The UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), Co-chairs of the Global Thematic Consultation on Environmental Sustainability in the Post-2015 Development Agenda, have released their summary of the Leadership Meeting that took place in San José, Costa Rica, on 18-19 March 2013.
12 April 2013: The UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), Co-chairs of the Global Thematic Consultation on Environmental Sustainability in the Post-2015 Development Agenda, have released their summary of the Leadership Meeting that took place in San José, Costa Rica, on 18-19 March 2013.
The meeting brought together 88 representatives from intergovernmental organizations, the private sector, civil society, governments and the UN system. Participants reviewed the results of the first phase of the Consultation, which included discussion note submissions and e-discussions. The Co-chairs Summary reviews the meeting’s discussions, highlighting areas where a consensus was reached, as well as areas where further dialogue and thinking is needed. These areas will frame the second phase of the thematic consultation, the summary notes.
the summary indicates that among areas of consensus, participants emphasized environmental sustainability as a “guiding principle of sustainability and human well-being” and not as ancillary to development. The need to fully integrate environmental sustainability in the post-2015 development agenda, to address governance issues such as linking human rights and environmental sustainability, to promote accountability through empowering civil society groups and increasing engagement of the private sector, and to better integrate local action in national and global decision-making processes was also stressed.
The summary adds that: transformational change was consistently called for, in order to realize a “completely different way to innovate, collaborate, build institutions, measure progress, and be accountable;” inter-linkages and connections must characterize the post-2015 development agenda; and “drivers of change” – such as good governance and inclusive decision-making processes, focusing on education, building local capacity and empowering local action and using the right incentives to influence environmental sustainability – are key. It also underlines the need to provide adequate framing and criteria for the post-2015 development agenda in terms of environmental sustainability and for measurement and monitoring.
The summary also outlines areas where further dialogue and thinking is needed, as reflected in discussions at the leadership meeting. These key issues will frame the second phase of the thematic consultation through three distinct e-discussions.
The first, on “Unpacking key inter-linkages and principles,” relates to addressing inter-linkages between environmental sustainability and poverty reduction, equality, and human rights, peace and security. The second, on “Moving towards transformational change,” addresses the role of the private sector and markets to change existing economic growth models, and education for sustainable development and changing behaviors. Finally, “Translating global commons and universal agenda to local action and context” focuses on country context and typologies, and on local empowerment.
E-discussions on the three topics will take place from 15 April-26 May, following which the consultation co-hosts and co-leads will synthesize inputs and issue the final report of the global thematic consultation, expected in June 2013.
Along with UNDP and UNEP, the Consultation was co-hosted by the Governments of Costa Rica and France. Environmental Sustainability is one of the 11 themes being addressed on a global level by the UN Development Group’s (UNDG) consultations on the post-2015 development agenda. [Publication: Co-chairs Summary] [IISD RS Meeting Coverage] [Environmental Sustainability Consultation Website]