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Earth Summit 2002 and The Generations Game

This week sees the final stages of Earth Summit 2002 being held in Johannesburg, South Africa, 26 August to 6 September. The full title is United Nations World Summit on Sustainable Development. The sponsoring division of the UN is the Commission for Sustainable Development (or UN CSD). A definition adopted by the UN for sustainable development is:

"meets the needs of present generations without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs"

Summits come and go and it's hard to keep track of their focus and purpose. Much talk but not much united action. It all gets back to what current generations are prepared to give up. A brief summary of the events which seem to have been a significant focus of political pressure points for "doing something about the environment" are as follows:

1962- "Silent Spring" published by Rachel Carson

1972- UN Conference on Human Environment (Stockholm)

1972- "The Limits to Growth" published by Meadows et al and Club of Rome

1979- China enforces "One Child" policy

1992- UN Conference on Environment and Development (Rio de Janeiro)

1992- UN Framework Convention on Climate Change

1997- Kyoto Protocol

Posted Monday, 2 September 2002


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