The Future We Don’t Want
Renata Soares Piazzon
Environmental Department Lawyer of
Machado, Meyer, Sendacz e Opice law firm
The official document resulted from the negotiation process of the heads of State and Government and high-level representatives during the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20), entitled The Future We Want, is marked by fragile and generic actions for the sustainable development.
The Conference focused on two themes: a green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication; and the institutional framework for sustainable development.
However, the document, structured with the verbs “recognize”, “reinforce”, “encourage”, “reiterate” and “emphasize”, is full of vague actions and encompasses serious omissions.
That being said, the commitment to sustainable development and for ensuring the promotion of an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable future for our planet and for present and future generations was not secured by urgent actions, but by nonspecific agendas.
Also, the objective of the Conference, to identify the remaining gaps in the implementation of the outcomes of the sustainable development and address emerging challenges, was only generically as a serious action to be taken.
Amongst the commitments of such document, the representatives expressed that eradication of poverty and hunger is a matter of urgency, yet, although recognized that the 20 years since the Rio 92 have seen uneven progress in most of poverty indices, no urgent plan to accelerate the achievement of the development goals was defined.
In addition, it is worth stressing that the requirement of urgent and ambitious action and a call for holistic and integrated approaches to sustainable development to guide humanity to live in harmony with nature were not an innovation brought by the Rio+20 and falls far short of the importance of the issues addressed.
The Rio+20 will be historically known as a Conference of recognitions and promises - recognition of failure to accelerate progress in closing development gaps between developed and developing countries; recognition that, since 1992, there have been areas of insufficient progress; recognition that one in five people on this planet still live in extreme poverty; and recognition that the scale and gravity of the negative impacts of climate change affect all countries - with no commitment and action.