The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, Rio+20, was an action-oriented conference focusing on implementation of sustainable development.
This newsletter aims to highlight the work carried out by Member States, United Nations system, Major Groups and other relevant stakeholders in implementing sustainable development and leading the way to the Future We Want.
High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development's inaugural session
The first meeting of the High-level Political Forum (HLPF) on Sustainable Development will take place on Tuesday, 24 September 2013 from 3pm - 7pm. Its theme will be “Building the future we want: from Rio+20 to the post-2015 development agenda”.
The programme of this inaugural session has been posted on the Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform. It includes two Leaders Dialogues: “HLPF - From Vision to Action” and “Global partnerships for development to create jobs and improve sustainable lifestyles”. It will be live streamed on UN web TV (http://webtv.un.org/).
Consistent with its intergovernmental universal character, the HLPF will provide political leadership, guidance and recommendations for sustainable development. It will follow-up and review progress in the implementation of commitments and enhance the integration of the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development. It will also ensure the appropriate consideration of new and emerging challenges.
At Rio+20, Member States had agreed to establish a high level political forum to replace the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD), which will have its final meeting on Friday, 20 September 2013. Among other things, this last CSD session will feature a high level dialogue involving former CSD Chairpersons.
The CSD was established by the UN General Assembly in December 1992 to ensure effective follow-up of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), also known as the Earth Summit. From its inception, the CSD was highly participatory in structure and outlook, by engaging in its formal proceedings a wide range of stakeholders and partners through innovative formulae. Under the CSD, governments convened twenty annual sessions, helping advance sustainable development across the world.
The Commission's last session will review its rich legacy, but it will also look forward with excitement to the inauguration of the HLPF, the new and promising forum that will take its place.
A redesigned website and logo have been launched for the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States (SIDS), which will take place from 1 to 4 September 2014 in Apia, Samoa.
The Conference will focus the world's attention on a group of countries that remain a special case for sustainable development in view of their unique and particular vulnerabilities.
The SIDS Inter-Regional Preparatory Meeting (IPM), in preparation for the Third International Conference on SIDS, was held at the Hilton Barbados Resort, Bridgetown, Barbados during the period August 26 - 28, 2013. At the meeting, three regions presented their regional outcomes, as well debated SIDS positions and priorities to bring to the global process leading up to the SIDS Conference.
More information can be found on the redesigned website.
UNOSD Summer School on Sustainability Transition Policies and Practices
The United Nations Office for Sustainable Development (UNOSD) organised its first Summer School on Sustainability Transition Policies and Practices, which took place from 22 July to 2 August 2013 at the Yonsei University International campus, Republic of Korea.
Despite 25 years of impressive global efforts for transitions towards sustainable development, they are still happening much too slowly to address overstretched planetary boundaries and multifaceted social crises. There remains a debilitating gap in understanding how technical knowledge gets, or not, deployed and scaled-up into national strategies, and implemented through concrete policies.
The UNOSD Summer School therefore endeavoured to confront this gap by providing the evidence and skills for a more effective and accelerated implementation of sustainability policies through best practices. Sustainability experts from the Stockholm Environment Institute, the University of Utah, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the United Nations University, the Korean Environment Institute, the Korea Research Institute for Human Settlements, as well as from UN-DESA and UNOSD taught the course.
For more information, please visit the UNOSD website or its Summer School pages.
Finance experts from UN Member States meet to mobilize resources for sustainable future
The first session of the Intergovernmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Financing was held from 28 - 30 August at UN Headquarters in New York. It focused on the Committee's agenda and modalities, content and scope of work.
The Committee, which was mandated as an outcome of the Rio+20 Conference, is to consider how to mobilize resources from a variety of sources and utilize effective financing to give strong support to developing countries in their efforts to promote sustainable development. It is expected to prepare a report proposing options on an effective sustainable development financing strategy by 2014.
“A key responsibility of this intergovernmental committee of experts is to develop an
understanding of and then suggest improvements to the currently fragmented development financing landscape. We must seek a solution to the current state of affairs in which different funding processes have led to a disjointed and piecemeal funding environment,” said H.E. Mr. Enrique Román-Morey, Acting President of the UN General Assembly, speaking on behalf of Vuk Jeremić, President of the UN General Assembly.
More information on the Committee and the first session can be found on the Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform.
Online consultation for the UN Global Sustainable Development Report
The Division for Sustainable Development is calling on social and natural scientists to provide ideas and suggestions for the Global Sustainable Development Report. Inputs will be fully considered in determining key messages and findings of the Report. The aim is to collect a wide range of views from scientists, especially young scientists, representing scientific communities across the world.
For more information, see the Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform.