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  • Published on: 25 Apr 2012
  • Submitted by: Ibon International

Roundtable Discussion on Rights at Risk in the Green Economy
Presented by IBON International, Council of Canadians, Peoples Coalition for Food Sovereignty, France Libertes, Roots for Equity, Global Forest Coalition, Food and Water Watch, Third World Network, Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy

This event, moderated by Anil Naidoo, Council of Canadians, discussed the current round of negotiations on the zero draft of the outcomes document for Rio+20, and strategized on how to link campaigning efforts ?outside? with lobbying efforts ?inside? and vice versa.

Chee Yoke Ling, Third World Network (TWN), outlined the civil society call for reaffirming the Rio Principles, saying that the current dialogue in the negotiations may either dilute the Rio Principles or ?rewrite? them. She cautioned against possible Sustainable Development Goals being implemented as a solution for sustainable development.

Marcos Orellana, Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL), noted the call for the Human Rights Council (HRC) to provide a human rights perspective for the Rio+20 negotiations. He lamented that despite the involvement of the HRC, many references to human rights and human rights principles are still being bracketed in the negotiating text.

Melinda Ching Simon, Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), urged for Member States? commitments to be made without undermining or disrespecting human rights and called for the outcomes of Rio+20 to be grounded in the rule of law.

Andre Abreu de Almeida, Frances Libertes Foundation, lauded a G-77/China proposal for the zero draft to differentiate between rights to water and access to water, as rights to services are a separate issue that need to be considered in an ethical manner. Anita Nayar, Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN), called for separating the debate on environmental degradation from the debate on population growth.

In the ensuing discussion, participants debated: social protection floors; the need for decent jobs; the use of law to promote sustainable development implementation; the rights of Mother Earth being included in final outcomes of Rio+20; disregarding the right to development; and the need for action beyond Rio+20.

In closing, Chee Yoke Ling, lamented that the debate is moving away from the complexity of sustainable development, noting that human rights are integral to sustainable development.

More information:

Paul Quintos
Anil Naidoo

[Special thanks to IISD Reporting Services,]
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