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5 Rio Documents

1.Rio Declaration on Environment and Development

2.Agenda 21
Chapter 1 - Preamble
Section 1 - Social & Economic Dimensions
Section 2 - Conservation and Management of Resources
Section 3 - Strengthening the Role of Major Groups
Section 4 - Means of Implementation

3.Statement of principles to guide the management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests

4.United Nations Framework Convention On Climate Change

5.Convention on Biological Diversity



Agenda 21

Agenda 21 explains that population, consumption and technology are the primary driving forces of environmental change. It lays out what needs to be done to reduce wasteful and inefficient consumption patterns in some parts of the world while encouraging increased but sustainable development in others. It offers policies and programmes to achieve a sustainable balance between consumption, population and the Earth’s life-supporting capacity. It describes some of technologies and techniques that need to be developed to provide for human needs while carefully managing natural resources.

Agenda 21 provides options for combating degradation of the land, air and water, conserving forests and the diversity of species of life. It deals with poverty and excessive consumption, health and education, cities and farmers. There are roles for everyone: governments, business people, trade unions, scientists, teachers, indigenous people, women, youth and children. Agenda 21 does not shun business. It says that sustainable development is the way to reverse both poverty and environmental destruction.

We currently gauge the success of economic development mainly by the amount of money it produces. Accounting systems that measure the wealth of nations also need to count the full value of natural resources and the full cost of environmental degradation. The polluter should, in principle, bear the costs of pollution. To reduce the risk of causing damage, environmental assessment should be carried out before starting projects that carry the risk of adverse impacts. Governments should reduce or eliminate subsidies that are not consistent with sustainable development.

A major theme of Agenda 21 is the need to eradicate poverty by giving poor people more access to the resources they need to live sustainably. By adopting Agenda 21, industrialized countries recognized that they have a greater role in cleaning up the environment than poor nations, who produce relatively less pollution. The richer nations also promised more funding to help other nations develop in ways that have lower environmental impacts. Beyond funding, nations need help in building the expertise— the capacity— to plan and carry out sustainable development decisions. This will require the transfer of information and skills.

Agenda 21 calls on governments to adopt national strategies for sustainable development. These should be developed with wide participation, including non-government organizations and the public. Agenda 21 puts most of the responsibility for leading change on national governments, but says they need to work in a broad series of partnerships with international organizations, business, regional, state, provincial and local governments, non-governmental and citizens’ groups.

As Agenda 21 says, only a global partnership will ensure that all nations will have a safer and more prosperous future.



Chapter 1:Preamble
Section One: Social and Economic Dimensions
Chapter 2: International Cooperation
Chapter 3: Combating Poverty
Chapter 4: Changing Consumption Patterns
Chapter 5: Population and Sustainable Development
Chapter 6: Protecting and Promoting Human Health
Chapter 7: Sustainable Human Settlements
Chapter 8: Making Decisions for Sustainable Development
Section Two: Conservation and Management of Resources
Chapter 9: Protecting the Atmosphere
Chapter 10: Managing Land Sustainably
Chapter 11: Combating Deforestation
Chapter 12: Combating Desertification and Drought
Chapter 13: Sustainable Mountain Development
Chapter 14: Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development
Chapter 15: Conservation of Biological Diversity
Chapter 16: Environmentally Sound Management of Biotechnology
Chapter 17: Protecting and Managing the Oceans
Chapter 18: Protecting and Managing Fresh Water
Chapter 19: Safer Use of Toxic Chemicals
Chapter 20: Managing Hazardous Wastes
Chapter 21: Managing Solid Wastes and Sewage
Chapter 22: Managing Radioactive Wastes
Section Three: Strengthening the Role of Major Groups
Chapter 23: Preamble to Strengthening the Role of Major Groups
Chapter 24: Women in Sustainable Development
Chapter 25: Children and Youth in Sustainable Development
Chapter 26: Strengthening the Role of Indigenous People
Chapter 27: Partnerships with NGOs
Chapter 28: Local Authorities
Chapter 29: Workers and Trade Unions
Chapter 30: Business and Industry
Chapter 31: Scientists and Technologists
Section Four: Means of Implementation
Chapter 32: Strengthening the Role of Farmers
Chapter 33: Financing Sustainable Development
Chapter 34: Technology Transfer
Chapter 35: Science for Sustainable Development
Chapter 36: Education, Training and Public Awareness
Chapter 37: Creating the Capacity for Sustainable Development
Chapter 38: Organizing for Sustainable Development
Chapter 39: International Law
Chapter 40: Information for Decision-Making