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Au Sommet de la Terre de Rio en 1992, le Canada était un chef de file alors que le Canadien Maurice Strong, Secrétaire général de la conférence, nommait Désirée McGraw l’une des deux ambassadrices mondiales de la jeunesse. Vingt ans plus tard, lors du Sommet Rio+20 ayant eu lieu en juin dernier, la délégation canadienne a logé dans le quartier de Copacabana, à deux heures de bus du centre de conférence. Réservations retardataires par manque d’intérêt, ou les pays obstructionnistes méritent-ils moins de sommeil ? De toute façon, la délégation officielle du gouvernement fédéral, sous l’égide de Peter Kent, Ministre de l’environnement, s’est montrée glaciale face aux ONG. Une régression évidente d’il y a 20 ans.
We Canada consultations report The Future Canadians Want, 2012, Executive Summary.
From January 28 to March 27 2012, We Canada visited 16 cities across the country, consulting Canadians from every region on sustainable development issues in the lead up to Earth Summit 2012. The purpose of these consultations was to gather the insights, opinions, and aspirations of Canadians and to carry them forward to the Government of Canada, the provincial, territorial and municipal governments, and the international community.
We Canada serves as a voice for Canadians who believe sustainable development should be a priority for their country and for the international community. It aims to increase civil society’s participation and representation in policy-making on the national and global stage in the lead up to the upcoming United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD, Earth Summit 2012 or Rio+20) in June 2012. Continue reading
We Canada has been in Rio de Janeiro. Brazil, for a few days now at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development government negotiations, also known as Earth Summit 2012 or Rio+20. However, our work to mobilize Canadian citizens for their input in the process goes two years back. Continue reading
RIO DE JANEIRO—The twenty-year anniversary of the 1992 Earth Summit on sustainable development also marks another defining moment in history: the first joint press conference with the iconic father-daughter duo, Severn Cullis-Suzuki and Dr. David Suzuki.
Rio de Janeiro/Ottawa – Following Peter Kent’s statement to Canadian and international media and his address to the Rio+20 plenary, Canadians in Rio and back home issued the following statements.
“Canada has been trampling our rights here in Rio and back home by expanding the controversial tar sands into our homeland and poisoning our water, air and earth, and negotiating on their behalf here at Rio+20. Continue reading
I’ve travelled this world time and time again. By train, plane, bus and car, discovering the entertaining, beautiful and cultural options the many diverse countries have to offer.
At the end of every trip, I relished in the warmth that home brings—that Canada brings. In an aching attempt to imagine a world where I hadn’t a home as beautiful as this, I now fear the country I represent.
Peter Kent, Minister of Environment for Canada, in his plenary address at Rio+20, June 22, 2012: “we believe the best way to proceed is to agree on global targets that allow Member States to achieve their own ideal balance of economic growth, social and environmental protection….to work together to create new and practical solutions that support environmental sustainability and economic growth.”
Dr. David Suzuki in a press conference, June 21, 2012: “Nothing could be more destructive than the triple bottom line. Who would ever say that the economy is as big as society, and that society is as big as the environment? That’s suicidal.”
Among the seven main issues that are to be reviewed during Rio+20, including access to energy, jobs and sustainable agriculture, the current state and future of oceans worldwide is a serious concern today. Scientists, environmentalists, activists and concerned individuals realize the seriousness of protecting our ocean and the vital role they play in our everyday life.
RIO DE JANEIRO—civil society was louder than ever in RioCentro today, June 21, as the final negotiations of the 2012 Earth Summit on sustainable development met its halfway mark.
Both Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon and head of the Brazilian delegation Ambassador André Corrêa do Lago have praised Rio+20 for its “process” of including civil society participation by nine major groups—from NGOs to indigenous peoples, children and youth to workers and trade unions, women to business and industry. However, what Ban calls a new beginning, a significant portion of the citizen voice at RioCentro begs to differ.
RIO DE JANEIRO–Today marks the first day of final negotiations of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In a press briefing after the opening plenary this morning, Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon spoke to civil society’s potential to launch a new beginning for a sustainable future, starting here in Rio.
“The outcome of this conference is so much more than a document,” Ban said. “It is about the extraordinary momentum that is being generated.”
So what exactly does civil society want to see accomplished at Rio+20?
For starters, many are calling for negotiators to deliver on phasing out fossil fuel subsidies. Global subsidies for fossil fuels reach nearly 1 trillion US dollars per year—that’s an awesome 1300 dollars in profit per second. Companies receiving these subsidies remain the most paid in history, while many of which actively prevent climate change progress through their own lobby groups and blockage of legislation. Significantly, the world invests 12 times more—approximately 775 against 66 billion dollars—in subsidies for fossil fuel than for renewables.