Rio +20 - Newsletter: Volume 2, issue 18 (30 september 2011)

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Rio+20: Making it Happen …

Rio+20: Making it Happen
Newsletter of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development

Special Issue on Major Groups
30 September 2011, Volume 2, Issue 18

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  • 1. Available Now: Rio+20 BrochureRio+20: Making it HappenNewsletter of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable DevelopmentSpecial Issue on Major Groups30 September 2011, Volume 2, Issue 18 The SDGs: What Are They? If Rio+20 aims to secure renewed political commitment to sustainable development, then we need concrete ways of grounding that commitment on the agenda of Member States, say the Governments of Colombia and Guatemala in a proposal that aims In our efforts to enhance the broadly to commit stakeholders to participation of major groups, we are achieving a sequence of targets for dedicating this special issue of Rio+20: sustainable development—similar to Making it Happen to the perspectives the Millennium Development Goals of major groups stakeholders. (MDGs)—known as the Sustainable Development Goals (or SDGs) that would be tied to accelerating the implementation of Agenda 21. The proposal insists that SDGs and MDGs be fully complimentary. However, while the MDGs applied only to developing countries, SDGs would have universal application. Quote A global movement of NGOs also believes that sustainable development must be achieved in "One of the fundamental prerequisites “an ambitious, time-bound and accountable manner”. A team of experts from 25 civil society for the achievement of sustainable organizations presented a set of 17 draft SDGs as part of the Chair’s Text to the 64th DPI/NGO development is broad public Conference on Sustainable Societies, Responsive Citizens in Bonn, which aims to inform the participation in decision-making.” Rio+20 process. Agenda 21, Chapter 23 Those NGOs in Bonn highlight the necessity of achieving the full implementation of Agenda 21, and see SDGs as a plan for all governments to do that within their respective capacities. Will major groups come to more broadly embrace the SDGs as a way forward? Some of the SDGs suggested are based on commitments already made by governments and other stakeholders, others are newly proposed by civil society, and much remains to be articulated. All nine major groups sectors have affirmed their desire to renew multi-stakeholder dialogues with Member States and UN system partners to explore initiatives such as the SDGs throughout the Rio+20 process. Youth Harmonize Strategies for Rio+20 Sometimes called the ‘moral stakeholders’ of sustainable development, youth undoubtedly stand to lose the most as a consequence of global inaction. But influencing negotiations from a position of inexperience requires strategy and willingness to compete for the attention of young people in order to captivate and mobilize their inputs for Rio+20.www.uncsd2012.org/majorgroups Such is the challenge of the major group for Children and Youth, which produced its first unified strategy for Rio+20 under the auspices of the European Youth Forum, held from 21 to 25 September at the University on Youth and Development in Mollina, Spain. Follow Rio+20 Featured prominently in Mollina was the Visit us on Facebook and Twitter theme of youth volunteerism, similarly reflected at the DPI/NGO Conference in Bonn just several weeks prior where the 10th anniversary of the International Year of Volunteers was recognized as a main theme alongside sustainable develop- ment. Most partners and advocates from the Send us feedback major group for Children and Youth are themselves volunteers, and balance the work of uncsd2012@un.org coordinating the major group with demanding professional lives. More information on the official steering committee for Rio+20 can be found online here. 1
  • 2. Major Groups Scale-up Their Initiatives Upcoming Events The most compelling strengths of major groups can be Delhi Dialogue on ‘Green Economy shared through their experiences of implementing and Inclusive Growth’ sustainable development around the world. That is 3 - 4 October 2011 why many are working to scale-up their initiatives to New Delhi, India present to Member States in Rio de Janeiro next year. [more information] The major group for Local Authorities has proposed a Green Jobs Summit global town hall at Rio+20 in order to convene a central 4 October 2011 dialogue on green urban economies and the urban Toronto, Canadafuture of our planet. The major group for Farmers is exploring the opportunity for Rio+20 to [more information]build a knowledge base for agriculture, improve education for the rural poor and enhance thedialogue between food production, income, stewardship and quality of life. Sharing Green Economy Best Practices Major groups have traditionally been important innovators, partners and implementers Towards Rio+20alongside governments and UN agencies. Key global stakeholders mustn’t delay in bringing 11 - 12 October 2011their initiatives forward in order to explore effective partnerships and build linkages so that Warsaw, Polandtheir messages will resonate at the highest political level next year. [more information] More information on major groups initiatives and activities can be found online here. European Regional Science and Technology Workshop 12 - 14 October 2011CIVICUS Gets Behind Rio+20 Helsinki, Finland Effective and sustainable civic participation requires citizens who enjoy rights of free associa- [more information]tion and engage all sectors of society, says CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation,which recently became a global Nigerian Youth Summit on Sustainableco-organizing partner on behalf of the Development - SustainNIGERIAmajor group for Non-governmental 14 - 15 October 2011Organizations. The arrival of CIVICUS Abuja, Nigeriaonto the diverse scene of major groups [more information]organizing partners promises to delivermore engagement with stakeholders Rio+20 Preparatory Meeting in thefrom the global South and contribute Arab Regiontoward articulating the social pillar of 16 -17 October 2011sustainable development. Cairo, Egypt The Brussels-based Northern Alliance [more information]for Sustainability (ANPED) has performedcrucial coordination functions for major Major Groups & Stakeholdersgroups within sustainable development Tristan Brand/CIVICUS Asia-Pacific Meeting ‘The Road toprocesses for years, and is pleased to welcome CIVICUS as a co-organizing partner for the NGOs Rio 2012: Charting our Path’sector in the run-up to Rio+20. 17 - 18 October 2011 The 10th CIVICUS World Assembly, attended by more than 800 delegates of various social Seoul, Republic of Koreamovements, converged around the theme of sustainable, inclusive development based on [more information]human rights, and was held in Montreal from 10-12 September. The themes of Rio+20 featuredprominently on the agenda and within the break-out sessions that took place between key Rio+20 Preparatory Meeting forfacilitators from within the global NGO community. Asia and the Pacific ‘Non-governmental Organizations’ are 19 - 20 October 2011recognized as one of the nine sectors of Seoul, Republic of Koreasocial, economic and scientific stakeholders Don’t Miss Training! [more information]empowered by Agenda 21, which has enabled The Rio+20 Secretariat, in partnership withinnovative standards of non-state the UN Regional Economic Commissions Rio+20 Preparatory Meeting for Africaparticipation within major intergovernmental and Stakeholder Forum, are offering the 20 - 25 October 2011p ro ces se s re la ted to su sta in a b le following opportunities for regional major Addis Ababa, Ethiopiadevelopment. groups and other stakeholder partners to [more information] receive one day of training to enhance awareness of the themes of sustainable GURN/ITUC on ‘A Green EconomyWe Want You… development and build capacity to engage that Works for Social Progress’…To share your views on the nexus between with the Rio+20 process. 24 - 25 October 2011water, energy and food security! The major • 15 October in Cairo, Egypt Brussels, Belgiumgroup for Women will be conducting an • 16 October in Seoul, Republic of Korea [more information]online survey until 15 October as part of a • 19 October in Addis Ababa, Ethiopiaglobal consultation process feeding into • 30 November in Geneva, Switzerland Complete listing of meetings and events available at www.uncsd2012.orgRio+20 discussions. Participate today! Contact us for more information. 2