So Rio+20 starts today and if you are an American you probably would not know it. Our President is not going (but Hilary Clinton is), there is not any mention of it on our news, and the US Congress is considering lowering our air quality standards?!
Twenty years after the first conference in Rio. The UN has convened a group governments, the private sector, NGOs and other groups, to come together to shape how we can reduce poverty, advance social equity and ensure environmental protection on an ever more crowded planet to get to the future we want.
Go to the UN Rio+20 webpage for more information but below are the 13 points of the common vision for the future we all really want.
On Twitter follow#rioplus20
You can also get updates on Facebook from Rio+Social
THE FUTURE WE WANT
I. Our Common Vision
1. We, the heads of State and Government and high level representatives, having met at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from 20-22 June 2012, with full participation of civil society, renew our commitment to sustainable development, and to ensure the promotion of economically, socially and environmentally sustainable future for our planet and for present and future generations.
2. Eradicating poverty is the greatest global challenge facing the world today and an indispensable requirement for sustainable development. In this regard we are committed to free humanity from poverty and hunger as a matter of urgency.
3. We therefore acknowledge the need to further mainstream sustainable development at all levels integrating economic, social and environmental aspects and recognizing their interlinkages, so as to achieve sustainable development in all its dimensions.
4. We recognize that poverty eradication, changing unsustainable and promoting sustainable patterns of consumption and production, and protecting and managing the natural resource base of economic and social development are the overarching objectives of and essential requirements for sustainable development. We also reaffirm the need to achieve sustainable development by: promoting sustained, inclusive and equitable economic growth, creating greater opportunities for all, reducing inequalities, raising basic standards of living; fostering equitable social development and inclusion; and promoting integrated and sustainable management of natural resources and ecosystems that supports inter alia economic, social and human development while facilitating ecosystem conservation, regeneration and restoration and resilience in the face of new and emerging challenges.
5. We reaffirm our commitment to making every effort to accelerate the achievement of the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015.
6. We recognize that people are at the center of sustainable development and in this regard, we strive for a world which is just, equitable and inclusive, and we commit to work together to promote sustained and inclusive economic growth, social development, environmental protection and thereby to benefit all.
7. We reaffirm that we continue to be guided by the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, and with full respect for international law and its principles.
8. We also reaffirm the importance of freedom, peace and security, respect for all human rights, including the right to development and the right to an adequate standard of living, including the right to food, the rule of law, gender equality and women’s empowerment and the overall commitment to just and democratic societies for development.
9. We reaffirm the importance of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as well as other international instruments relating to human rights and international law. We emphasize the responsibilities of all States, in conformity with the Charter of the United Nations, to respect, protect and promote human rights and fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction of any kind to race, colour, sex, language or religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth, disability or other status.
10. We acknowledge that democracy, good governance and the rule of law, at the national and international levels, as well as an enabling environment are essential for sustainable development, including sustained and inclusive economic growth, social development, environmental protection and the eradication of poverty and hunger. We reaffirm that to achieve our sustainable development goals we need institutions at all levels that are effective, transparent, accountable and democratic.
11. We reaffirm our commitment to strengthening international cooperation to address the persistent challenges related to sustainable development for all, in particular in developing countries. In this regard, we reaffirm the need to achieve economic stability and sustained economic growth, promotion of social equity, and protection of the environment, while enhancing gender equality and women’s empowerment, and equal opportunities for all, and the protection, survival and development of children to their full potential, including through education.
12. We resolve to take urgent action to achieve sustainable development. We therefore renew our commitment to sustainable development, assessing the progress to date and the remaining gaps in the implementation of the outcomes of the major summits on sustainable development and addressing new and emerging challenges. We express our determination to address the themes of the Conference, namely a green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication, and the institutional framework for sustainable development.
13. We recognize that people’s opportunities to influence their lives and future, participate in decision making and voice their concerns are fundamental for sustainable development. We underscore that sustainable development requires concrete and urgent action. It can only be achieved with a broad alliance of people, governments, civil society and private sector, all working together to secure the future we want for present and future generations.