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Decisions: 6th session of the Commission on Sustainable Development
Commission on Sustainable Development
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15. The Commission reaffirms that, as stated in the Programme of Action for the Further
Implementation of Agenda 21, the current intergovernmental process on freshwater resources
can only be fully fruitful if there is a proved commitment by the international community for
the provision of new and additional financial resources to developing countries, in particular
to the least developed countries, for the goals of this initiative. Such financial resources, from
all sources, need to be mobilized for the development, management, protection and use of
freshwater resources if the broader aims of sustainable development are to be realized,
particularly in relation to poverty eradication. The effective and efficient use of resources
currently allocated to the freshwater sector is also important and could contribute in helping
to increase financial flows from both the public and the private sector.

16. Official development assistance should be provided for and complement, inter alia,
programmes and frameworks for promoting integrated water resources development,
management, protection and use that (a) meet basic needs; (b) safeguard public health;
(c) promote sustainable development and conservation and sustainable use of ecosystems;
and (d) build capacity. Donors, including multilateral donor institutions, should be ready to
continue, or even reinforce, the support for programmes and projects in the water sector that
will contribute to eradicating poverty. In this context, the Commission recalls that all financial
commitments of Agenda 21, particularly those contained in chapter 33, and the provisions
with regard to new and additional resources that are both adequate and predictable need to
be urgently fulfilled. Projects supported by donors should, where appropriate and possible,
become financially self-sustaining. Donors should also continue to support the freshwater
issues that are related to desertification, loss of biodiversity, loss of wetlands, drought, floods
and climate change.

17. The private sector represents one of the growing sources of investment in the water
sector. Local and national water management systems should be designed in ways that
encourage public and private partnerships. It is important to ensure that water management
systems are organized so that they will be sustainable and, once established, can support
themselves. It is important to encourage the participation of the private sector within the
framework of appropriate national policies. The adoption of enabling financial frameworks
contributes to promoting the mobilization of private sector finance. Official development
assistance has an important role in assisting developing countries to adopt appropriate policy
frameworks for water resources management.

18. For developing countries, the role of government regulation in the allocation of
freshwater resources remains important. Resources should be allocated and costs met in an
accountable and transparent manner. Costs should be covered either through cost recovery
or from public sector budgets. Cost recovery could be gradually phased in by water utilities
or the public authorities, taking into account the specific conditions of each country.
Transparent subsidies for specific groups, particularly people living in poverty, are required
in some countries. Governments could benefit from sharing experience in this regard.
Incentives may be necessary to promote land use practices appropriate to local conditions
in order to protect or rehabilitate freshwater resources of particularly sensitive areas, such
as mountainous regions and other fragile ecosystems.

19. The Commission on Sustainable Development:
(a) Invites Governments to strengthen consultative mechanisms between bilateral
and multilateral donors and recipient States aimed at improving or preparing schemes for
the mobilization of financial resources in a predictable manner, for meeting the need of priority
areas based on local and national programmes of action, with a special focus on integrated
water resources development, management, protection and use, while recognizing the needs
of vulnerable groups and people living in poverty;
(b) Calls for initiatives to be undertaken to help identify and mobilize more
resources human, technical (know-how) and financial and take into account the 20/20
initiative, especially in the programme of poverty eradication, in accordance with national
policies and in the light of specific provisions and commitments on resources related to water issues made at recent United Nations conferences.14 A fundamental aim must be to promote
the generation of the resources needed for economically and environmentally sound water
supply and recycling, irrigation, energy, sanitation and water management systems, including
the control of aquatic weeds, especially water hyacinths, and their efficient and effective
deployment;
(c) Invites Governments to allocate sufficient public financial resources for the
provision of safe and sustainable water supply and sanitation to meet basic human needs and
for waste-water treatment. These resources should be complementary to the technical and
financial support of the international community;
(d) Urges Governments, when using economic instruments for guiding the allocation
of water, to take into particular account the needs of vulnerable groups, children, local
communities and people living in poverty, as well as environmental requirements, efficiency,
transparency, equity and, in the light of the specific conditions of each country, at the national
and local levels, the polluter-pays principle. Such instruments need to recognize the special
role of women in relation to water in many societies;
(e) Urges Governments to initiate a review of existing financial support arrangements
in order to enhance their efficiency and effectiveness. Such a review should aim at the
mobilization of financial resources from all sources, particularly international financial
resources, in a predictable manner, based on local and national action plans, with a specific
focus on integrated water resources development, management, use and protection
programmes and policies. In this context, both formal and informal arrangements could have
a role to play. International financial support will continue to be important to the development
of local and national water management systems. Governments, with the technical and
financial support of the international community, need to promote the economic, social and
environmental values provided by ecosystems and examine the short- and long-term cost of
their degradation;
(f) Calls upon the international community to intensify its efforts and to consider new
initiatives, within appropriate existing mechanisms, for mobilizing financial resources to
promote efforts of developing countries in the integrated management, development,
distribution, protection and use of water resources. Particular attention should be given to
the following aspects:
(i) Promoting more effective donor coordination and more effective and creative use
of existing resources;
(ii) Generation of new and additional financial resources from all sources;
(iii) Identification of appropriate sources of direct grants and loans on concessional
terms;
(iv) Quantification of the resources required to meet the needs of developing countries;
(v) Resources contributions by industrialized countries and international financial
institutions, including regional institutions;
(vi) Formulation of financial strategies that include possible partnerships with nongovernmental
organizations and the private sector and the promotion of conditions for
increased private financial flows;
(vii) Strengthening of consultative mechanisms, especially at the subregional and
regional levels, by Governments and the international community aimed at making
freshwater a development priority and at improving dialogue between industrialized
and developing countries in a well-targeted and predictable manner, based on national
action plans, with a special focus on sustainable and integrated water resources
management that recognizes the needs of all stakeholders, especially vulnerable groups
and people living in poverty. This could include exploring the potential of new financial
arrangements.

Follow-up and assessment

20. The Commission on Sustainable Development:
(a) Invites Governments to continue to provide voluntary national communication
or reports on actions they have taken towards the development and implementation of national
strategies and programmes in integrated water resources development, management and
protection. Requests the Secretariat to continue collecting, analysing and disseminating
national information on this implementation and to ensure that data is gender-differentiated
whenever possible. Also requests the Secretariat, in reporting to the Commission, to make
a more comprehensive use of the information already provided by Governments through their
national reports and to promote exchanges of such information and further develop relevant
databases;
(b) Encourages Governments to work together at appropriate levels to improve
integrated water resources management. The overall aim should be to ensure effective
arrangements for cooperation between Governments to promote the implementation of policies
and strategies at the local and national levels. Possibilities should also be identified for joint
projects and missions;
(c) Recognizes the important tasks for United Nations agencies and programmes and
other international bodies in helping developing countries to implement their integrated water
resources development, management and protection programmes and policies. It invites the
Subcommittee on Water Resources of the Administrative Committee on Coordination, as task
manager for chapter 18 of Agenda 21, to make its work more transparent through, inter alia,
regular briefings to Governments, to enhance coordination within the United Nations system
and to accelerate the implementation of chapter 18 by considering action to, inter alia:
(i) Identify gaps or inconsistencies in the implementation of programmes of its
constituent organizations by assessing the main features and effectiveness of the
implementation of those activities and ensure that the mainstreaming of gender
perspectives is appropriately included;
(ii) Increase efficiency in programme delivery and possibilities for joint programming;
(iii) Explore the potential of cooperation arrangements and, where appropriate, take
into account the experience gained in existing programmes in the United Nations
system;
(d) Invites the Secretary-General to submit a report to the Commission, prior to its
eighth session, on progress of the Subcommittee on Water Resources of the Administrative
Committee on Coordination, as task manager of chapter 18 of Agenda 21, on the activities
mentioned in the above paragraph;
(e) Stresses the importance of coordination of policies and activities of the specialized
agencies and other bodies of the United Nations system related to freshwater, including clean
and safe water supply and sanitation, and, given the seriousness of the situation, emphasizes
the need to provide close attention to the effects of disposal of toxic substances, including
arsenic contamination of drinking water supplies, and persistent organic pollutants upon water
resources, as recommended by the Economic and Social Council at its substantive session
of 1997;
(f) Invites the United Nations Environment Programme, in collaboration with other
relevant United Nations bodies, to play a vital role in providing inputs through the provision
of technical and scientific advice on environmental aspects of the sustainable development
of freshwater resources. In the field of freshwater, the Programme could focus on assisting
countries, especially developing countries, in strengthening their ability in this regard, in
technology transfer and environmental institutional strengthening and in responding to
requests for assistance in strengthening integrated river basin management. The potential of
the Global Environment Monitoring System and other relevant global monitoring networks
should be fully utilized. Such activities would provide an effective contribution to the work
of the Commission;
(g) Encourages Governments, in cooperation with relevant organizations, to organize
meetings aimed at identifying problems to be resolved, articulating priorities for action and
exchanging experience and best practices and to facilitate progress in implementing the
present decision. Such meetings are invited to inform the Commission of their conclusions
in order to contribute to its work;
(h) Recognizes the need for periodic assessments of the success of strategic
approaches to the sustainable development, management, protection and use of freshwater
resources in achieving the goals described in chapter 18 of Agenda 21 and for a global picture
of the state of freshwater resources and potential problems;
(i) Invites the Subcommittee on Water Resources of the Administrative Committee
on Coordination, as task manager for chapter 18 of Agenda 21, to arrange the compilation
and publication of such assessments.


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Decision 6/2. Industry and sustainable development*
1. The Commission on Sustainable Development reaffirmed that in order to achieve
sustainable development, Governments, in cooperation with non-State actors, need to
undertake greater efforts to integrate economic, social and environmental goals into industrial
policy and decision-making. Towards this end, Governments need to expand and intensify
cooperation with industry, trade unions and other groups of civil society. The Commission
took note of the Chairman?s summary of the industry segment of its sixth session. The
following recommendations of the Commission are based on the report of the Secretary-
General on industry and sustainable development15 and the report of the Inter-sessional Ad
Hoc Working Group on Industry and Sustainable Development (see annex).
A. Industry and economic development
2. The Commission recognized that industrial policy and responsible entrepreneurship
are vital to sustainable development strategies and should encompass a variety of interrelated
economic, social and environmental objectives, such as the encouragement of an open,
competitive economy, the creation of productive employment and the protection of the
environment.
3. The Commission emphasized that in order to achieve the objectives of sustainable
development, Governments need to integrate economic, social and environmental concerns
in their policy-making and to promote economic growth and international competitiveness
of industry through macroeconomic policies. The Commission agreed that, in order to
stimulate domestic private enterprise, boost economy-wide competitiveness and attract foreign
direct investment, policy reforms should aim at creating an enabling policy environment, inter
alia, through improvements in infrastructure and education, encouragement of research and
development, facilitation of exports and liberalization of domestic markets. In this regard,
the development of small and medium-sized enterprises should receive special attention.
4. The Commission stressed that for developing countries and economies in transition,
foreign direct investment is often an important source of capital, new technologies,
organization and management methods, and access to markets. The Commission also stressed
that to promote foreign direct investment flows to developing countries, in particular to the
least developed among them, greater emphasis should be placed by the United Nations system
on promotional and information-dissemination activities relating to investment opportunities
in the developing countries. In this respect, the programme of the United Nations Industrial
Development Organization on investment promotion has proved to be an effective instrument
for facilitating investment in developing countries and therefore should be strengthened.
5. The Commission emphasized that official development assistance remains a main source
of external funding, particularly for countries in Africa and the least developed countries, and
plays a significant role, inter alia, in capacity-building, infrastructure, poverty eradication
and environmental protection in developing countries, and a crucial role in the least developed
countries.
6. The Commission recognized that industry plays a critical role in technological
innovations and research and development activities, which are crucial for the economic and
social development of any country, as well as in the development, diffusion and transfer of
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16 Report of the World Summit for Social Development, Copenhagen, 6?12 March 1995 (United
Nations publication, Sales No. E.96.IV.8), chap. I, resolution 1, annex I.
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environmentally sound technologies and management techniques, which constitute a key
element of sustainable development.
7. The Commission emphasized that it was important for the achievement of sustainable
development for Governments to develop and maintain an enabling policy framework based
on a sound regulatory foundation complemented with a judicious mix of economic instruments,
voluntary initiatives and agreements and public-private partnerships.
B. Industry and social development
8. The Commission recognized that there is a mutually reinforcing relationship between
social and industrial development, and that industrialization has the potential to promote,
directly and indirectly, a variety of social objectives such as employment creation, poverty
eradication, gender equality, labour standards, and greater access to education and health care.
In this regard, the overriding policy challenge is to promote the positive impacts while limiting
or eliminating the negative impacts of industrial activities on social development. The
Commission noted that improved access to education and health care has, in general, been
associated with the pace of industrialization and recommended that Governments continue
to give them priority.
9. The Commission recognized that industry contributes to social development objectives
through, inter alia, the creation of productive employment, compliance with labour standards,
corporate social initiatives and attention to human resources development and worker welfare.
Industry continues to face such challenges, which can be addressed through better dialogue
with trade unions and Governments.
10. The Commission acknowledged that, in dealing with the problems of industrialization,
social policy has not always been gender neutral. In view of persistent gender disparities in
areas such as income, employment, education and health, Governments, industry, trade unions,
women?s organizations and other organizations of civil society should work together towards
the elimination of discrimination against women.
11. The Commission emphasized that among the central concerns of the international
community should be the growing international income disparities among and within countries
and the risk that some countries and groups might fall deeper into poverty and exclusion. The
World Summit for Social Development provided a strong basis for international cooperation,
including with the business community. In this regard, policies should build on the
Copenhagen Declaration on Social Development.16
C. Industry and environmental protection
12. The Commission noted that, as the world has become more industrialized, there have
been increasing environmental pressures such as harmful emissions and waste, which have
had global, regional or local impacts. These include, at the local level, urban air pollution,
contamination of soils and rivers and land degradation; regionally, acid rain and water and
coastal zone contamination; and globally, climate change, ozone layer depletion, loss of
biodiversity, increased movement of hazardous waste and increased land-based marine
pollution.
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13. The Commission acknowledged that environmental sustainability and industrial
development are mutually supportive, given appropriate technology, institutions, policies
and systems of incentives.
14. The Commission stressed that the overriding task facing Governments is to maximize
the positive influence of industrial activities on economic and social development, while
minimizing the negative impact of production and consumption on the environment. To this
end, Governments should review their regulatory policies and systems of economic incentives
and disincentives and undertake other actions such as capacity-building, environmental data
collection and enforcement that support the environmental protection efforts of industry and
civil society. Governments should encourage the wider dispersion and implementation of
industry?s voluntary initiatives and agreements and sharing of best practices.
15. The Commission called upon industry to increase its efforts, as appropriate, in the areas
of responsible entrepreneurship and employment of various corporate management tools,
including environmental management systems and environmental reporting, to improve its
environmental performance. Governments and industry must work together to develop policies
to ensure that conformance with standards is not too costly or difficult to achieve for
companies in developing countries and for small and medium-sized enterprises.
16. The Commission recognized that eco-efficiency, cost internalization and product policies
are also important tools for making consumption and production patterns more sustainable.
In this regard, attention should be given to studies that propose to improve the efficiency of
resource use, including consideration of a tenfold improvement in resource productivity in
industrialized countries in the long term and a possible factor of four increase in industrialized
countries in the next two or three decades. United Nations Environment Programme/United
Nations Industrial Development Organization Cleaner Production Centres have demonstrated
the compatibility between environmental protection and increased resource productivity, and
the lessons learned in these activities should be implemented as broadly as possible.
D. Future work
17. The Commission recognized the value of the interactive dialogue between
representatives of Governments, industry, trade unions, non-governmental organizations and
international organizations in the industry segment of its sixth session, which focused on four
themes: responsible entrepreneurship, corporate management tools, technology cooperation
and assessment, and industry and freshwater. Similar dialogues should be held in the future,
taking into account that their preparation must take place in the intergovernmental process
and with balanced representation of all major groups from developed and developing
countries.
18. The Commission noted the potential value of a review of voluntary initiatives and
agreements to give content and direction to the dialogue between Governments and the
representatives of industry, trade unions, non-governmental organizations and international
organizations. As a first step, representatives of industry, trade unions and non-governmental
organizations should examine voluntary initiatives and agreements to identify those elements
that can be considered for this review. The Department of Economic and Social Affairs of
the United Nations Secretariat could provide assistance in this process. Special attention
should be given to the balanced involvement in the process of representatives from all major
groups from developed and developing countries. The Secretariat should make the results
of this review available to Governments. The Commission invited the Department, in
cooperation with the United Nations Environment Agency and the United Nations Industrial
Development Organization to examine how voluntary initiatives and agreements could
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17 Report of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, Rio de Janeiro, 3?14
June 1992 (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.93.I.8 and corrigenda), vol. I: Resolutions
adopted by the Conference, resolution 1, annex II.
18 Ibid., annex I.
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contribute to the future work of the Commission and to report on the result of this work to
the Commission at its seventh session.
19. The United Nations Environment Programme is currently undertaking work on the
voluntary commitments and initiatives taken by the financial sector that promote sustainable
development. The work of the financial sector should be further developed. The Commission
underlined the importance of such voluntary commitments and initiatives and invited the
United Nations Environment Programme to report on its work in this area.
Annex
Report of the Inter-sessional Ad Hoc Working Group on
Industry and Sustainable Development
I. Introduction
1. The Inter-sessional Ad Hoc Working Group on Industry and Sustainable Development
met in New York from 2 to 6 March 1998 in preparation for consideration of the issue of
industry and sustainable development by the Commission on Sustainable Development at
its sixth session (New York, 20 April?1 May 1998). Its discussions were based on the
recommendations and proposals for action contained in the relevant reports of the Secretary-
General.15
2. The outcome of the Working Group meeting is not a negotiated text, although its
contents were thoroughly discussed. In accordance with the expert nature of the Working
Group and the functions assigned to it, the present report focuses on key issues and
conclusions and suggests elements and policy options for further consideration and negotiation
during the sixth session of the Commission on Sustainable Development.
II. Industry and sustainable development
A. Background
3. Agenda 2117 and the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development 18provide the
fundamental framework for further policy discussion and action on matters related to industry
and sustainable development. Although the role of business and industry, as a major group,
is specifically addressed in chapter 30, issues related to industry and economic development,
consumption and production patterns, social development and environmental protection cut
across the entirety of Agenda 21, including its section 4, Means of implementation.
4. Poverty eradication is central to sustainable development strategies, and industry has
a key role to play in this respect. Sustainable industrial policy encompasses a variety of
interrelated economic, social and environmental objectives, including the encouragement of
an open, competitive economy, the creation of productive employment in order to provide
sustained increases in household income and social development, and the protection of the
natural environment through the efficient use of resources. In order to achieve the objectives
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of sustainable development, Governments need to integrate economic, social and
environmental concerns into their policy and regulatory frameworks, and industry needs to
promote sustainable development through sustainable consumption and production and
responsible entrepreneurship, in accordance with country-specific conditions.
5. Increasing industrialization and per capita levels of production have led to a
corresponding increase in the impact of industrial activities on the environment and health.
At the local level, industrial emissions contribute to urban air pollution and the contamination
of soil and water. At the regional level, the impact of such emissions includes acid rain, water
contamination and the contamination of coastal zones. The major impact at the global level
includes climate change, depletion of the ozone layer and the loss of biological diversity.
These environmental challenges will be more and more shaped by growing resource and
energy demands, and the issues (like climate change) cannot be dealt with by end-of-pipe
regulation alone. Hence, the promotion of cleaner production and improvements in
environmental performance and environmentally sound technologies and products are
becoming increasingly important. Some businesses and industries have taken significant first
steps to develop, implement and improve their policies and practices to promote sustainable
development. The implementation of environmental management systems and practices in
industry are, therefore, important. The way in which companies are able to respond efficiently
and effectively to these challenges is seen as a cornerstone in the necessary innovation process.
B. General recommendations
6. Further action is needed to adjust policy approaches that have unintended adverse
environmental or social effects and to establish a policy framework that fosters sustainability,
including encouragement to companies of all sizes and in all sectors to integrate sustainable
development into their business strategies, planning and operations. At the macroeconomic
level environmental protection and ?eco-management? can contribute to the modernization
of the economy and to creating and securing jobs in industry.
7. Governments are encouraged to develop enabling policy environments and undertake
reforms that provide more consistent economic and other incentives and disincentives to make
markets work better and encourage business and industry to move faster towards sustainable
development. Some policy instruments used in developed countries might be useful for the
more advanced developing countries. For others at the early stages of industrialization, there
are opportunities to integrate sustainability from the outset. For developing countries,
particularly the least developed countries, further efforts, supported by international
cooperation, will need to be made in order to encourage capacity-building and investment
in sustainable industrial development.
8. Since the role of the private sector has expanded in most economies, effective
sustainable development policies require constructive dialogue and partnerships between
Government at all levels, industry, trade unions and civil society, including women?s
organizations. There is a need to build and extend this dialogue. There are many good
examples of the new partnerships that are required. They include partnerships between
Government and industry to tackle global challenges like climate change, partnerships
between companies in developed and developing countries to create and spread cleaner
technologies and improved environmental management, partnerships at national and local
levels between companies and all of their stakeholders, and increased dialogue between
industry and the United Nations system.
9. Consistent with Agenda 21, the development and further elaboration of national policies
and strategies and integrated approaches, particularly in industrialized countries, are needed
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to encourage changes in unsustainable consumption and production patterns, while
strengthening, as appropriate, international approaches and policies that promote sustainable
consumption patterns on the basis of the principle of common but differentiated
responsibilities, applying the ?polluter pays? principle and encouraging producer
responsibility and greater consumer awareness.
10. Governments, industry and organizations of civil society should, as appropriate, use
the media, advertising, marketing and other means to promote greater producer and consumer
awareness of sustainable development in order to encourage a shift to more sustainable
consumption and production patterns. Industrialized countries should take the lead in this
process.
11. Sustainable development should be encouraged with continuous innovation and the
adoption of environmentally sound technologies to change current production and
consumption patterns. The challenge is to implement measures that will have a significant
long-term impact on preventing and mitigating pollution and resource consumption alongside
continued growth in gross domestic product. Eco-efficiency, cost internalization and policies
for products and services are important tools for making consumption and production patterns
more sustainable.
12. Foreign investment can play a significant and positive role in achieving sustainable
development ? for example, through the diffusion of environmentally sound technologies,
including environmental management techniques and tools, and in capacity-building and
poverty alleviation through employment generation. It can, however, contribute to
environmental problems when undertaken with inadequate regard to environmental, economic
and social consequences. Consideration should be given to an assessment of the implications
for sustainable development of foreign investment.
13. Business and industry should be encouraged to develop and implement voluntary
guidelines and codes of conduct which can help to promote and disseminate best practices
in environmentally and socially responsible entrepreneurship, and to develop further those
that already exist. To be effective, business and industry need to develop and implement such
codes by themselves, for that will ensure their commitment to the process. Equally important,
their credibility with stakeholders requires that the codes stimulate positive action that goes
well beyond ?business as usual?. Therefore, an essential element is transparency in monitoring
and public reporting of progress.
14. Governments at all levels, industry, trade unions and other organizations of civil society,
in particular women?s organizations, should work together towards the elimination of
discrimination against women in employment, education, property ownership and access to
credit and to ensure that women have effective equal access to economic opportunities and
social participation. Governments should ensure that their social and industrial policies are
gender-sensitive.
15. Particular efforts are needed to promote small and medium-sized enterprises and
entrepreneurial potential, in, inter alia, the informal sector in developing countries.
Sustainable development requirements need to be translated into concrete action for small
and medium-sized enterprises. Governments, with the support of the international community,
as appropriate, can develop policy frameworks to support investment, including the provision
of micro-credit, and access to technology know-how and training. Large companies and
transnational corporations can provide support by working through the supply chain, including
local suppliers.
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16. Training should be utilized by all sectors and societies to promote cleaner production.
The training should stress the integration of economic, social and environmental matters as
Government, industry and civil society implement the policies and programmes.
C. Recommendations for Governments
17. Within a supportive international environment, Governments should create an enabling
policy environment in order to encourage domestic private enterprise and economy-wide
competitiveness through improvements in infrastructure and educational, financial and legal
institutions; encourage research and development; and facilitate exports and the liberalization
of domestic markets. These reforms can encourage investment, innovation, diffusion of
technology and more efficient use of resources.
18. Governments should continue to promote the integration of environmental and industrial
policies, with emphasis on the preventive approach. Governments need to adopt policies and
regulations that set clear environmental goals and objectives for industry through strategic
environmental policies at the national and subnational levels. They also need to develop and
promote appropriate policy frameworks to help mobilize the full range of domestic and foreign
resources from all sectors, including industry, in support of sustainable development.
19. Since not all developing countries can attract adequate levels of foreign direct
investment for their industrial development, official development assistance remains a main
source of external funding for them, particularly in Africa and in the least developed countries.
Official development assistance plays a significant role, inter alia, in capacity-building,
infrastructure, poverty alleviation and environmental protection in developing countries, and
a crucial role in the least developed countries.
20. Development strategies should encompass official development assistance and should
include the effective use of all possible means of promoting sustainable development and the
facilitation of private investment, trade, technology transfer, and utilization of science and
technology, tailored to the specific conditions and needs of each country. It is urgent that
measures be taken to foster and improve capacity-building over the long term.
21. While not replacing official development assistance, foreign direct investment offers
developing countries and economies in transition access to additional capital, new
technologies, organization and management methods, and markets, as well as opportunities
to exploit complementarities between domestic and foreign investment. A stable policy
environment is necessary to attract foreign direct investment and to ensure confidence among
domestic entrepreneurs and foreign investors. Ways and means of encouraging foreign direct
investment flows between developing countries should be explored.
22. Governments in developed countries should encourage foreign direct investment to
assist developing countries and economies in transition in their development in a way friendly
to the environment and supportive of sustainable development. The commitment of foreign
investors to sustainable development is required while they pursue their commercial interests.
23. To ensure that such investments are supportive of sustainable development objectives,
it is essential that the national Governments of recipient countries provide appropriate
regulatory frameworks and incentives for private investment, including those that promote
the availability of micro-credit. Therefore, further work should be undertaken on the design
of appropriate policies and measures aimed at promoting long-term investment flows to
developing countries for activities that increase their productive capability and at reducing
the volatility of those flows.
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24. When devising and implementing environmental regulatory frameworks, Governments
should seek to ensure that such frameworks encourage, as appropriate, private sector activities
that promote sustainable development. The traditional method of command and control, based
on effluent and emission standards, should be developed or modified, as appropriate, with
ample participation of industry and civil society, to become an enabling factor and the basis
for a judicious mix of economic instruments, voluntary industry initiatives and public and
private partnerships.
25. There is a need for making existing subsidies more transparent in order to increase
public awareness of their actual economic, social and environmental impacts, and for
reforming or, where appropriate, removing them. Further national and international research
in this area should be promoted in order to assist Governments in identifying and considering
phasing out subsidies that are market-distorting and have socially and environmentally
damaging impacts. Subsidy reductions should take full account of the specific conditions and
the different levels of development of individual countries and should consider potentially
regressive impacts, particularly on developing countries. In addition, it would be desirable
to use international cooperation and coordination to promote the reduction of subsidies where
they have important implications for competitiveness.
26. Governments should encourage the implementation of environmental management
systems. In order to widely disseminate environmental management concepts in small and
medium-sized enterprises, especially in developing countries, the instruments and methods
of environmental management have to be adapted to their specific capacities and needs,
making them easier to apply and less costly. Networks of intermediaries that can assist small
and medium-sized enterprises in improving their environmental performance should be
encouraged.
27. Governments, at the national level, are encouraged to address the issue of occupational
health and safety standards in small and medium-sized enterprises and in industry.
28. Increased efforts are needed by Governments, in cooperation with industry, trade unions
and civil society, to ensure universal compliance by industry, including informal enterprises,
of core labour standards as contained in the Conventions of the International Labour
Organization. Such standards include freedom of association, the right of collective
bargaining, prohibition of forced and child labour, and non-discrimination in employment.
29. Governments can set a good example and create a market for more environmentally
friendly products and services by providing, as appropriate, adequate infrastructure,
establishing goals on procurement that take account of environmental factors and encouraging
all relevant governmental bodies to introduce environmental management systems.
Governments can improve the quality of information on the environmental impact of products
and services and, to that end, encourage the voluntary and transparent use of eco-labelling.
30. Social objectives should be an integral part of sustainable development, and the
overriding social policy challenge for Government and industry is to promote the positive
impacts of industrial activities on social development, while limiting or eliminating the
negative impacts. This can be achieved by various means, in particular through improved
access to education and health care. Governments should give priority to ensuring universal
access to basic education and to expanding access to secondary education. Tax incentives,
for example, may be useful to encourage companies to invest in training and education for
their workers. Governments and civil society should also address the problem of rapidly
expanding labour forces, especially youth labour.
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19 Adopted at the third session of the Conference of the Parties, on 11 December 1997.
22
31. Since the creation of employment plays a pivotal role in the alleviation of poverty,
industrial policies should promote linkages between enterprises in the formal and informal
sectors, including transnational corporations.
32. Governments, where appropriate, should cooperate with industry, trade unions and other
concerned organizations of civil society in expanding, strengthening and ensuring the
sustainability of social security schemes. Governments should also ensure that the benefits
of pension systems are secure and transferable between employers. Moreover, Governments,
in cooperation with industry, should ensure that such coverage is as broad as possible and,
where feasible, based on mandatory worker and employer participation.
33. The fulfilment of greenhouse gas emission reduction targets agreed upon in the Kyoto
Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change19 needs to be
achieved within set time-frames in developed countries. The fulfilment of commitments
assumed by different countries, in accordance with the principle of common but differentiated
responsibilities, is important.
34. Attention should be given to studies that propose to improve the efficiency of resource
use, including consideration of a tenfold improvement in resource productivity in
industrialized countries in the long term and a possible fourfold increase in resource
productivity in industrialized countries in the next two or three decades. Further research is
required to study the feasibility of these goals and the practical measures needed for their
implementation. Industrialized countries will have a special responsibility and must take the
lead.
35. The concept of eco-efficiency should not be a substitute for changes in unsustainable
lifestyles of consumers, and the pursuit of eco-efficiency also requires enhanced efforts to
assist developing countries in their efforts to promote sustainable consumption and production
patterns, by improving access to financial resources and environmentally sound technologies.
36. Voluntary initiatives by all subsectors of industry have been a valuable tool in protecting
the environment. Governments should continue to encourage voluntary initiatives by industry,
in both the formal and informal sectors, including voluntary and transparent codes of conduct,
charters and codes of good practice, and the conclusion of voluntary agreements. Effective
monitoring and follow-up programmes with stakeholder participation are needed, and industry
should provide better and more complete dissemination of information of their voluntary
initiatives. In addition, the assessment of progress made throughout a sector or country needs
to be facilitated by developing a set of relevant indicators and metrics.
37. In order to strengthen domestic technological capabilities, it is useful for Governments
to develop a national science and technology strategy and to support capacity-building to
promote partnerships with industry. Greater cooperation between industry and public research
and development bodies is needed to develop the skill and knowledge base necessary for a
successful domestic technology strategy and the absorption of imported technologies.
38. Technology transfer and cooperation and the development of the human and institutional
capacities to adapt, absorb and disseminate technologies and to generate technical knowledge
and innovations are part of the same process and must be given equal importance.
Governments have an important role to play in providing, inter alia, research and development
institutions with incentives to promote and contribute to the development of institutional and
human capacities.
39. Control and influence over the technological knowledge produced in publicly funded
research opens up the potential for the generation of publicly owned technologies that could
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23
be made accessible to the developing countries and could be an important means for
Governments to catalyse private-sector technology transfers. Proposals for the further study
of the options with respect to those technologies and publicly funded research and
development activities are welcomed.
40. The Governments of developed countries are invited to encourage private-sector
companies in their countries to transfer environmentally sound technologies to developing
countries. Such transfers should be underpinned by matching technical assistance and the
transfer of education and skills, taking into account the unique circumstances and
characteristics of small and medium-sized enterprises.
41. The ongoing process of globalization may bring with it a higher rate of technological
progress and diffusion. Innovations in industry and their diffusion will no doubt be among
the most important mechanisms for progressively delinking economic growth from
environmental degradation. The dynamics of innovation in industry thus deserve careful study
so as to determine what triggers innovation and how innovations are taken up by society.
Studies are also needed on the possible environmental and social effects of innovation.
Policies, including incentives, are needed which can steer innovation and investment in
directions conducive to sustainable development.
D. Recommendations for industry
42. Companies can enable consumers to make more informed choices by providing reliable
and accurate information on the impacts, and where possible, conditions of production and
qualities of products and services, through their marketing and advertising activities,
environmental reporting and improved stakeholder dialogue.
43. Industry and civil society should work with Governments to strengthen secondary,
vocational and advanced education and to ensure that it meets the developmental needs of
society and the economy. This includes fair treatment of employees and constructive training
programmes.
44. Environmentally oriented management should aim at both preventing environmental
damage and encouraging sustainable use of natural resources through, for example, more
efficient use of energy, water and raw materials; the reduction of emissions into the air, water
and soil; the reduction of noise impacts; the reduction of waste; and the development of
environmentally sound products and services. Environmental management systems and
practices suitable to particular circumstances can enable business to control its environmental
impacts and stimulate awareness of sustainability as a key business issue. To maintain and
enhance competitiveness over the longer term, companies need to integrate environmental
and social sustainability into their strategic planning. This includes developing cleaner
products and processes that use resources more efficiently and minimize environmental
impacts.
45. Industry should act to improve its environmental performance through appropriate
implementation of environmental management systems. For example, transnational
corporations should consider setting a time-frame within which to fully implement such
systems. At the same time, Governments and industry must also work together to develop
policies to ensure that compliance with standards is not too costly or difficult to achieve for
companies in developing countries. National certification schemes should be based upon the
principles of transparency and non-discrimination and should not be used as non-tariff trade
barriers.
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46. Large corporations should apply best practice in their own branches, both domestically
and abroad. Companies are encouraged to provide environmentally sound technologies,
supported by appropriate management techniques and training, inter alia, so as to help
companies in other countries, particularly developing countries, to develop and implement
environmentally sound policies. Those companies and corporations should also be proactive
in promoting the implementation of core labour standards of the International Labour
Organization.
47. Chambers of commerce and business organizations in developed and developing
countries should be encouraged to cooperate in the transfer of technology and in the
development of management tools and institutional frameworks for sustainable development.
48. There is a growing trend among a variety of stakeholders to hold industry accountable
and responsible for the environmental impact of its operations and products throughout their
entire life cycle. The industry and business sectors should respond positively to these demands
by continuing to develop voluntary codes of conduct, charters and codes of practices. Industry
and business should observe these codes when operating in developing countries and in
economies in transition, in particular where environmental enforcement is still being
developed.
49. The financial sector has an important role to play in promoting sustainable development.
Voluntary commitments and initiatives taken by the financial sector (banks, savings and
micro-credit institutions, and insurance companies) which promote sustainable development
should be further developed and implemented, and strategies for monitoring progress should
be developed. Since financial institutions play an important role in sustainable development
in developing countries, their policies may include requirements and incentives to stimulate
sustainable development and to report on their progress.
E. Recommendations for the international community
50. The principles of transparency, mutual recognition and non-discrimination, which serve
as building blocks for the multilateral trading system, should also serve as basic principles
in other areas, such as sustainable development. The development of environmental standards,
voluntary codes of conduct and eco-labelling should be viewed as facilitating tools to ensure
the fulfilment of environmental objectives, rather than as necessary elements to be checked
for the achievement and measurement of sustainability.
51. The international community needs to assist developing countries and economies in
transition in their efforts to facilitate their adoption of production technologies that reduce
environmental pressures while, at the same time, allowing them to be more competitive in
international markets. Therefore, there is a real need to disseminate information about
environmentally sound technologies to developing countries on a broader scale. The United
Nations Industrial Development Organization, the United Nations Environment Programme,
the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development and other relevant bodies should
be invited to focus their programmes in order to promote the transfer of environmentally sound
technologies, particularly to small and medium-sized enterprises in developing countries.
52. The international community, working notably through the United Nations Educational,
Scientific and Cultural Organization, the United Nations Industrial Development
Organization, the United Nations Environment Programme, other United Nations bodies
active in the implementation of chapters 30 and 36 of Agenda 21, and non-governmental
organization partners, should strengthen the links between education and industry leading
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25
to sustainable development by assisting developing countries in their national efforts to
strengthen secondary, vocational and advanced education.
53. When promoting measures favouring eco-efficiency, developed countries should pay
special attention to the needs of developing countries, in particular by encouraging positive
impacts, and to the importance of avoiding negative impacts on export opportunities and on
market access for developing countries and, as appropriate, for countries with economies in
transition. Implementation of environmental measures should not result in disguised barriers
to trade.
54. Industrialization is a key element in promoting sustainable development in developing
countries, particularly in Africa, and the least developed countries. It plays an important role
in the efforts of those countries to eradicate poverty, create productive employment and
integrate women into the development process. The business community, especially the small
and medium-sized enterprises, have a particularly important role in enhancing
industrialization. There is a need for the United Nations Industrial Development Organization,
the United Nations Environment Programme and other relevant United Nations bodies to
enhance their activities in developing and implementing sustainable industrial development
strategies, including taking into account the implementation of the Second Industrial Decade
for Africa.
55. The international community, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization
and other relevant United Nations bodies are encouraged to provide appropriate financial
and technical support to enable industries in developing countries to comply with national
environmental goals and objectives through strategic environmental policies at the national
and subnational levels.
56. Foreign direct investment can contribute to the achievement of sustainable development.
To promote foreign direct investment flows to developing countries, in particular to the least
developed among them, greater emphasis should be placed by the United Nations system on
promotional and information-dissemination activities relating to investment opportunities
in the developing countries.
57. There is a need for a further assessment of the implications of foreign investment for
sustainable development, building on past work and taking into account relevant current
activities. Such an assessment should take into account all existing relevant activities and
processes and build on work undertaken in preparation for the fifth session of the Commission
on Sustainable Development. The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
should be invited to investigate the issue and report the results to the Commission at its
seventh session. Furthermore, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
and the World Trade Organization should report on their relevant activities.
58. Multilateral financial institutions, through their investment agreements, programmes
and projects, should contribute to sustainable development and the use of environmentally
sound technologies.
59. Any negotiations on multilateral investment agreements should be participatory,
transparent and non-discriminatory. The negotiations of these agreements should include the
specific social, economic and environmental needs of developing countries. A multilateral
agreement on investments is currently being negotiated in the Organisation for Economic
Cooperation and Development. Without prejudice to the clear understanding in the World
Trade Organization that future negotiations, if any, regarding a multilateral agreement on
investments will take place only after an explicit consensus decision, future agreements on
investments should take into account the objectives of sustainable development, and when
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20 See Report of the World Summit for Social Development, Copenhagen, 6?12 March 1995 (United
Nations publication, Sales No. E.96.IV.8).
21 Ibid., chap. I, resolution 1, annex I.
26
developing countries are parties to those agreements, special attention should be given to their
needs for investment.
60. Full implementation of the recommendations of the World Summit for Social
Development20 would effectively address growing international income disparities among
and within countries and the risk that some countries and groups might fall deeper into poverty
and exclusion. Policies are needed to implement the commitments expressed in the
Copenhagen Declaration on Social Development21 to, inter alia, expand productive
employment, reduce unemployment, enhance social protection and reduce the vulnerability
of the poorest groups. The International Labour Organization has a central role in monitoring
the implementation of relevant labour standards and in stimulating patterns of economic
growth that provide job opportunities. Concerted action by interested countries for the
implementation of the 20/20 initiative is making a significant contribution to some developing
countries, particularly the least developed.
61. Development of policies to implement the outcome of the Fourth World Conference
on Women, which reaffirmed the advances made at the United Nations Conference on
Environment and Development and emphasized the need to mainstream a gender perspective
into the development agenda, is of great importance.
62. Further work should be undertaken at the international level to develop criteria to
improve corporate environmental reporting. The United Nations Environment Programme
and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development could take the lead in that
respect, in cooperation with other organizations, as appropriate.
63. Reflecting the sectoral focus on freshwater, the United Nations Environment
Programme, working jointly with other relevant United Nations bodies, should be invited to
cooperate with the relevant industry sectors to develop a voluntary statement of business-led
commitment on the protection and sustainable management of water resources.
64. The secretariats of international conventions on the environment should consider the
need to include technology and other technical information in a ?clearinghouse? to facilitate
fulfilling the commitments of the conventions.
65. Concern was expressed regarding the impact of the current intellectual property regime
and the need for protection of intellectual property rights in the transfer of environmentally
sound technologies. The international community should promote, facilitate and finance, as
appropriate, access to and transfer of environmentally sound technologies and the
corresponding know-how, in particular to developing countries, on favourable terms,
including concessional and preferential terms, as mutually agreed, taking into account the
need to protect intellectual property rights as well as the special needs of developing countries
for the implementation of Agenda 21. Current forms of cooperation involving the public and
private sectors of developing and developed countries should be built upon and expanded.
It is important to identify barriers and restrictions to the transfer of publicly and privately
owned environmentally sound technologies with a view to reducing such constraints, while
creating specific incentives, fiscal and otherwise, for the transfer of such technologies.
66. South-South cooperation is an important instrument for facilitating the diffusion of
technology and industry and as a complement to North-South relations. South-South
cooperation could be further strengthened through such innovative mechanisms as trilateral
arrangements. Such mechanisms should be supported as an important means of achieving
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27
sustainable development and the alleviation of poverty. The United Nations Environment
Programme, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization and other relevant
United Nations bodies should be invited to sustain and strengthen their programmes that
promote the transfer of environmentally sound technologies, particularly to small and mediumsized
industries in developing countries. Regional cooperation should also be encouraged
and strengthened.
F. Future work
67. Relevant international organizations should study the different voluntary schemes that
have been formulated with regard to industry, the effects of the technologies used to cope with
problems and the prospects for introducing them elsewhere. It is important that, where
necessary, they should create a framework to support the strengthening of efforts by the
industry side.
68. The Commission should consider, with industry, how follow-up to the dialogue
established with industry might be maintained and developed to ensure effective and
continuing contributions from industry to the Commission?s work programme. In so doing,
the Commission should also consider how industry, through its international and sectoral
organizations, should be consulted and associated with the follow-up to that dialogue. The
Commission should, in cooperation with other relevant intergovernmental bodies, industry,
trade unions, non-governmental organizations and other major groups, establish a process
to review the effectiveness of voluntary initiatives intended to promote sustainable and
equitable business practices. It is also important that the Commission continue to address
the role of industry in sustainable development in the context of different sectoral and crosssectoral
themes allocated for its future sessions. The result of the work undertaken in the
follow-up to the Joint Statement on Common Interests by the Secretary-General of the United
Nations and the International Chambers of Commerce could be taken into account in further
dialogue with industry in the Commission.
69. Governments and industry should be encouraged to improve, in general, their reporting
of progress in voluntary initiatives and environmental protection and, in particular, as a
follow-up to the industry segment at the sixth session of the Commission. Such reporting and
follow-up activities should have the active involvement of the Commission, the United Nations
Environment Programme, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the
United Nations Industrial Development Organization and others ? for example, the
International Chambers of Commerce and the World Business Council on Sustainable
Development, at the international level, and trade associations at the subsectoral level. The
involvement of trade associations at the subsectoral level may be useful for ensuring better
reporting in key subsectors such as energy and transport, mining, cement, paper and pulp,
iron and steel, and chemicals. Discussion of changing consumption and production patterns
at the seventh session could provide the first opportunity for such enhanced voluntary
reporting.


[%doctitle%]

Decision 6/4. Review of the implementation of the Programme of Action for the
Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States

A. Overall considerations
1. The Commission on Sustainable Development takes note of the reports of the Secretary-
General on progress in the implementation of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable
Development of Small Island Developing States27 and on development of a vulnerability index
for small island developing States.28
2. The Commission recalls the decision of the General Assembly at its nineteenth special
session on the modalities for the full and comprehensive review of the Programme of Action
for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States.29 In particular, the
Commission notes the importance of the two-day special session to be convened immediately
preceding the fifty-fourth session of the General Assembly, in 1999, for an in-depth
assessment and appraisal of the implementation of the Programme of Action, as reaffirmed
in General Assembly resolution 52/202 of 18 December 1997.
3. The Commission urges small island developing States to continue and enhance their
preparations for the seventh session of the Commission and the 1999 special session, and
calls upon the international community, United Nations agencies and intergovernmental bodies
to provide assistance to small island developing States for practical and concrete actions.
Noting the work already begun by the small island developing States and regional
organizations and institutions in that regard, the Commission invites the international
community, United Nations agencies and intergovernmental bodies to support regional
initiatives and to collaborate in partnership with the regional organizations and institutions
to speed up preparations for the review.
4. In the light of paragraph 24 of the Programme for the Further Implementation of Agenda
21,30 the Commission encourages all small island developing States to put in place national
sustainable development strategies that take into account the links between economic, social
and environmental indicators and policies on an ongoing basis, and invites bilateral donors
and United Nations agencies and organizations, as well as the United Nations Development
Programme and the World Bank, to join in the promotion of coordinated capacity-building
programmes to support the development and implementation of national, subregional and
regional strategies. The implementation of strategies for sustainable development will be
primarily the responsibility of small island developing States, with the essential support of
the international community. The Commission urges proper consideration of the need for
capacity-building to develop and implement strategies for sustainable development at the
proposed donors? conference.
5. The Commission reaffirms the important coordinating role played by the Department
of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat and its efforts to assist small
island developing States with the review process, and calls on the Department to remain
actively involved in the preparatory process leading up to the special session, including
effective coordination with all relevant sectors of the international community in taking any
necessary measures to provide support and assistance to small island developing States.
6. The donors? conference on small island developing States to be held in early 1999 is
welcomed as a useful forum for assistance in the pursuit of small island States? sustainable
development objectives, and the Commission encourages all small island States to fully utilize
the donors? conference to that end. The Commission recommends that the envisaged donors?
conference consider proposed project portfolios that reflect progress to implement the relevant
components of the Programme of Action. The international donor community is urged to
engage actively with small island developing States during the conference to achieve realistic
and positive outcomes and concrete assistance for all small island developing States, including
the sharing of updated information on current donor activities in support of the sustainable
development of small island developing States. The Secretary-General?s preparations for the
donors? conference will also need to take account of and work with ongoing national and
regional round-table and consultative groups.
7. The Programme of Action recognizes that small island developing States are a special
case for both environment and development because they are ecologically fragile and
vulnerable, and because they face particular constraints in their efforts to achieve sustainable
development. In that regard, the Commission recalls that the international community
reaffirmed its commitment to the implementation of the Programme of Action at the nineteenth
special session of the General Assembly.29 It was also noted at the special session that the
considerable efforts being made at the national and regional levels need to be supplemented
by effective financial support from the international community, and by facilitating the transfer
of environmentally sound technologies in accordance with paragraph 34.14 (b) of Agenda
21.31 The Commission notes that the support of the international community is vital. The 1999
overall review of the implementation of the Programme of Action should include an
assessment of changes in the financial resource flows to small island developing States, both
overall and by sector, including private as well as public resources. That review will help
to determine whether the international community is providing effective means, including
adequate, predictable, new and additional resources for the implementation of the Programme
of Action in accordance with chapter 33 of Agenda 21.32
8. The Commission calls upon national Governments, or regional intergovernmental
organizations, as appropriate, to help ensure effective coordination of donor and recipient
government efforts, which is a basic prerequisite for successful development assistance.

B. Climate change and sea level rise
9. The Commission recalls the well-recognized vulnerability of small island developing
States to global climate change, and the likelihood that accompanying sea level rise will have
severe and negative effects on the environment, biological diversity, economy and
infrastructures of small island developing States and on the health and welfare of their peoples.
It recognizes that the ability of small island developing States to respond to the threat of
climate change is hampered by the lack of institutional, scientific and technical capacity, as
well as by the lack of financial resources.
10. The Commission recognizes the need to strengthen the response capability of small
island developing States by education, training and public awareness-raising, and through
regional and international cooperation. The Commission urges the international community
to commit adequate financial and technical resources and assistance to help small island
developing States in their ongoing efforts at the national and regional levels to build effective
response measures, and to strengthen their institutional and human resources capacity to cope
with the effects of climate change and sea level rise. The Commission calls on the international
community to commit appropriate and additional support for the regional organizations and
institutions to strengthen their effectiveness, in particular in support for ongoing regional
assessments of probable environmental changes and impacts, mitigation and adaptation
strategies; development and dissemination of guidelines for coastal protection and
management as well as in other relevant areas; use and substitution of new and renewable
sources of energy; and in the capacity-building programmes of the regional organizations and
institutions.
11. The Commission notes that climate change will also have socio-economic consequences
for small island developing States, and encourages them, in collaboration with regional
organizations and institutions, to undertake integrated assessment studies of the effects of
global warming and sea level rise on socio-economic issues, including population
concentration and location infrastructure, food security, and effects on human health and
culture.
12. The Commission notes that there is a critical need to further scientific and technical
studies and research on the climate change phenomenon and its impacts in relation to small
island developing States, and calls on the international community to continue to undertake
and to assist small island developing States in such studies and research.
13. The Commission welcomes the adoption and the opening for signature of the Kyoto
Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, and urges the
international community, and in particular Annex 1 Parties to the Convention, to become
Parties to the Kyoto Protocol as soon as possible in order to facilitate its early entry into force.

C. Management of wastes
14. The Commission notes the difficulties and constraints confronting small island
developing States in the management of wastes and in their efforts to minimize and prevent
pollution. The Commission is concerned that significant work is needed at all levels to
strengthen the capacities of small island developing States and to implement the actions,
policies and measures identified in the Programme of Action. Since current waste disposal
problems and issues present immediate challenges to island communities, the Commission
calls on the international community to support the efforts of small island developing States
in the development of effective institutional capacity to cope with those issues.
15. The Commission takes note that one of the main obstacles for small island developing
States is the lack of an integrated or comprehensive approach to waste management strategies,
and encourages Governments of small island developing States to focus appropriate priority
on building integrated and environmentally sound waste management strategies and policies
that involve all sectors and industries.
16. The Commission recognizes the ongoing work that is being undertaken by the United
Nations system and by regional organizations and institutions in this process, and supports
the continuation of such work in an integrated manner across small island developing States
regions. Noting the important role played by the regional bodies in developing and
coordinating regional waste management programmes, which often provide the framework
for national action, the Commission encourages regional cooperation within respective small
island developing States regions for the establishment of regional coordinating mechanisms
for waste management in those regions where none currently exist, and calls on the
international community and the United Nations system to continue to provide appropriate
support for those efforts.
17. Noting that waste and pollution from ships, in particular the potential for major oil spills,
represent an important concern for small island developing States in view of their
consequences for the marine and coastal environment and biological diversity, the
Commission proposes that the international community, in collaboration with regional
organizations and institutions, provide effective support for international and regional
initiatives to protect small island developing States regions from ship-borne wastes and
pollution, including the development of facilities for receiving ship-borne waste in ports. The
Commission calls upon all countries to adhere to and enforce existing International Maritime
Organization regulations.
18. The Commission urges small island developing States to give early consideration to
becoming Parties to important international agreements that cover waste management and
disposal, such as the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of
Hazardous Waste and Their Disposal, as well as relevant regional agreements, such as the
Waigani Convention to Ban the Importation of Hazardous and Radioactive Wastes and to
Control the Transboundary Movement of Hazardous Wastes in the South Pacific Region.
19. The Commission calls on the international community, in particular the United Nations
system and the donor community, to continue to support small island developing States? efforts
in this area, in particular in the development of sound waste management infrastructure,
including through financial resources and transfer of environmentally sound technologies;
building adequate legislative frameworks; and the strengthening of institutional capacity.

D. Freshwater resources
20. The Commission notes that for small island developing States, the conservation and
sustainable management of freshwater resources is fundamentally dependent on sound
knowledge and understanding of the water resources potential, and that there is a vital link
to the management of coastal and marine resources and waste.
21. The lack of an adequate knowledge base and ongoing monitoring programmes, often
compounded by the small size, remoteness, physical structure and rapid urbanization of small
island developing States, exacerbates difficulties in management and adequate supply of
freshwater resources, particularly in the smaller islands and coral atoll communities. The
Commission encourages small island developing States, with the vital support of the
international community, to establish and strengthen, as appropriate, geographic information
system (GIS)-based data collection, storage, analysis and retrieval systems, including
monitoring programmes, and appropriate institutional frameworks, including legislation and
national coordinating mechanisms for the management of freshwater and groundwater
resources, and to give high priority to the immediate development and implementation of
appropriate national water action plans. The Commission notes the importance of the World
Meteorological Organization?s World Hydrological Cycle Observing System, in particular
the Caribbean Hydrological Cycle Observing System.
22. The Commission encourages small island developing States to develop an effective
integrated approach to freshwater management, involving the full collaboration of all
interested stakeholders, in particular women, to ensure the sustainable utilization of water
resources, through appropriate demand management policies, including pricing. This should
include cross-sectoral planning and cooperation between relevant sectors and industries, such
as land and waste management, tourism, and industrial and other sectors, as well as the active
participation of the private sector and local communities. The Commission encourages
Governments of small island developing States to prioritize public awareness programmes
in efforts to promote environmentally sustainable use of freshwater and coastal waters.
23. The Commission notes the importance of regional and interregional cooperation on
freshwater issues, and recommends greater cooperation and exchange of technical information,
monitoring and modelling methodologies, and expertise within and among small island
developing States regions in further efforts to promote sound water management programmes
for the benefit of small island developing States. The international community is urged to
support the efforts of small island developing States, including the implementation of
GIS-based information and data systems and training programmes for key personnel.
24. Noting the ongoing work of United Nations agencies, in particular the United Nations
Environment Programme, the United Nations Development Programme and the World Bank,
in their assistance programmes to small island developing States within the context of
implementation of the Programme of Action, the Commission encourages the continuation
of those efforts in conjunction with the regional organizations and institutions. The
Commission calls on the international community to continue to provide support for regional
and national efforts to promote sound water resources assessment and monitoring procedures,
demand management and policy frameworks, including the transfer and development of
appropriate and cleaner production technologies for small island developing States.

E. Land resources
25. Small island developing States face special constraints in the management of land
resources, particularly of agricultural, forestry and mineral resources. The Commission notes
the efforts made so far at all levels in addressing the key issues identified in the Programme
of Action, and notes in particular the significant gaps that remain in many areas, including
in the knowledge base and understanding of the various land-based resources potential.
Recognizing the environmental and cost impacts of land use on other sectors, such as water
and forest resources, the Commission encourages small island developing States to implement
a comprehensive and integrated approach to land-use management, involving all sectors,
especially those at the community level and relevant stakeholders, in the process.
26. The Commission encourages small island developing States to prioritize institutional
strengthening and capacity-building measures at the national and regional levels, including
the development of national and regional legislative frameworks and sustainable long-term
land management plans. It is essential that those be developed from the basis of sound
knowledge and proper understanding of resources. In that respect, the Commission calls on
the international community to continue to support the efforts of small island developing
States, including through the provision of technical assistance and transfer of appropriate
technologies for sustainable agriculture, forestry and mineral development practices and
environmental impact assessments. Small island developing States are encouraged to create
appropriate environment and resource databases, including GIS, which would be an invaluable
basis for all aspects of land-use planning and management, including soil erosion control,
to minimize environmental degradation, and to continue their efforts for public awareness
programmes at all levels of society on the benefits of a sustainable approach to land-use
practices. The international community is urged to support the efforts of small island
developing States, including the implementation of GIS-based information and data systems
and training programmes for key personnel.
27. The Commission notes the important role played by United Nations agencies and other
intergovernmental organizations in promoting an improved approach to land-use management
in small island developing States. The Commission calls on the international community to
help to strengthen the ability of existing regional institutions to assist small island developing
States in improving their land-use management. Where effective regional institutions do not
exist, consideration should be given to establishing such institutions with the assistance of
the international community.

F. Biodiversity resources
28. The Commission takes note of the uniqueness and extreme fragility of biological
diversity, both terrestrial and marine, in small island developing States, and in the light of
their capacity constraints, of the disproportionate responsibility facing small island developing
States in the conservation of those biological resources. It acknowledges the necessity for
further action at all levels to realize the full implementation of the relevant parts of the
Programme of Action and the Convention on Biological Diversity.
29. Noting that a lack of appropriately qualified and trained personnel is a significant
obstacle to the vital management of those natural resources, the Commission encourages small
island developing States to set a high priority on national technological and human capacitybuilding
within strong institutional frameworks to address that imbalance. Small island
developing States are encouraged to put in place effective conservation measures for the
protection of biological diversity, with particular emphasis on management and effective
monitoring and control of existing activities that may have serious environmental
consequences, such as deforestation, unsustainable agricultural practices and overfishing.
30. The Commission notes the importance of regional cooperation in the conservation of
biological diversity, and encourages small island developing States to develop strong national,
regional and interregional networks for cooperation at all levels of biodiversity conservation,
including the exchange of data and expertise. Noting ongoing regional programmes in some
small island developing States for the designation of conservation areas, the Commission urges
those small island developing States that have not done so to designate and develop terrestrial
and marine protected areas at an early stage for the conservation of biological diversity with
the goal of long-term ecological sustainability.
31. The Commission notes ongoing work and programmes currently being implemented
by small island developing States and by the international and regional organizations, and
urges the international community to continue to provide support to small island developing
States for national and regional capacity-building in their efforts for the conservation and
sustainable use of those important natural resources. In particular, the Commission
recommends that international support include technical assistance in the development of
legislative and regulatory frameworks, technology transfer and appropriate training
programmes. International support should also include technical assistance in the development
of measures to establish intellectual property rights within the context of protection of
biodiversity resources, and the Commission notes the development of programmes to assist
developing countries in this area.
32. Given the important role of small island developing States as custodians of a significant
proportion of the world?s biological diversity, the Commission stresses the importance of
enabling small island developing States to participate in the global negotiation processes on
biological diversity. In that regard, the Commission notes the significance of the Trust Fund
under the Convention on Biological Diversity in supporting the participation of developing
countries, including small island developing States.
G. National institutions and administrative capacity
33. The Commission notes that the process of building institutional and administrative
capacity for the effective achievement of sustainable development is a complex process, and
that for small island developing States, efforts have been hampered by a severe lack of
financial and technical resources and skills. The Commission urges the international
community to assist small island developing States in strengthening their national institutional
frameworks, including ? where they do not exist ? the establishment, with adequate staff and
resources, of national coordinating mechanisms for the coordination of sustainable
development policies and action plans.
34. The Commission encourages small island developing States that have not done so to
enact the necessary legislative and administrative frameworks that will provide the basis of
their national strategies and activities for sustainable development, including enhanced
inter-agency cooperation and effective integration of environmental considerations in
economic decision-making, and calls on the international community to assist their efforts
in building national capacity through effective institutional and administrative reforms.
35. The Commission recognizes that small island developing States suffer from a lack of
adequately skilled human resources. It also notes the importance of a highly skilled and
effectively trained human resources base in the effective implementation and enforcement
of sustainable development policies and measures. The Commission therefore calls on the
international community and the United Nations system to continue to provide concrete
assistance to small island developing States by providing appropriate training opportunities
for both men and women and capacity-building programmes at all levels, such as the United
Nations Development Programme Capacity 21 programme, to enable effective national
implementation of sustainable development strategies, especially in the context of the
Programme of Action.
36. The Commission encourages regional and subregional cooperation in this area, in
particular in the sharing of information and expertise on national institutional and
administrative capacity-building for the benefit of small island developing States. The
Commission calls on the international community to continue their support for the activities
of the regional organizations and institutions, including through the provision of adequate
financial resources.
37. The Commission expresses concern at current trends in the levels of external assistance
for small island developing States in national institutions and administrative capacity, and
appeals to the international donor community to provide assistance to small island developing
States at levels necessary to support the implementation of the Programme of Action.

H. Regional institutions and technical cooperation
38. The Commission recognizes the necessity for regional organizations and institutions
to play a strong and effective role in the implementation of the Programme of Action in small
island developing States regions. Small island developing States are encouraged to increase
their cooperation and support for regional organizations and institutions. The Commission
notes that effective programme delivery will be enhanced through the continued clear
identification of national priorities. The Commission notes that the work of existing regional
organizations and institutions may need to be strengthened or supplemented where gaps are
identified.
39. The Commission encourages existing regional organizations and institutions to continue
their efforts to enhance their own effectiveness and delivery of services, including through
focused and sustainable outcomes, increased regional and subregional cooperation and joint
sharing of activities, and calls on the international community to support those efforts. The
Commission calls on the regional organizations and institutions to enact appropriate screening
measures before programme delivery to ensure that their work programmes and activities
realistically target the needs and priorities of small island developing States. The Commission
also invites regional organizations to monitor programme effectiveness.
40. The Commission views with concern the absence of permanent regional coordinating
mechanisms in some regions of small island developing States, and invites States concerned
to identify the most appropriate and effective means for addressing that situation.

I. Science and technology
41. The Commission recognizes the lack of skilled and qualified scientific and technical
personnel in small island developing States owing to small populations and lack of adequate
educational and training facilities, and encourages small island developing States to accord
high priority to science and technical education opportunities and programmes at all levels
of development, including the strengthening of support for national and regional educational
institutions. It would be desirable for small island developing States to collaborate at the
regional and subregional levels to share resources and information, including traditional and
indigenous knowledge, in the development of sound networks among scientific personnel.
Small island developing States are also encouraged to promote a comprehensive approach
and to support the strengthened linkages between educational and research institutions and
all other sectors, and to actively engage the private sector in support for science development.
42. The Commission urges the international community to enhance international cooperation
in the development and promotion of relevant environmentally sound technologies applicable
to small island developing States, and ? where appropriate ? to make that a component of
regional and international projects. The international community is encouraged to take
necessary steps to facilitate the transfer of appropriate technologies to small island developing
States, wherever appropriate, and to actively assist small island developing States in
establishing regional centres for capacity-building and training. Noting the measures
undertaken by the United Nations agencies in assisting small island developing States with
the development of scientific resources, the international community and regional
organizations and institutions are urged to take necessary measures for supporting small island
developing States to implement active and effective science educational programmes.
43. The regional organizations and institutions are encouraged to better promote appropriate
science and technology training programmes at the community level in small island developing
States, and to share information, including the establishment and maintenance of information
and databases on new and innovative technologies appropriate to small island developing
States. Furthermore, regional organizations and institutions are encouraged to develop and
deploy information systems using appropriate technologies, such as remotely sensed data,
GIS and the Internet/Intranet, as the delivery mechanism.
J. Human resources development
44. The limited human resources and other constraints facing small island developing States
and the difficulties that those constraints exert on their sustainable development objectives
are recognized. The Commission acknowledges the efforts by small island developing States
and the progress made, and encourages them to continue to accord high priority to the
comprehensive development of a strong and effective human resources base in all fields and
across all sectors, giving particular attention to building health standards and care,
development of education with specific environmental components and awareness-raising,
the empowerment of women, and the provision of adequate training opportunities for all
sectors. The establishment of incentive measures would help to retain key personnel in the
public sector. Human resources development is an essential component in building the
institutional capacity of small island developing States for delivering sustainable development.
45. The Commission calls on regional organizations and institutions to enhance their support
for small island developing States in the area of human resources development by specifically
targeting the human resources needs of small island developing States in regional development
programmes, including through the provision of practical, effective and specific training
opportunities. The regional organizations and institutions are urged to assist small island
developing States in systematically identifying their needs and priorities and to give adequate
effect to those needs in project planning for development. Greater regional and subregional
cooperation is encouraged for the joint sharing of resources, technologies and expertise, as
well as at bilateral and multilateral levels.
46. The Commission notes the work undertaken by United Nations agencies,
intergovernmental organizations and donors to address human resources needs of small island
developing States in their funds and programmes, and invites them to continue to give priority
to human resources development.
47. The Commission expresses concern at current trends in the levels of external assistance
for small island developing States in human resources development, and appeals to the
international donor community to provide assistance to small island developing States at levels
necessary to support implementation of the Programme of Action.
48. The Commission recognizes the importance of the Small Island Developing States
Technical Assistance Programme and the Small Island Developing States Information
Network in the overall implementation of the Programme of Action, and noting the ongoing
efforts of the United Nations Development Programme to operationalize the two programmes,
encourages the continuation of those efforts, in cooperation with Governments of small island
developing States. The Commission further notes that the unavailability or insufficiency of
financial resources is a main obstacle to the full and early operationalization of those
programmes, especially of the Information Network, and invites the relevant organizations
and the international community to provide support for their proper development.

K. Vulnerability index
49. The Commission recalls that a vulnerability index that takes account of the constraints
arising from small size and environmental fragility, as well as the incidence of natural disasters
on a national scale, and the consequent relationship of those constraints to economic
vulnerability, would assist in defining the vulnerability of small island developing States and
in identifying the challenges to their sustainable development. The Commission notes the
progress made on the index to date.
50. The Commission takes note of the report of the ad hoc expert group meeting on
vulnerability indices for small island developing States,33 and of its conclusion that as a group,
small island developing States are more vulnerable than other groups of developing countries.
51. The Commission recalls General Assembly resolutions 52/202 and 52/210 of 18
December 1997, as well as resolution 51/183 of 16 December 1996, in which the Assembly
requested the Committee for Development Planning,34 at its thirty-second session, to formulate
its views and recommendations on the report to be prepared by the Secretary-General on the
vulnerability index for small island developing States, and to submit those views to the
General Assembly at its fifty-third session, through the Economic and Social Council, and
to make the information available to the Commission. The Commission looks forward to the
report of the Committee.
52. The Commission calls on the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development,
the United Nations Environment Programme, the regional commissions, the Department of
Economic and Social Affairs and other relevant bodies of the United Nations system, as well
as other relevant actors, to accord priority to the continuation of the quantitative and analytical
work on the vulnerability of small island developing States, in keeping with the provisions
of the Programme of Action and General Assembly resolutions 52/202 and 52/210.


[%doctitle%]

Decision 6/3. Transfer of environmentally sound technology, capacity-building,
education and public awareness and science for sustainable development

1. The Commission on Sustainable Development:

(a) Takes note of the report of the Secretary-General22 and related background
documents dealing with the transfer of environmentally sound technology, capacity-building,
education and public awareness, and science for sustainable development;
(b) Recognizes that the transfer of environmentally sound technology, capacitybuilding,
education and public awareness, and science for sustainable development are critical
elements of a national enabling environment necessary to achieve sustainable development,
which includes economic and social development and environmental protection;
(c) Reaffirms the importance it attaches to the two overarching themes, eradication
of poverty and sustainable consumption and production patterns, for the programme of work
of the Commission, adopted at the nineteenth special session of the General Assembly;
(d) Recalls that the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development23 and the
General Assembly, at its nineteenth special session, recognized that poverty eradication is
essential for sustainable development; reaffirms the urgent need for the timely and full
implementation of all the relevant commitments, agreements and targets already agreed upon
since the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development by the international
community, including the United Nations system and international financial institutions; and,
in this context, notes the efforts to achieve the above targets as well as the target to reduce
by one half by 2015 the proportion of people in extreme poverty;24
(e) Reaffirms that renewed commitment and political will for mobilizing national
and international financial sources of public funds, including official development assistance,
and encouraging private investment in all these areas is urgently required, particularly for
developing countries, if they are to meet their needs for the transfer of environmentally sound
technology, capacity-building, education development and public awareness and scientific
capabilities;
(f) Encourages the greater use of public and market-based policy instruments and
incentives to promote better management of human and natural resources and the development
of national capacities to more effectively develop, adapt, integrate and use new technologies;
(g) Welcomes the trend demonstrated in each of the areas towards greater public
participation and decentralization, including broader civil society consultations, citizen
empowerment and increasing public/private partnership and networks, resulting in more
demand-driven efforts at capacity-building, education and public awareness, science
development and transfer of environmentally sound technology;
(h) Recognizes the special needs, skills and experience of girls and women, youth,
indigenous people and local communities, as well as vulnerable and marginalized groups,
in all areas of capacity-building, education and training, science and the use of
environmentally sound technology and stresses the need to ensure their equal access to
educational and capacity-building opportunities and greater involvement in decision-making
at all levels;
(i) Encourages Governments that have not already done so to elaborate appropriate
policies and plans related to the transfer of environmentally sound technology, capacitybuilding,
education and public awareness and science for sustainable development and ensure
that they are fully integrated into national sustainable development strategies and programmes
of regional and subregional cooperation.

A. Transfer of environmentally sound technology

2. The Commission on Sustainable Development:
(a) Recalls that Agenda 2125 and the Rio Declaration 23 provide a fundamental
framework for actions on matters related to the transfer of environmentally sound technologies,
cooperation and capacity-building;
(b) Welcomes the initiatives of the Governments of the Republic of Korea and the
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to organize inter-sessional meetings
on issues relevant to technology transfer, cooperation and capacity-building;
(c) Recognizes that the objectives of sustainable development require continuous
technological innovation and the widespread adoption, transfer and diffusion of
environmentally sound technologies, including know-how and organizational and managerial
procedures, as well as equipment, and that the development of human and institutional
capacities to adapt, absorb and upgrade technologies, as well as to generate technological
knowledge, is essential for technology transfer, management and diffusion;
(d) Notes that public-private partnerships offer a means of increasing access to, and
transfer of, environmentally sound technologies;
(e) Recognizes that the creation of enabling environments at all levels provides a
platform to support the development and use of environmentally sound technologies, and in
this regard:
(i) The design of legal and policy frameworks that are conducive to long-term
sustainable development objectives is a key element of this environment;
(ii) Governments should try to facilitate the transfer of environmentally sound
technologies by creating a policy environment that is conducive to technology-related
private sector investments and long-term sustainable development objectives;
(f) Encourages Governments and industry to work together to build capacity in the
developing countries for using and maintaining environmentally sound technologies, taking
into account that:
(i) Financing programmes for small and medium-sized enterprises, including microcredit
initiatives, are very important;
(ii) Education and training must also be key priorities in national efforts to develop
operating and maintenance skills in the use of environmentally sound technologies;
(g) Calls for the urgent fulfilment of all the commitments of the United Nations
Conference on Environment and Development concerning concrete measures for the transfer
of environmentally sound technologies to developing countries. The international community
should promote, facilitate and finance, as appropriate, access to and transfer of
environmentally sound technologies and the corresponding know-how, in particular to
developing countries, on favourable terms, including concessional and preferential terms,
as mutually agreed, taking into account the need to protect intellectual property rights as well
as the special needs of developing countries for the implementation of Agenda 21;
(h) Emphasizes that technology cooperation between and among economic actors
of developed and developing countries and countries with economies in transition remains
a key element in achieving sustainable development objectives. Efforts at enhancing
technology cooperation should recognize the critical role of business and industry in
technology development, transfer and diffusion, while recognizing the responsibility of
Governments to develop policy, legal and institutional frameworks, consistent with sustainable
development, in order to promote technology development, transfer and cooperation.
3. The Commission, therefore, decides to include in its future work consideration of
policies to promote sustainable production patterns, and, in this context, to consider the
concept of eco-efficiency and examples of its application in developed and developing
countries, and the transfer of environmentally sound technologies for these purposes. Policy
measures should, in particular, focus on the following areas:
(a) National technology strategies and international technology cooperation. In
defining policy measures in this area, it is important to identify the potential actors, including
Governments, business and industry, research and development institutions and technology
intermediaries, and to examine their respective roles, specific interests, capacities and
priorities. It is also important to identify barriers and restrictions to the transfer of
environmentally sound technologies, in particular to developing countries, and to seek to
reduce such constraints, while creating incentives for such transfer, taking into consideration
the promotion of cleaner production;
(b) Technology integration, economic competitiveness and environmental
management at the enterprise level, including international technology cooperation, at the
enterprise level. In defining policy measures in this area, a thorough understanding of the
factors that influence companies? environmental and economic performance is needed,
including their adoption of best practices in environmental management and the use of
environmentally sound technologies in production processes;.
(c) In the context of technology transfer and adaptation, it is important that
environmentally sound technologies be transferred to developing countries, with support,
including, as appropriate, financial support, from developed countries and relevant
international institutions, in cooperation with the private sector. In this regard, the experience
of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, the United Nations Environment
Programme and other relevant bodies of the United Nations system in establishing cleaner
production centres can help facilitate this process.
4. The Commission:
(a) Invites Governments with the assistance of relevant United Nations bodies such
as the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the United Nations
Environment Programme, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization and the
Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat, and in
consultation with development assistance agencies, to undertake work on the development
of voluntary guidelines on technology partnerships involving economic actors of developed
and developing countries and countries with economies in transition, in the context of creating
and maintaining an enabling environment for the purpose of maximizing the complementary
roles of the public and private sectors in the transfer of environmentally sound technologies.
Based on experience and emerging opportunities, such guidelines could assist Governments:
(i) In developing policy approaches and implementation strategies for technology
cooperation and partnership initiatives;
(ii) In adopting incentives and economic instruments to provide a favourable legal
and policy environment for private sector companies from developed countries to
participate in technology partnership initiatives with developing countries, supported
through an enabling international environment that facilitates access to, and transfer
of, environmentally sound technologies and corresponding know-how;
(iii) In applying mechanisms and tools for the assessment of the effectiveness of the
transfer of environmentally sound technologies and of technology partnership initiatives
with regard to their contribution to achieving economic, social and environmental goals
and targets;
(b) Urges Governments, the private sector and research and development institutions
of developed countries to identify barriers and restrictions to the transfer of environmentally
sound technologies and provide opportunities for technology cooperation, including in
research and development, and partnership initiatives involving economic actors from
developing countries, particularly African countries and the least developed countries, taking
into account conditions and needs of these countries for the transfer of environmentally sound
technologies and related capacity-building activities aimed at creating an enabling
environment; and welcomes studies in this area;
(c) Encourages Governments of developing countries and countries with economies
in transition, with the support of the United Nations system, to develop national strategies
for technology innovation, commercialization and diffusion, with a focus on economic or
industrial sectors that are particularly important with respect to economic growth, natural
resources consumption, efficiency in the use of energy and natural resources in consumption
and production patterns and pollution control, taking fully into account the need to create an
enabling environment for private sector activities. Regional expert group meetings, jointly
organized by Governments and United Nations bodies, including the Department of Economic
and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat, the United Nations Conference on Trade
and Development, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, the United
Nations Environment Programme and the United Nations Development Programme, can be
a useful mechanism to develop guidelines or manuals to assist Governments, upon request,
in developing national technology strategies and initiating various forms of partnerships for
the implementation of these strategies. The guidance document on national needs assessment
for the improved utilization of environmentally sound technologies, adopted by the
Commission in 1996, may be useful in developing such guidelines or manuals;
(d) Requests the United Nations Industrial Development Organization and the United
Nations Environment Programme, in cooperation with the Department of Economic and Social
Affairs, to consider undertaking a study on the effectiveness of incentives to encourage
industry to adopt cleaner production technologies. The study should evaluate existing practices
and experiences of countries and organizations. The results of the evaluation could be useful
to Governments in developing national technology strategies and in ensuring that these
strategies are fully integrated into national sustainable development strategies and
programmes;
(e) Calls on all Governments, with the support of international organizations and
financial institutions, to assist small and medium-sized enterprises, including through funding
of feasibility studies on market opportunities and commercial viability of environmentally
sound technologies, use of economic instruments, including fiscal incentives, export
promotion programmes, trade initiatives, including economically sound technologies-related
issues, and assistance in the development of business plans;
(f) Invites interested Governments of developed and developing countries and
countries with economies in transition to undertake, in particular in the context of promoting
regional cooperation and implementing international environmental conventions and
agreements, in cooperation with the Department of Economic and Social Affairs, the United
Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the United Nations Industrial Development
Organization, the United Nations Environment Programme and other relevant international
bodies, a pilot project on opportunities for sector-specific applications of the
recommendations on transfer and commercialization of publicly funded environmentally sound
technologies made by the International Expert Meeting on the Role of Publicly Funded
Research and Publicly Owned Technologies in the Transfer and Diffusion of Environmentally
Sound Technologies, hosted by the Government of the Republic of Korea.26 The results of
this project could be presented to the Commission in 2002. Issues to be considered might
include:
(i) Reviewing national legal, institutional, development cooperation and other
relevant policies, with a view to removing obstacles to, and providing research and
development institutions and the private sector with incentives for, the transfer and
commercialization of publicly funded and publicly owned environmentally sound
technologies, in particular to developing countries and, as appropriate, countries with
economies in transition;
(ii) Assessing existing as well as new technology transfer mechanisms, for example
bilateral and multilateral memoranda of understanding and environmentally sound
technology pooling or banks, with regard to their potential and use for the transfer and
commercialization of publicly funded and publicly owned environmentally sound
technologies to developing countries and, as appropriate, countries with economies in
transition;
(iii) Considering the creation of additional centres for the transfer of environmentally
sound technologies at various levels, including the regional level, which could greatly
contribute to achieving the objectives of the transfer of environmentally sound
technologies to developing countries;
(iv) Examining various policy approaches to commercialize non-patented or
uncommercialized technologies that result from publicly funded research activities,
including through the promotion of strategic alliances between research and
development institutions, development cooperation agencies, enterprises, technology
centres and other intermediaries, and to facilitate access to these technologies by
developing countries.

B. Capacity-building

5. The Commission on Sustainable Development:
(a) Encourages Governments to review, where necessary, existing planning processes
and policies to assess their capacity-building requirements;
(b) Urges funding agencies to give support to national capacity-building activities,
in particular in developing countries, including in the areas of the design of programmes and
projects, and their implementation and evaluation, through demand-driven approaches,
emphasizing facilitation and stressing a programmatic rather than a project-oriented
framework for capacity-building;
(c) Recommends that capacity-building efforts be intensified where necessary, based
on participatory approaches, with the aim, as called for by the General Assembly, at its
nineteenth special session, of having national sustainable development strategies, or their
equivalent, fully in place by 2002 for implementation and taking into account the
environmental, social and economic needs of developing countries, and urges financial
institutions and operational agencies, particularly through the United Nations Development
Programme?s Capacity 21 programme, to enhance their assistance in this regard;
(d) Encourages Governments at all levels to share experiences with and support
innovative capacity-building programmes that feature greater public access to information,
and broad participation, including by the private sector, at national and local levels. Full use
should be made of existing information-sharing facilities such as the United Nations
Development Programme Subregional Resource Facilities and the World Bank?s Knowledge
Network System;
(e) Urges that more resources be devoted to training and information-sharing activities
such as case studies for practitioners, more action-oriented research and electronic and other
networking;
(f) Encourages countries to increase their national capacity through South-South and
subregional cooperation focused on common programmatic themes, and self-help efforts and
by assessing ways in which capacities can be shared appropriately at the regional and
subregional level. South-South cooperation in this regard should be further strengthened and
supported through triangular arrangements;
(g) Requests that systematic attention be paid by the corresponding task managers
to the capacity-building-related issues of the sectoral themes for future sessions of the
Commission;
(h) Invites the United Nations Development Programme, in cooperation with other
relevant bodies, to promote the exchange and dissemination of information on successful
capacity-building efforts and to make information available, as appropriate, to future sessions
of the Commission.

C. Education, public awareness and training

6. The Commission on Sustainable Development:
(a) Recognizes education, public awareness and training as underpinning all the crosssectoral
themes of Agenda 21;
(b) Reiterates that a fundamental prerequisite for sustainable development is an
adequately financed and effective educational system, at all levels, that augments human
capacity and well-being and is relevant to the implementation of all chapters of Agenda 21.
Education is a lifelong process and should be fully accessible to all;
(c) Recalls that education, public awareness and training includes, inter alia, nonformal
and informal modes of teaching and learning, for example, within the family and
community, and maintains that education for sustainable development should take an
interdisciplinary approach incorporating social, economic and environmental issues;
(d) Notes that public awareness is a prerequisite for public participation in decisionmaking
for sustainable development and is closely linked to access to information;
(e) Recognizes that educating women has a crucial impact on sustainable development
and on changing the attitudes and behaviour of families, society and nations;
(f) Expresses its appreciation to the Government of Greece and the United Nations
Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization for organizing an inter-sessional conference
on ?Environment and Society: Education and Public Awareness for Sustainability?, which
was held at Thessaloniki from 8 to 12 December 1997;
(g) Welcomes the contributions of major groups in sharing case studies of innovative
practices in promoting, in particular, education, public awareness and training within their
respective contexts, including youth-sponsored initiatives, encourages their continued action
through such activities, and requests that the Commission continue to be informed of such
work at future sessions;
(h) Recognizes the important role of schools and universities in the further
implementation of Agenda 21, especially at the local level;
(i) Notes that the World Conference on Higher Education, to be held in Paris in
October 1998, provides a good opportunity to address the challenge of how to promote and
strengthen an interdisciplinary approach in university curricula and research agendas for a
sustainable future and to consider the further adaptation of higher education systems, as
appropriate, in this regard;
(j) Takes note of the International Registry of Innovative Practices Promoting
Education, Public Awareness and Training for Sustainability being developed by the United
Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization and encourages its further
development.
7. Taking into account the work programme on education, public awareness and training
initiated at its fourth session, the Commission:
(a) With regard to clarifying and communicating the concept and key messages of
education for sustainable development:
(i) Urges the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization and
other United Nations organizations, Governments and major groups to pursue the
implementation of chapter 36 of Agenda 21, and the work programme on education
approved by the Commission at its fourth session, as part of the integrated follow-up
to the major United Nations conferences and conventions related to sustainable
development, taking into account the work of the Economic and Social Council in this
regard;
(ii) Calls on the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
to continue its efforts to clarify and communicate the concept and key messages of
education for sustainable development, with emphasis on assisting in the interpretation
and adaptation of these messages at the regional and national levels;
(b) With regard to reviewing national education policies and formal educational
systems:
(i) Calls on Governments at all levels, with the assistance and participation, as
appropriate, of international organizations, the educational and scientific communities,
non-governmental organizations and local authorities, to develop policies and strategies
for reorienting education towards sustainable development, including roles and
responsibilities of actors at the local, national and regional levels;
(ii) In this context, Governments may wish to include the establishment of national
centres of excellence in such strategies;
(iii) Calls on Governments at all levels to include sustainable development objectives
into curricula or equivalent instruments corresponding to the level of education, and
encourages them, where appropriate, to consider the effectiveness of education for
sustainable development;
(iv) Invites the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization,
working closely with relevant educational institutions and international organizations,
to develop guidelines for the reorientation of teacher training towards sustainable
development;
(v) Calls on Governments to take appropriate steps, in consultation with international,
national and subnational representatives of teachers, including unions, as well as
specialists in higher education and youth, to reorient teacher training in formal education
systems towards sustainable development;
(vi) Urges institutions of higher education, with the support of Governments and the
academic community, to adapt their teaching and research to introducing an
interdisciplinary approach conducive to addressing sustainable development issues;
(vii) Invites the World Conference on Higher Education to give due consideration to
ways in which the reform of higher education systems may support sustainable
development;
(c) With regard to incorporating education into national strategies and action plans
for sustainable development:
(i) Urges Governments to make education and public awareness significant
components in regional, national and local strategies and action plans for sustainable
development;
(ii) Invites the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization,
working with the United Nations Development Programme, the Department of
Economic and Social Affairs and other relevant bodies, to complete the survey of
existing regional and national strategies and action plans for sustainable development
to determine the extent to which education has been adequately addressed to date to
develop recommendations resulting therefrom and to make such information available
to the Commission;
(iii) Encourages Governments at all levels to integrate education, as appropriate, into
national and local strategies for sustainable development, and calls upon the
international community and the United Nations system to assist developing countries,
as needed, in this regard;
(iv) Urges Governments to integrate the aspect of gender balance and the
empowerment of women into national education strategies;
(d) With regard to educating to promote sustainable consumption and production
patterns in all countries:
(i) Requests the task managers for chapters 4 and 36 of Agenda 21 (the Department
of Economic and Social Affairs and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and
Cultural Organization), working together with other relevant bodies, including the
United Nations Environment Programme, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation
and Development and representatives of business and industry, trade unions and
non-governmental organizations, to continue their efforts to raise awareness of the
implications for sustainability of current patterns of consumption and production, in
particular in the developed countries, making better use of educational tools and
consumer feedback mechanisms to facilitate policy-making, and developing and
promoting social instruments through education and training intended to change
consumption and production patterns, with industrialized countries taking the lead, and
in this context, to continue the work on indicators for sustainable consumption and
production patterns;
(ii) Calls upon the media as well as the business community, including the World
Business Council for Sustainable Development, the International Chamber of
Commerce and other business institutions, trade unions and civil society, to work with
the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, the United
Nations Environment Programme, the Department of Economic and Social Affairs, the
United Nations Industrial Development Organization and other key bodies, to collect
best practices in media and advertising that address concerns related to promoting
sustainable consumption and production patterns, particularly in the developed
countries;
(iii) Requests the Secretary-General, in cooperation with the United Nations
Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, to report on progress made and
actions taken in this area, including those identified by the General Assembly at its
nineteenth special session, to the Commission at its seventh session, when consumption
and production patterns will be the cross-sectoral theme;
(e) With regard to promoting investments for education:
Calls upon the United Nations Development Programme, the World Bank and
other international financing institutions to consider the current levels of financing for
education for sustainable development, with a view to developing a strategy or policies
for mobilizing new and additional resources from all sources for ensuring greater
financial support for education for sustainable development;
(f) With regard to identifying and sharing innovative practices:
(i) Invites the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization to
continue to work on the international electronic registry and knowledge management
system for chapter 36 and requests that this information be made available in both
electronic and conventional formats to all countries, in particular the developing
countries. Innovative programme and projects from all sources, such as various major
groups, including industry, women, youth and non-governmental organizations, should
be encouraged and included in this inventory;
(ii) Encourages the development and strengthening of international and regional
alliances, associations and networks among universities and other educational and
training institutions and professional bodies in all countries, in particular among those
in developing and developed countries. These alliances should include distance learning,
training for trainers, exchanges and mentoring;
(iii) Calls on Governments to encourage and strengthen networks and partnerships
for education for sustainable development, including, inter alia, schools, parents,
private and public institutions and organizations, as well as private firms;
(iv) Encourages the recognition and use of traditional knowledge, innovations and
practices of indigenous people and local communities for the management of natural
resources in education for sustainable development;
(g) With regard to raising public awareness:

(i) Calls on Governments to facilitate the development of capacities for raising public
awareness and access to information on sustainable development and on social,
economic and environmental impacts of unsustainable production and consumption
patterns at the global, regional and national levels;
(ii) Calls on Governments at all levels, the media and advertising agencies to
undertake information campaigns to communicate to the public the key messages of
sustainable development;
(iii) Calls on Governments to take fully into account the provisions of relevant
international conventions when providing information in order to raise public
awareness.
8. The Commission:
(a) Calls upon the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
as task manager, to further strengthen and accelerate the implementation of the work
programme on education for sustainable development in cooperation with, inter alia, the
United Nations Environment Programme, the United Nations Development Programme and
non-governmental organizations;
(b) Requests the Secretary-General to include in his report to the Commission at its
seventh session information on progress made in implementing the work programme.

D. Science for sustainable development

9. The Commission on Sustainable Development:
(a) Recognizes the serious gaps in scientific capacities, especially in developing
countries, and stresses the need for strong and concerted action at the national and
international levels to urgently build up and strengthen the national scientific infrastructure
and research management capabilities of these countries, to formulate national strategies,
policies and plans for that purpose and to strengthen their science education programmes at
all levels;
(b) Stresses the need to improve the processes of generating, sharing and utilizing
science for sustainable development and for more action-oriented interdisciplinary research,
with greater focus on the prevention and early identification of emerging problems and
opportunities;
(c) Notes that the World Science Conference, to be organized jointly by the United
Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization and the International Council of
Scientific Unions in Budapest in June 1999, in cooperation with other United Nations agencies
and international scientific organizations, provides a good opportunity to address key issues
of science for sustainable development;
(d) Urges the scientific community to work with government authorities, the education
community, major groups and international organizations to strengthen science education
at all levels and to overcome the communication gaps within the scientific community and
between scientists, policy makers and the general public;
(e) Invites Governments, the United Nations system and major groups to provide
information on best practices and other illustrative examples related to the future sectoral
themes of the Commission where science has been effectively employed to support the
development and implementation of policies in these sectors;
(f) Invites relevant international scientific advisory bodies and programmes to
contribute, as appropriate, to the consideration of the sectoral themes of the Commission
sessions in 1999, 2000 and 2001 on issues relevant to their interest;
(g) Calls on multilateral and bilateral donor agencies and Governments, as well as
specific funding mechanisms, to continue to enhance their support to strengthen higher
education and scientific research capacities related to sustainable development in developing
countries, particularly in Africa and the least developed countries. Such efforts should aim
at:
(i) Strengthening research and teaching infrastructures in universities and their
proper re-equipping as a critical precondition for the development of capacity in science
and technology;
(ii) Linking technical assistance programmes to education and research in the broad
field of environment and sustainable development;
(iii) Fostering university/business/civil society partnerships within and among
countries;
(iv) Promoting regional and subregional cooperative training and research
programmes and networks;
(v) Acquiring modern information technologies so as to ensure easy access to
information sources around the world, as well as to be part of existing global and
regional scientific and technological information networks to address the scientific
needs of developing countries;
(h) Encourages Governments of all countries to join forces with international
organizations and the scientific community to strengthen the global environmental observing
systems;
(i) Invites the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization and
the International Council of Scientific Unions, in planning the World Science Conference
in 1999, to take fully into account the interdisciplinary nature of sustainable development
issues, with a view to strengthening the role of natural and social science in sustainable
development and to mobilizing increased investment in research and development of scientific
themes of sustainable development.


[%doctitle%]

Decision 6/1. Strategic approaches to freshwater management**
1. The Commission on Sustainable Development, having considered the reports of the
Secretary-General on strategic approaches to freshwater management3 and on the activities
of the organizations of the United Nations system in the field of freshwater resources,4
welcomes the report of the Inter-sessional Ad Hoc Working Group on Strategic Approaches
to Freshwater Management5 and the report of the Expert Group Meeting on Strategic

Approaches to Freshwater Management, held at Harare from 27 to 30 January 1998,6 and
takes note of the outcome of the International Dialogue Forum on Global Water Politics,
Cooperation for Transboundary Water Management, convened by the Government of Germany
at Petersberg, near Bonn, from 3 to 5 March 19987 and of the International Conference on
Water and Sustainable Development, convened by the Government of France in Paris from
19 to 21 March 1998.
2. The objectives of sustainable development and the links among its three components ?
economic and social development and environmental protection ? were clearly articulated
in Agenda 219 and the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development.10 The specific
decisions and policy recommendations concerning the application of integrated approaches
to the development, management, use and protection of freshwater resources as elaborated
in chapter 18 of Agenda 21 and the seven key areas contained in that chapter continue to be
a fundamental basis for action and shall be implemented in accordance with the specific
characteristics of each country.
3. In this regard, the Commission reaffirms that water resources are essential for satisfying
basic human needs, health and food production, energy, and the restoration and maintenance
of ecosystems, and for social and economic development in general. Agriculture accounts
for a major part of global freshwater use. It is imperative that freshwater resources
development, use, management and protection be planned in an integrated manner, taking
into account both short- and long-term needs. Consequently, the priority to be accorded to
the social dimension of freshwater management is of fundamental importance. This should
be reflected in an integrated approach to freshwater in order to be coherent, aimed at achieving
truly people-centred sustainable development in accordance with their local conditions. It
is important that consideration of equitable and responsible use of water become an integral
part in the formulation of strategic approaches to integrated water management at all levels,
in particular in addressing the problems of people living in poverty. The development,
management, protection and use of water so as to contribute to the eradication of poverty and
the promotion of food security is an exceptionally important goal. The role of groundwater;
rivers, lakes, streams and wetlands; estuaries and the sea; and forests, other vegetation and
other parts of their ecosystems in the water cycle and their importance to water quality and
quantity should be acknowledged and protected. Another set of crucial issues relates to the
links between water quality, sanitation and protection of human health.
4. Since 1992, marked improvements in water quality have occurred in a number of river
basins and groundwater aquifers where pressures for action have been strong. However,
overall progress has been neither sufficient nor comprehensive enough to reduce general
trends of increasing water shortages, deteriorating water quality and growing stress on
freshwater ecosystems and on the natural hydrological cycle. Water must not become a limiting
factor for sustainable development and human welfare. A series of potential water-related
problems can be averted if appropriate action is taken now towards an integrated approach
to the efficient use, development, management, protection and use of freshwater resources.
5. Competition for limited freshwater increasingly occurs between agricultural, rural,
urban, industrial and environmental uses. In adopting the Programme for the Further
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11 General Assembly resolution S-19/2.
4
Implementation of Agenda 21,11 in particular its paragraph 34, the General Assembly
recognized the importance of taking into account, while dealing with freshwater development
and management, the differing level of socio-economic development prevalent in developing
countries. The Assembly recognized, inter alia, the urgent need to formulate and implement
national policies of integrated watershed management in a fully participatory manner aimed
at achieving and integrating economic, social and environmental objectives of sustainable
development. In addition to agreeing to those strategic principles, the Assembly also
recognized the urgent need to strengthen international cooperation to support local, national
and regional action, in particular in the fields of environment and development, safe water
supply and sanitation, food security and agricultural production, energy, flood and drought
management, and recycling, through efforts in such areas as information exchange, capacitybuilding,
technology transfer and financing.
6. The process called for in the Programme for the Further Implementation of Agenda 21
should focus on fostering and supporting national, regional and international action in those
areas where goals and objectives have been defined; on the identification of existing gaps
and emerging issues; on the development of education and learning systems and also on
building global consensus where further understanding is required; and on promoting greater
coordination in approaches by the United Nations and relevant international institutions,
particularly in support of national implementation policies and development.
7. The implementation of integrated water resources development, management, protection
and use requires action at all levels, with the technical and financial support of the
international community. Those actions should be closely related to other areas of natural
resources management, including biodiversity, the coastal zone, agriculture, land, forestry
and mountain development. Effective integrated water resources management should
incorporate approaches dealing with river basins, watershed management and ecosystem
maintenance, where decision-making needs to be supported by education.
8. There is a need to put in place local and national management plans to bring about
productive and sustainable interactions between human activities and the ecological
functioning of freshwater systems based on the natural hydrological cycle, with the technical
and financial support of the international community. Such plans need to minimize the adverse
impacts of human activities on wetlands and coastal areas, estuarine and marine environments,
and in mountainous areas, and to reduce potential losses from droughts and floods, erosion,
desertification and natural disasters. Furthermore, sanitation, pollution prevention,
proliferation of aquatic weeds, especially water hyacinth, and the treatment and recycling of
waste water need to be addressed.
9. Local integrated water management plans require detailed assessment of water resources
requirements, including the exact nature of the demands and an estimate of the catchment
yield. In this regard, there is a need to reduce and eliminate unsustainable patterns of
production and consumption and to promote appropriate demographic policies.
10. The Commission therefore:
(a) Urges Governments, with the technical and financial support of the international
community, where appropriate, to address the numerous gaps identified in the path towards
integrated water resources development management, protection and use. Areas that require
further attention include (i) meeting basic health education needs and raising awareness of
the scope and function of surface and groundwater resources; (ii) the need for human resources
development and participatory approaches, notably including women and local communities
and integrating freshwater issues into local Agenda 21 processes; (iii) the role of ecosystems

12 The United Nations Water Conference, held at Mar del Plata, Argentina, in 1977; the Global
Consultation on Safe Water and Sanitation for the 1990s, held at New Delhi in 1990; the World
Summit for Children, held in New York in 1990; the International Conference on Water and the
Environment, held at Dublin in 1992; the United Nations Conference on Environment and
Development, held at Rio de Janeiro in 1992; the Ministerial Conference on Drinking Water Supply
and Environmental Sanitation for the 1990s, held at Noordwijk, Netherlands in 1994; the
International Conference on Population and Development, held at Cairo in 1994; the Global
Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, held at Bridgetown in
1994; the World Summit for Social Development, held at Copenhagen in 1995; the Fourth World
Conference on Women, held at Beijing in 1995; the Intergovernmental Conference to Adopt a Global
Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-based Activities, held
at Washington, D.C. in 1995; the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II), held
at Istanbul in 1996; the World Food Summit, held in Rome in 1996; and the nineteenth special session
of the General Assembly, in 1997.

in the provision of goods and services; (iv) balancing structural and non-structural
approaches; (v) explicit linkages with socio-economic development, for equitable utilization
and efficient freshwater allocation and use; (vi) improved sanitation and waste-water treatment
and recycling; (vii) conserving the biological diversity of freshwater ecosystems; (viii)
conservation and sustainable use of wetlands; (ix) the understanding of hydrology and the
capacity to assess the availability and variability of water resources; (x) mobilization of
financial resources and mainstreaming of gender issues into all aspects of water resources
management; and (xi) wasteful water usage. Strategic and integrated actions are still needed
in order to adapt to ever-changing social and environmental circumstances and to address
fundamental concerns for combating poverty, ensuring adequate provision of public health,
food security and energy, and to protect the environment better. International cooperation
and action needs to address effectively the above issues, building on existing consensus for
the successful implementation of integrated water resources development, management,
protection and use;
(b) Encourages riparian States to cooperate on matters related to international
watercourses, whether transboundary or boundary, taking into account appropriate
arrangements and/or mechanisms and the interests of all riparian States concerned, relevant
to effective development, management, protection and use of water resources;
(c) Encourages riparian States, on the basis of mutual agreement and the common
interest of all riparian States concerned, to establish, where appropriate, organizations at the
river basin level for the implementation of water management programmes. Within its existing
guidelines, the Global Environment Facility is invited to consider supporting such
developments as part of its international water portfolio. All these actions should be
complemented by activities to support effective national water policies and strategies in the
developing countries affected by desertification and drought, particularly those in Africa;
(d) Encourages Governments, at the appropriate level, in accordance with the specific
characteristics of each country, to formulate and publish the main goals, long- and short-term
objectives and general principles of water policies and implement them by means of
comprehensive programmes. The implementation of local or national programmes should
form an important part of the local Agenda 21 approach;
(e) Encourages Governments, at the appropriate level, while formulating integrated
water resources management policies and programmes to implement relevant conventions
in force. In particular, the relevant conventions on biological diversity, desertification, climate
change, and wetlands and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of
Wild Fauna and Flora need to be considered. In addition, consideration should be given, as
appropriate, to relevant recommendations and/or programmes of action emanating from a
number of major international conferences and events.12 Furthermore, in formulating such
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policies, the Commission invites Governments to address the need for achieving universal
access to water supply and sanitation, with poverty eradication being one of the objectives,
taking into account, in particular, chapter 18 of Agenda 21 and relevant recommendations
of conferences and events;
(f) Recognizes that expert meetings as well as international conferences provided
useful information and valuable inputs for intergovernmental deliberations and negotiations
at the sixth session of the Commission, and the importance of more such meetings being held
in developing countries. Invites Governments to consider, as appropriate, the key
recommendations stemming from the report of the Expert Group Meeting on Strategic
Approaches to Freshwater Management, held at Harare, and the outcome of the International
Conference on Water and Sustainable Development, held in Paris.
A. Information and data for decision-making
11. Information and data are key elements for assisting in the management and use of water
resources and in the protection of the environment. All States, according to their capacity and
available resources, are encouraged to collect, store, process and analyse water-related data
in a transparent manner and to make such data and forecasts publicly available in the
framework of a participatory approach. Because women have a particular role in utilizing
and conserving water resources on a daily basis, their knowledge and experience should be
considered as a component of any sustainable water management programme.
12. The Commission therefore:
(a) Encourages Governments to establish and maintain effective information and
monitoring networks and further promote the exchange and dissemination of information
relevant for policy formulation, planning, investment and operational decisions, including
data collected based on gender differences, where appropriate, regarding both surface water
and groundwater, and quantity, quality and uses, as well as related ecosystems, and to
harmonize data collection at the local catchment and the basin/aquifer levels. Information
concerning all relevant factors affecting demand is also essential;
(b) Stresses that effective management of water resources demands that attention be
paid to essential activities, all of which require fundamental knowledge about water resources
as well as information about water quality, quantity and uses, including (i) water resources
planning and watershed management at local and national levels; (ii) regulatory activities;
(iii) investments in infrastructure and technologies for remedying and preventing pollution;
and (iv) education and training;
(c) Encourages Governments to facilitate the collection and dissemination of water
data and documentation that enhances public awareness of important water-related issues,
to improve the understanding of meteorology and processes related to water quantity and
quality and the functioning of ecosystems, and to strengthen relevant information systems for
forecasting and managing uncertainty regarding water resources. Such efforts on the part of
developing countries, particularly the least developed countries, require support from the
international community;
(d) Encourages Governments to design programmes aimed at increasing public
awareness on the need to conserve, protect and use water sustainably and allow local
communities to participate in monitoring of water-related indicators. This information should
then be made available for community participation in decision-making;
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13 Report of the United Nations Water Conference, Mar del Plata, 14?25 March 1977 (United Nations
publication, Sales No. E.77.II.A.12), chap. I.
7
(e) Also encourages Governments, taking into account their financial and human
resources, to develop and implement national and local water-related indicators of progress
in achieving integrated water resources management, including water quality and quantity
objectives, taking into account ongoing work of the Commission on indicators of sustainable
development. In addition, in accordance with their policies, priorities and resources,
Governments may find it useful to carry out national water quality and quantity inventories
for surface water and groundwater, including the identification of gaps in available
information;
(f) Invites Governments to establish or strengthen mechanisms for consultations on
drought and flood preparedness and early warning systems and mitigation plans at all
appropriate levels. Governments are encouraged to consider the establishment of rapid
intervention systems to ensure that individuals and communities can be assisted in recovering
from damage that they suffer from such extreme events. At the international level, in
particular, there is the need to maintain support of these activities at the conclusion of the
International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction;
(g) Calls upon the international community, including the United Nations system,
to support national efforts in information and data collection and dissemination through
coordinated and differentiated action. In particular in their respective fields, United Nations
agencies and programmes and other international bodies should support Governments in the
development and coordination of relevant data and information networks at the appropriate
level, carry out periodic global assessments and analyses of water resources availability (both
quality and quantity) and changes in demand, assist in identifying water-related problems and
environmental issues, and promote the broadest exchange and dissemination of relevant
information, in particular to developing countries. Encourages access to, and exchange of,
information in user-friendly formats based on terminology easily understood.
B. Institutions, capacity-building and participation
13. The Commission on Sustainable Development:
(a) Urges Governments to establish national coordination mechanisms across all
sectors, as already envisaged in the Mar del Plata Action Plan,13 providing for contributions
from government and public authorities and the participation of civil society, including
communities affected, in the formulation and implementation of integrated water resources
development and management plans and policies. Such mechanisms should also provide for
participation by communities and water users. This involves the participation at the
appropriate levels, of water users and the public in planning, implementing and evaluating
water resources activities. It is particularly important to broaden women?s participation and
integrate gender analysis in water planning;
(b) Invites Governments to take the necessary steps to establish legislative and
regulatory frameworks ? and to improve such frameworks where they exist ? to facilitate
integrated water resources management and strategies, including both demand and supply
management as well as the links with the management of land use, taking into account the
need to build capacity to apply and enforce such frameworks. Each Government needs to
define its relevant functions and distinguish between those related to standards, regulationsetting
and control, on the one hand, and the direct management and provision of services,
on the other;
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(c) Encourages Governments to consider how best to devolve responsibilities to the
lowest appropriate level for the organization and management of public water supply,
sanitation services and irrigation systems, as well as water resources management within the
framework of national water policies;
(d) Urges Governments to strengthen institutional and human capacities at the
national, subnational and local levels, in view of the complexity of implementing integrated
water resources development and management strategies, particularly in large urban
settlements. This could be done through local Agenda 21 processes, where they exist.
Effective water resources development, management and protection requires appropriate tools
for educating and training water management staff and water users at all levels and for
ensuring that women, youth, indigenous people and local communities have equal access to
education and training programmes. Design of these programmes should be done in
cooperation with stakeholders;
(e) Encourages Governments to establish an enabling environment to facilitate
partnerships between the public and private sectors and non-governmental organizations,
aiming towards improved local capacity to protect water resources, through educational
programmes and public access to information. At the global level, appropriate existing
mechanisms can provide a universal forum for debate and the development of ideas. The
pivotal role of women should be reflected in institutional arrangements for the development,
management, protection and use of water resources. There is a need to strengthen the role
of women, who should have an equal voice with regard to water resources development,
management, protection and use and in the sharing of benefits;
(f) Encourages public authorities, public and private companies and nongovernmental
organizations dealing with the formulation, arrangement and financing of water
resources programmes to engage in a dialogue with users. This dialogue requires the sharing
of information with interested parties regarding the sustainable use of water and relationships
with land use, public access to information and data, and discussions on objectives and
implementation modalities, in accordance with the national legislation of each country;
(g) Calls upon the international community, in particular the organizations of the
United Nations system, especially the United Nations Development Programme, to strengthen
capacity-building programmes, taking into account the special needs of developing countries,
in particular the least developed countries, and the specific circumstances of small island
developing States, in areas such as training, institutional development and the participation
of women, youth, indigenous people and local communities in support of national efforts in
this field.
C. Technology transfer and research cooperation
14. The Commission on Sustainable Development:
(a) Encourages Governments to remove impediments to and stimulate research and
development cooperation, together with the development of technologies for sustainable water
management and use, and to increase efficiency, reduce pollution and proliferation of aquatic
weeds, especially water hyacinths, and promote sustainable agriculture and food production
systems. This also applies in the areas of desalination, brackish water treatment, waste-water
treatment, management of wetlands, drainage water reuse, improving the chemical quality
of groundwater, including the treatment of arsenic and other harmful heavy metals, and desert
dew catchment, and in the use of remote sensing techniques and other relevant modern
technologies in order to help increase the supplies of freshwater. All this involves the
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adaptation and diffusion of new and innovative techniques and technologies, both private and
public, and the transfer of technologies to developing countries. In this context, the
Commission urges developed countries to strengthen research cooperation and to promote,
facilitate and finance, as appropriate, the access to and transfer of environmentally sound
technologies and the corresponding know-how to developing countries on favourable terms,
including on concessional and preferential terms, as mutually agreed, taking into account the
need to protect intellectual property rights, as well as the special needs of developing countries
for the implementation of Agenda 21;
(b) Urges Governments, industry and international organizations to promote
technology transfer and research cooperation to foster sustainable agricultural practices that
promote efficient water use and reduce pollution of surface water and groundwater. These
technologies should include the improvement of crops grown on marginal sites, erosion
control practices and the adaptation of farming systems. They should also improve water use
efficiency in irrigated areas and improve the adaptation and productivity of drought-tolerant
crop species. Farmer participation in farm research, irrigation projects and watershed
management should be encouraged. Research results and technologies should be available
to both small and large producers;
(c) Urges Governments to promote innovative approaches to technology cooperation
projects involving partnerships between the public and private sectors within an effective
framework of regulation and supervision;
(d) Calls upon all relevant parties to develop and implement best practices and
appropriate technologies, taking into account the local conditions, in the area of water
development, management, protection and use. Codes of conduct, guidelines and other
voluntary agreements can enhance the positive role that industry and agriculture can play and
should cover the activities of companies operating and investing outside their home countries;
(e) Encourages Governments to make the best use of national, regional and
international environmentally appropriate technology centres. The use of local and traditional
technology and knowledge should be promoted and South/South cooperation encouraged;
(f) Encourages Governments to develop programmes linked to education, especially
those relating to water and land management. Water and land users and managers alike need
to become more aware of the need to control wastage and factors affecting demand and supply,
to realize the scarcity value of water, water-borne diseases and pollution, soil erosion and
deterioration, sedimentation and environmental protection;
(g) Urges donor countries and international organizations to intensify their efforts
and to accelerate their technical assistance programmes to developing countries, aimed at
facilitating the transfer and diffusion of appropriate technologies. The United Nations system,
as well as regional groupings, have an important role to play in facilitating the contact between
those in need of assistance and those able to provide it. Less formal arrangements may also
have a role to play.
D. Financial resources and mechanisms
15. The Commission reaffirms that, as stated in the Programme of Action for the Further
Implementation of Agenda 21, the current intergovernmental process on freshwater resources
can only be fully fruitful if there is a proved commitment by the international community for
the provision of new and additional financial resources to developing countries, in particular
to the least developed countries, for the goals of this initiative. Such financial resources, from
all sources, need to be mobilized for the development, management, protection and use of
freshwater resources if the broader aims of sustainable development are to be realized,
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particularly in relation to poverty eradication. The effective and efficient use of resources
currently allocated to the freshwater sector is also important and could contribute in helping
to increase financial flows from both the public and the private sector.
16. Official development assistance should be provided for and complement, inter alia,
programmes and frameworks for promoting integrated water resources development,
management, protection and use that (a) meet basic needs; (b) safeguard public health;
(c) promote sustainable development and conservation and sustainable use of ecosystems;
and (d) build capacity. Donors, including multilateral donor institutions, should be ready to
continue, or even reinforce, the support for programmes and projects in the water sector that
will contribute to eradicating poverty. In this context, the Commission recalls that all financial
commitments of Agenda 21, particularly those contained in chapter 33, and the provisions
with regard to new and additional resources that are both adequate and predictable need to
be urgently fulfilled. Projects supported by donors should, where appropriate and possible,
become financially self-sustaining. Donors should also continue to support the freshwater
issues that are related to desertification, loss of biodiversity, loss of wetlands, drought, floods
and climate change.
17. The private sector represents one of the growing sources of investment in the water
sector. Local and national water management systems should be designed in ways that
encourage public and private partnerships. It is important to ensure that water management
systems are organized so that they will be sustainable and, once established, can support
themselves. It is important to encourage the participation of the private sector within the
framework of appropriate national policies. The adoption of enabling financial frameworks
contributes to promoting the mobilization of private sector finance. Official development
assistance has an important role in assisting developing countries to adopt appropriate policy
frameworks for water resources management.
18. For developing countries, the role of government regulation in the allocation of
freshwater resources remains important. Resources should be allocated and costs met in an
accountable and transparent manner. Costs should be covered either through cost recovery
or from public sector budgets. Cost recovery could be gradually phased in by water utilities
or the public authorities, taking into account the specific conditions of each country.
Transparent subsidies for specific groups, particularly people living in poverty, are required
in some countries. Governments could benefit from sharing experience in this regard.
Incentives may be necessary to promote land use practices appropriate to local conditions
in order to protect or rehabilitate freshwater resources of particularly sensitive areas, such
as mountainous regions and other fragile ecosystems.
19. The Commission on Sustainable Development:
(a) Invites Governments to strengthen consultative mechanisms between bilateral
and multilateral donors and recipient States aimed at improving or preparing schemes for
the mobilization of financial resources in a predictable manner, for meeting the need of priority
areas based on local and national programmes of action, with a special focus on integrated
water resources development, management, protection and use, while recognizing the needs
of vulnerable groups and people living in poverty;
(b) Calls for initiatives to be undertaken to help identify and mobilize more
resources ? human, technical (know-how) and financial ? and take into account the 20/20
initiative, especially in the programme of poverty eradication, in accordance with national
policies and in the light of specific provisions and commitments on resources related to water
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14 All references to the platforms for or programmes of action of major conferences should be considered
in a manner consistent with the reports of those conferences.
11
issues made at recent United Nations conferences.14 A fundamental aim must be to promote
the generation of the resources needed for economically and environmentally sound water
supply and recycling, irrigation, energy, sanitation and water management systems, including
the control of aquatic weeds, especially water hyacinths, and their efficient and effective
deployment;
(c) Invites Governments to allocate sufficient public financial resources for the
provision of safe and sustainable water supply and sanitation to meet basic human needs and
for waste-water treatment. These resources should be complementary to the technical and
financial support of the international community;
(d) Urges Governments, when using economic instruments for guiding the allocation
of water, to take into particular account the needs of vulnerable groups, children, local
communities and people living in poverty, as well as environmental requirements, efficiency,
transparency, equity and, in the light of the specific conditions of each country, at the national
and local levels, the polluter-pays principle. Such instruments need to recognize the special
role of women in relation to water in many societies;
(e) Urges Governments to initiate a review of existing financial support arrangements
in order to enhance their efficiency and effectiveness. Such a review should aim at the
mobilization of financial resources from all sources, particularly international financial
resources, in a predictable manner, based on local and national action plans, with a specific
focus on integrated water resources development, management, use and protection
programmes and policies. In this context, both formal and informal arrangements could have
a role to play. International financial support will continue to be important to the development
of local and national water management systems. Governments, with the technical and
financial support of the international community, need to promote the economic, social and
environmental values provided by ecosystems and examine the short- and long-term cost of
their degradation;
(f) Calls upon the international community to intensify its efforts and to consider new
initiatives, within appropriate existing mechanisms, for mobilizing financial resources to
promote efforts of developing countries in the integrated management, development,
distribution, protection and use of water resources. Particular attention should be given to
the following aspects:
(i) Promoting more effective donor coordination and more effective and creative use
of existing resources;
(ii) Generation of new and additional financial resources from all sources;
(iii) Identification of appropriate sources of direct grants and loans on concessional
terms;
(iv) Quantification of the resources required to meet the needs of developing countries;
(v) Resources contributions by industrialized countries and international financial
institutions, including regional institutions;
(vi) Formulation of financial strategies that include possible partnerships with nongovernmental
organizations and the private sector and the promotion of conditions for
increased private financial flows;
(vii) Strengthening of consultative mechanisms, especially at the subregional and
regional levels, by Governments and the international community aimed at making
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12
freshwater a development priority and at improving dialogue between industrialized
and developing countries in a well-targeted and predictable manner, based on national
action plans, with a special focus on sustainable and integrated water resources
management that recognizes the needs of all stakeholders, especially vulnerable groups
and people living in poverty. This could include exploring the potential of new financial
arrangements.
Follow-up and assessment
20. The Commission on Sustainable Development:
(a) Invites Governments to continue to provide voluntary national communication
or reports on actions they have taken towards the development and implementation of national
strategies and programmes in integrated water resources development, management and
protection. Requests the Secretariat to continue collecting, analysing and disseminating
national information on this implementation and to ensure that data is gender-differentiated
whenever possible. Also requests the Secretariat, in reporting to the Commission, to make
a more comprehensive use of the information already provided by Governments through their
national reports and to promote exchanges of such information and further develop relevant
databases;
(b) Encourages Governments to work together at appropriate levels to improve
integrated water resources management. The overall aim should be to ensure effective
arrangements for cooperation between Governments to promote the implementation of policies
and strategies at the local and national levels. Possibilities should also be identified for joint
projects and missions;
(c) Recognizes the important tasks for United Nations agencies and programmes and
other international bodies in helping developing countries to implement their integrated water
resources development, management and protection programmes and policies. It invites the
Subcommittee on Water Resources of the Administrative Committee on Coordination, as task
manager for chapter 18 of Agenda 21, to make its work more transparent through, inter alia,
regular briefings to Governments, to enhance coordination within the United Nations system
and to accelerate the implementation of chapter 18 by considering action to, inter alia:
(i) Identify gaps or inconsistencies in the implementation of programmes of its
constituent organizations by assessing the main features and effectiveness of the
implementation of those activities and ensure that the mainstreaming of gender
perspectives is appropriately included;
(ii) Increase efficiency in programme delivery and possibilities for joint programming;
(iii) Explore the potential of cooperation arrangements and, where appropriate, take
into account the experience gained in existing programmes in the United Nations
system;
(d) Invites the Secretary-General to submit a report to the Commission, prior to its
eighth session, on progress of the Subcommittee on Water Resources of the Administrative
Committee on Coordination, as task manager of chapter 18 of Agenda 21, on the activities
mentioned in the above paragraph;
(e) Stresses the importance of coordination of policies and activities of the specialized
agencies and other bodies of the United Nations system related to freshwater, including clean
and safe water supply and sanitation, and, given the seriousness of the situation, emphasizes
the need to provide close attention to the effects of disposal of toxic substances, including
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13
arsenic contamination of drinking water supplies, and persistent organic pollutants upon water
resources, as recommended by the Economic and Social Council at its substantive session
of 1997;
(f) Invites the United Nations Environment Programme, in collaboration with other
relevant United Nations bodies, to play a vital role in providing inputs through the provision
of technical and scientific advice on environmental aspects of the sustainable development
of freshwater resources. In the field of freshwater, the Programme could focus on assisting
countries, especially developing countries, in strengthening their ability in this regard, in
technology transfer and environmental institutional strengthening and in responding to
requests for assistance in strengthening integrated river basin management. The potential of
the Global Environment Monitoring System and other relevant global monitoring networks
should be fully utilized. Such activities would provide an effective contribution to the work
of the Commission;
(g) Encourages Governments, in cooperation with relevant organizations, to organize
meetings aimed at identifying problems to be resolved, articulating priorities for action and
exchanging experience and best practices and to facilitate progress in implementing the
present decision. Such meetings are invited to inform the Commission of their conclusions
in order to contribute to its work;
(h) Recognizes the need for periodic assessments of the success of strategic
approaches to the sustainable development, management, protection and use of freshwater
resources in achieving the goals described in chapter 18 of Agenda 21 and for a global picture
of the state of freshwater resources and potential problems;
(i) Invites the Subcommittee on Water Resources of the Administrative Committee
on Coordination, as task manager for chapter 18 of Agenda 21, to arrange the compilation
and publication of such assessments.