Daily read-outs from the Conference Secretary-General for the Spokesperson's noon briefing
21 June 2012Today, the second day of the Conference continues with statements from Heads of State and Government and Heads of Delegations in the Plenary, in the High-level Round Tables, as well as side events. As of yesterday evening, approximately 50 speakers addressed the Plenary. They expressed their support for the outcome document to be adopted by the plenary at its concluding meeting and further stressed the importance of effective follow up. Many announced specific commitments and initiatives. During the four Round Tables, Heads of State and Government and Ministers provided more detailed interventions on how to move forward in implementing the outcomes of the Conference. At the Round Tables, the Rapporteurs of the Sustainable Development Dialogues reported 30 recommendations on the priority areas of the conference. On Voluntary Commitments, we received our 500th registration this morning.
20 June 2012Today marks an historic occasion. The Conference was officially opened by the United Nations Secretary-General. The President of Brazil was elected President of the Conference by acclimation, and delivered a short statement. Prior to the opening of the conference, a 17-year old winner of the Date with History competition, Ms. Brittany Trilford, addressed world leaders. The ceremonial opening of the conference begins this afternoon, and we will have a special viewing of footage from the international space station, to be followed by the start of Round Table 1. The outcome document on The Future We Want has been agreed ad ref by all delegations, and will be adopted at the closing of the Conference on Friday. I share the general assessment that the text of the outcome document is balanced, focused on action and represents a strong official outcome of the Conference. On Voluntary Commitments, we have received an additional 38 commitments from the private sector arising from the Corporate Sustainability Forum organized by the UN Global Compact, as well as commitments by over 40 universities. This brings us to a total of 487 registered commitments.
19 June 2012I am pleased to join the host government of Brazil in announcing that the negotiations have come to a successful conclusion. We now have a text which will be adopted at the Conference. I wish to emphasize that we are highly appreciative of the leadership of the Brazilian government, and the inclusive consultative manner in which it has led the consultations. We think the text contains a lot of action. And, if this action is implemented, and if follow-up measures are taken, it will indeed make a tremendous difference in generating positive global change. Of course, this document is the product of intensive protracted negotiations. And therefore, it is a compromise text. Like all negotiations, there will be some countries that feel the text could be more ambitious. Or, others who feel their own proposals could be better reflected. While still others might prefer to have their own language. But, let' s be clear: multilateral negotiations require give and take. The spirit of compromise is the mark of a good consensus, and crucial if all countries are to be on board, take ownership, and share a collective commitment. This is the only way forward if we want to harness the necessary action for advancing together on a path of sustainable development. And personally, I am very pleased that delegations have come together for the success of the conference and for the future we want. I am also pleased to announce that we have this morning reached the 400 mark on the registry of voluntary commitments.
18 June 2012Negotiations are going smoothly. We are nearing the conclusion of the consultations on the text. Brazilian-led consultations have brought an accelerated and constructive dynamic to the negotiating process. The text that is on the table has been well received. Minor adjustments may still be introduced, but I am reasonably optimistic that we will be able to conclude negotiations as scheduled. I appeal to all delegations to join forces - to show flexibility and a spirit of compromise so we can deliver the future we want.
16 June 2012The third session of the PrepCom concluded last night. There was encouraging progress made by splinter groups on the text. The PrepCom decided that the negotiation process would be handed over to the Government of Brazil, who would conduct pre-conference consultations on the basis of the text emerging from the PrepCom. The Host Government announced that the consultation process will conclude on the 18th of June. It will then submit the agreed text to the conference for adoption. Regarding the registry of voluntary commitments: we continue to receive a steady stream of registrations, with 23 new commitments since yesterday. This brings us to a total of 281.
15 June 2012Day three of the PrepCom: Negotiations are continuing in the splinter groups, with slow but steady progress. Delegates are focusing on bridging differences on many issues, and committed to clearing as much text as possible today. I continue to stress the need to keep in mind the big picture. I am confident that, once some of the more complicated issues are resolved, such as reaffirmation of Rio principles, means of implementation, and ecosystem services, then a host of other paragraphs will be cleared. Regarding the registry of voluntary commitments: In the past 24 hours, the Secretariat received a further 29 registrations of voluntary commitments. This brings us to a total of 258. We welcome further registrations of commitments from all stakeholders and organizations, including tangible actions arising from side events.
14 June 2012Day two of the PrepCom: Consultations on the outcome document are continuing in the 10 splinter groups. While some progress is being made and delegates are working hard, they have been urged by the co-Chairs to accelerate the pace of negotiations with a sense of urgency. I have appealed to negotiators to focus on the big picture, the must-haves, and to rise above narrow and short-term interests. As of today, the Secretariat has received 229 registered voluntary commitments. Of this total number, 159 commitments are on Education, 27 on Sustainable Energy, 10 on Sustainable Cities, and 6 on Sustainable Transport." [The full list of registered commitments is published at SD in Action.]