For Media

Hotels for Press
Accommodation levels in Rio de Janeiro are anticipated to be at full occupancy during the conference. While it is not the responsibility of the United Nations to procure accommodation for the media, it should be noted that the Brazilian national organizing committee for Rio+20 has committed to blocking a minimum of 500 hotel rooms in Rio de Janeiro for media covering the conference. Costs must be covered by the media. For more details, visit: http://www.rio20.gov.br For information regarding room availability please contact: Terramar Travel Agency

Emails: reservas2@terramar.tur.br or reservas4@terramar.tur.br or reservas8@terramar.tur.br

Tel: (+55+21) 35120067 or (+55+11) 30142042 or (+55+19) 35145600

Media representatives must present their approval letter and copy rio20.hoteis@itamaraty.gov.br when requesting their accommodations.

Information

Will it be worth flying down to Rio in 2012?
You know you're getting old when meaningful anniversaries celebrate things that happened before at least some of your colleagues were born. And 2012 will see a blizzard of such milestones, including the fortieth anniversary of the Limits to Growth study in 1972, the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Brundtland Commission report, Our Common Future (which began the mainstreaming of the sustainability agenda) and ? the big one ? the twentieth anniversary of the 1992 UN Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro (Rio+20).

Let's start with Limits. The study had a massive impact at the time of publication, particularly in the teeth of the Arab and OPEC oil shocks, but after a while the media interest and political influence faded. The idea that we were running out of natural resources was undermined by new oil finds and energetic counter-arguments.

But the thing that really worries me, at least in terms of at least one of those 2012 milestones, is that the UN series of summits on environment, climate change and sustainability that started out so energetically in 1972 with the first UN Stockholm conference seems to be running out of steam ? potentially to the point of irrelevance.

Clearly a great deal of work will be done ahead of June, but my sense is that the political processes needed to produce real action have not engaged in the way they did ahead of the 1992 Earth Summit ? and, while I may be wrong, I am also picking up signs that business is way less interested than it was way back then.

But something is going to have to give if we are to get wider buy-in to truly sustainable development.

That doesn't mean that the exercise is pointless ? on the contrary, it is desperately important that we convene, debate and consider how we might get to the point where a critical mass of countries would set themselves the sort of stretch targets needed to tackle the security issues outlined above. But for the moment, in an era of jellyfish leadership, we will need to look elsewhere for solutions.
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