Rosemary Sainty - Australia at Rio+20 Seminar - Presentation

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Australia at Rio+20 Seminar Facilitator, Rosemary Sainty

Former Head, Secretariat UN Global Compact Network Australia and
Adviser, Corporate Engagement, Transparency Australia

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Rosemary Sainty - Australia at Rio+20 Seminar - Presentation

  1. 1. Australia at Rio+20 Collective Action forSustainable Development:Rio+20 and the transition to a green economy. Convenor: United Nations Association of Australia (Vic) Facilitator: Rosemary Sainty Former Head, Secretariat UN Global Compact Network Australia and Adviser, Corporate Engagement, Transparency Australia Melbourne, Thursday 17 May, 2012
  2. 2. Milestones• 1972 — United Nations Conference on the Human Environment, which led to the establishment of the United Nations Environment Programme.• 1983 - Brundtland Commission established and in 1987, handed down report ―Our Common Future‖ - defining sustainable development. And its 3 pillars.• 1992 – UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED or the Rio Earth Summit) : the Rio Declaration, Agenda 21, the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Forest Principles and the UN Framework for the Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) treaty to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations.• 1992 — Launch of Australia‘s National Strategy for Ecologically Sustainable Development.• 1997 — Rio+5 Review Kyoto Protocol formally adopted at COP3- ―operationalizing ‖ the Convention, to stabilize greenhouse gas emissions with binding targets (37 industrialized countries) 5% emissions reduction compared to 1990 levels over the five-year period 2008 to 2012 and market-based mechanisms - Emissions Trading, the Clean Development Mechanism and Joint Implementation.• 1999 — Australia‘s Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.
  3. 3. Milestones contd• 2002 – Johannesburg World Summit on Sustainable Development 2006 – Australian Business Roundtable on Climate Change• 2007- An Inconvenient Truth, the 4th IPCC report and the ―Stern Review: The Economics of Climate Change‖. In Australia –70% of population want action on Climate Change• 2007 — Australia‘s ratification of the Kyoto Protocol• 2008- GFC• 2009- COP15: Copenhagen Accord – but was not adopted by all governments. A 2 degree goal and fast-start climate financing• 2011- COP17: Durban Platform for Enhanced Action, Now 195 Parties to the Convention (including 48 developing) agree to second commitment period on the Kyoto Protocol and its mechanisms and drawing up a new, post-2020 mitigation framework. Saved the UNFCCC process but without defined targets until 2020 or capital defined for the green climate fund. Continuing deep divisions between US, EU, India and China• 2012 – UNEP and WWF reflections
  4. 4. Stocktake• Population now 7 billion- 2 billion more since Brundtland• Biodiversity has declined globally by around 30 per cent between 1970 and 2008• Demand on natural resources has doubled since 1966 - currently using the equivalent of 1.5 planets• High-income countries have a footprint five times greater than that of low-income countries• CO2 continue to rise: up 40 per cent on 1992 with two-thirds of the increase in the second decade (UNEP, 2011). Living Planet Report 2012, WWF
  5. 5. Forward Motion – A Green Economy.On the Road to Rio+20:• The Green Economy ―is one that results in improved human well-being and social equity, while significantly reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities.‖ UNEP, 2011• 2010 - UN Secretary General establishes High-Level Panel on Global Sustainability and commends report : ―Resilient People, Resilient Planet: a Future Worth Choosing‖ Recommendations taken up in the zero draft• First draft of the Rio+20 outcomes document: ―Zero Draft on The Future We Want‖• Increasing consensus that economic reporting system has to shift to ‗beyond GDP‘ mindset.
  6. 6. Process at Rio+20 Earth Summit 20 - 22 June 2012AKA the UN Conference on Sustainable DevelopmentObjectives:• to secure renewed political commitment to sustainable development;• to assess progress towards internationally agreed goals on sustainable development• and to address new and emerging challenges.The Summit will also focus on two specific themes:• a green economy in the context of poverty eradication and sustainable development,• and an institutional framework for sustainable developmentand 7 priority areas….. decent jobs, energy, sustainable cities, food security and sustainableagriculture, water, oceans and disaster readiness.• Numbers: 80 heads of state and 40,000 + people from 1,000 organisations
  7. 7. Rio+20 On-Site Side events• 13 -15 June - 3rd Preparatory Committee Meeting of UNCSD• 16 -19 June - Sustainable Development Dialogue ‗s‘ - High level action- oriented debate• 13- 22 June - More than 500 on-site side events sponsored by Governments, Major Groups, UN system and other Inter-Governmental Organizations – Eg: Transparency International on climate finance and the importance of anti- corruption measures• Off-site events from 20-22 June also include the Stakeholder Forum and the Peoples Summit Consultative status with ECOSOC provides an opportunity for non- government stakeholders e.g. Major Groups (business, NGOs etc.) and the United Nations to work closely towards a common global agenda.
  8. 8. Rio+20 Corporate Sustainability Forum: Innovation & Collaboration for the Future We Want• From 15-18 June 2012 - Organised by the United Nations Global Compact, 2000+ delegates• Private sector has a critical role to play in sustainability• Innovative public-private partnerships, business contributions and new commitments• Business and investors - opportunity to meet with governments, local authorities, civil society and UN entities• 60 thematic sessions linked to the Rio+20 agenda• Organized by a wide range of organizations e.g. – Sustainable Stock Exchanges 2012 Global Dialogue - Global Compact, UNCTAD, PRI, UNEP-FI – Global Reporting Initiative – report or explain- Clause 24 of the Zero draft – Climate Institute – Clean Revolution Launch – UNEP FI: Launch of the Natural Capital Declaration (NAB) – Global Compact Network Australia
  9. 9. Business Action for Sustainable Development 2012 (BASD 2012)• 19 June - BASD 2012 Business is the official UN Major Group Business & Industry event• Convened by the – International Chamber of Commerce, – the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, – and the United Nations Global Compact• A wide range of international industry associates eg International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM)• Final business and industry leaders input to the Rio+20 Conference• It is imperative that governments provide clear policies and regulatory frameworks
  10. 10. Challenges• Fallout from the financial crisis, the sovereign debt crisis, many countries are preoccupied with their own affairs• Rapid shift of economic growth and power from the traditional centres towards the east and the south• Two largest powers, the United States and China, are facing leadership elections will weaken their ability to act decisively• Challenges for Australian Government - Political instability , drop in community support• Is the UN system best to drive change? Is global consensus realistic? Better suited to role of convenor, consolidator of global efforts and legitimator of these?
  11. 11. Opportunities• UN process has demonstrated that it can birth ideas, projects, partnerships, and organizations• Heightened recognition of interconnectivity, integration, interdependence between the three pillars – economic, social and environmental- reflected by the many events and stakeholders in the lead up to the conference and by those of us here today!• Engagement with the business community- whose collective capital now equals that of the world‘s combined GDPs (from only 25% in 1980)• Georg Kell: Even without government support, believes that collaboration and innovation within the private sector can help create solutions to many of the worlds problems.• Secretary General: Fragmentation in terms of concepts, policies, practices and institutions drives the sustainable development implementation gap. Need more coherent approaches• Wisdom in lowering the hype, recognising the constraints governments are under, and go for the practical steps forward - rather than the Copenhagen ―turning point for mankind‖, a sort of double or quits where the future of the planet is being played in the space of a few days. Nonetheless, Rio+20 should mark a step forward. (Peoples Summit, 2012)
  12. 12. Government Perspective• Donna Petrachenko First Assistant Secretary Australian Government Rio+20 Taskforce
  13. 13. Panel 1• Nathan Fabian Chief Executive, Investor Group on Climate Change – Investor perspective• Charles Berger Director of Strategic Ideas Australian Conservation Foundation – NGO perspective• Melanie Stutsel Director, Health Safety Environment and Community Policy, Minerals Council of Australia – Mining Industry perspective
  14. 14. Panel 2• Caroline Bayliss Australia Director, The Climate Group – Collective perspective• Matthew Tukaki Australian Network Representative United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) – UN Business-led perspective• Victoria Whitaker Network Manager Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Focal Point Australia – Reporting perspective

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