20 years ago, I was born. I’m glad the world starting thinking about environmental protection and sustainable development then. Because it’s going to affect my generation, and the future generations.
And now, my generation is starting to stand up and speak out, following and trying to understand global, regional and local issues. Well some of us anyway… But point is, my generation is starting to become “of age”.
I’ve been trying to follow Rio+20, reading the relevant articles and sharing them. Though not actively participating..
What I’m not so sure about: UK has committed to including including natural capital within their system of national accounts by 2020. Is it a good thing though?
What’s terrible: the weak draft text, countries still not wanting to commit and the world leaders not pushing for more to be done. Specifically,
– no end to fossil fuel subsidies
– no agreement for management of international waters (High Seas)
– and carbon emission are rising but not much is done about it
There are many things we (they, the diplomats and political leaders) could have done, many things that people are calling/have called to be done. But in the end, still not quite done. Why? Because economics is still more impt, even though there is much evidence that natural resources need to be taken care of for economic growth to be sustained? Or is it inertia, not wanting to change status quo because they’re comfortable with what they’re doing now?
We’re still not acting as one planet, as global citizens, but looking out only for personal interest, for their own country, or sometimes just for themselves, the (rich, upper-class) politicians. And this will not do.
[Updated: 7 July 2012. Some links added (in green font)]
- Rio summit: Little progress, 20 years on – bbc.co.uk
- Rio+20 summit opens amid protests – video – guardian.co.uk
At the opening of the Rio+20 environmental summit – a follow-up to the 1992 Earth summit – the UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, urges world leaders to commit to sustainable development before it is too late. Downtown Rio de Janeiro was partly shut down as an estimated 50,000 protesters, some of whom were naked, took to the streets
- Rio+20 outcome a focal point for frustration among campaigners – guardian.co.uk
United in disappointment about the summit’s upshot, supporters of a diverse range of issues marched through the streets of Rio
- Rio+20 Earth Summit: campaigners decry final document – guardian.co.uk
‘Pathway for a sustainable future’ declared, but Greenpeace says summit was failure of epic proportions
- Global Economy Limits Expectations at Earth Summit in Brazil – nytimes.com
- Rio summit ends with warning on corporate power – bbc.co.uk
- Rio+20: Jeffrey Sachs on how business destroyed democracy and virtuous life – guardian.co.uk
The world famous economist on corporate control, the search for happiness and why a multi-disciplinary approach is the only way to find solutions to sustainability challenges
- Rio+20 summit: the final day as it happened – guardian.co.uk
Rolling news, comment and developments from the closing day of the UN conference on sustainable development in Brazil
- Rio+20 summit criticised as ‘disappointing’ – bbc.co.uk
- Many “mays” but few “musts” – economist.com
A limp agreement at the UN’s vaunted environmental summit
- We Have Met the Solution and It Is Us – nytimes.com
- Judges for the environment: we have a crucial role to play – guardian.co.uk
Rio+20 missed an opportunity to emphasise how people can effect real change through courts
- Rio+20 draft text is 283 paragraphs of fluff – guardian.co.uk
World leaders have spent 20 years bracing themselves to express ‘deep concern’ about the world’s environmental crises, but not to do anything about them
- Rio+20 Earth Summit (dedicated webpage covering the event) – guardian.co.uk
- Singapore National Statement, Delivered by Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20), Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, on 22 June 2012 – app.mewr.gov.sg
- It’s Happening, but Not in Rio – nytimes.com
- Rio+20: A Crisis is a Terrible Thing to Waste – progressive.org
- Wealth gap curbs Rio goals – nature.com
Outcome of last week’s Earth Summit reflects the divided priorities of rich and poor nations.
- Climate Conversations – Five things we’ve learned from Rio+20 – trust.org
Shall end off with The Lorax’s Letter, which I stumbled upon yesterday.
I am immortal, yet I am dying. How can you slaughter my race, again and again. You promised, you campaigned, you protested, you donated, you appointed ministers, you wrote books, you researched, you did everything; except destroying. Why is the environment the last thing on your list? Don’t you realize you can’t live if it wasn’t for me? I, speaker for the trees, created and continues to replenish the air you breathe. Please “show not tell”. Use your actions to prove your words.
The world may seam to be made by money. In fact, for that matter; even if it is ran by money, it is still made of nature. It all may change though, very quickly. Take a look:
This is China, the world’s most populated country. What’s in this photo of Shanghai? Well, buildings, signs, and very few trees. These trees are all carefully planted and fertilized unnaturally. To be honest, this place is not so different than Thneedville:
Artificial trees, buildings, and signs. You don’t want to turn the world into Thneedville! Trust me.
Please help. I know you know about climate change. I know you know about pollution. I know you know to turn off the lights. But do you know about an effective and easy way to save the planet? UNPLUG. It is simple, but most people don’t think about it. Unplugging is effective because even if a(n) appliance/electronic/gizmo/etc. is turned off, it still consumes energy. Please unplug (or turn off at the wall socket) toasters, blenders, coffee makers, chargers, TVs, disc players, game consoles, and whatever else is not in use. In fact a TV “turned off” (left on standby) uses 85% of the energy it uses when it is turned on.
Please help! As a Cree Prophecy once said to YOUR race:
“When all the trees have been cut down,
when all the animals have been hunted,
when all the waters are polluted,
when all the air is unsafe to breathe,
only then will you discover you cannot eat money”
Do it for me , The Lorax, do it for the Cree. For that matter, do it for YOU. This is as much as your world, as it is mine.
Pretty, pretty, please? With a cherry on top?