness of international cooperation. Regarding specific comments to the section on general considerations, Canada supported deleting text on different contributions to global environmental degradation and proposed CSD-8 text stating that developed countries should work in partnership with developing countries to help develop, adopt and implement effective strategies to achieve sustainable development, consistent with commitments made at UNCED.

Nigeria, making general comments on the Summary of the discussion, said globalization was not accurately visualized in the summary. He said the inequity of trade benefits must be better reflected and called for language on and commitment to implementation.

On general consideration, Nigeria said if good governance at the national level is discussed then good governance of multilateral organizations must be discussed, and highlighted differences between developing countries and countries with economies in transition.

Australia, making general comments on the document on possible elements, called for a better balance between the impact of ODA with private resource flows, and on general considerations, Australia proposed language on: globalization having the potential to deliver positive and sustainable benefits to all countries, with awareness of the emerging inequity in the realization of those benefits; and reaffirming that economic growth and increased trading opportunities provided by trade liberalization are essential for an enabling environment.

New Zealand, making specific comments on general considerations, suggested text stating that the Commission could: stress the need for good governance within each country and at the international level; and reiterate that an open, rule-based, equitable, secure, non-discriminatory, transparent and predictable multilateral trade system is an essential element of an enabling environment.

On general considerations, the US, proposed text recognizing that an enabling domestic environment that incorporates, inter alia, the rule of law, good governance and anti-corruption efforts, is essential for sustainable development.

On international cooperation, the US reiterated the US had not committed to the ODA target of .7% and proposed language to reflect that some countries had not made this commitment.

Japan making general comments on the elements for a draft decision document. To balance the text, Canada, Australia, the US, Norway and Japan highlighted different aspects, including on: domestic and international governance issues; private sector resource and trade flows, private investments and foreign direct investment (FDI); and trade benefits.

CO-Chair Madina Jarbussynova (Kazakhstan) and Alexandar De Barros (Secretariat)

The Access Initiative: An Initiative to Promote Access to Information, Participation and Justice in Environmental Decisionmaking

The Access Initiative seeks to promote access to information, participation and justice in environmental decision-making--three principles endorsed by governments in Principle 10 of the Rio Declaration. A partnership led by World Resources Institute (WRI), based in the US, Environmental Management and Law Association (EMLA), based in Hungary, and Corporacion Participa, based in Chile, is developing and pilot-testing a set of indicators for use by public interest groups to track their countries' progress over time in implementing the principles. The indicators are designed to assess the system of public access to environmental decision-making. Country-level pilot texts will seek to ask the following questions: Does the national-level policy framework guarantee "access" rights; is public information available regarding pollution that affects the health of large groups of people; Does the public have access to information about the environmental performance of industrial facilities; Are decisions on policies or specific projects supported by mechanisms for meaningful public participation; Does the government invest in building public capacity to utilize access to environmental decision-making; and Are there mechanisms for redress and conflict resolution for failure to inform and involve the public in environmental decision-making?

The following Indicators Categories were identified: General Framework Guaranteeing Access Rights; Information about the Environment and Pollution with High Health Impacts; Access to Environmental Impact Assessment; Access to Facility-level Environmental Management; Access to Concessions and Public Procurement Agreements; Access to Plans, Policies and Programs; and Capacity.

The Access Initiative will pilot text the indicators in up to ten countries: Latin America (Chile, Mexico and Bolivia); North America (US); Europe (Hungary and possibly Russia and Kazakhstan); Africa (Uganda and South Africa); and Asia (Thailand and India)

To learn more about the Access Initiative, please visit

Or contact the Access Initiative Team Members directly:

Marjorie Greene,,

Judy Amorosa,,

Maria Eugenia Brockmann,,


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