Information
  • Lead-organizer: Czech Republic
  • 13:00 - 14:30
  • Date: 21 Jun 2012
  • Room: P3-A

Measuring a Green Economy: Insights into "Beyond GDP" Indicators

Organizing partners

The Czech Republic, Ministry of the Environment ? lead organizer
Global Footprint Network
European Environment Agency
Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development

Introduction

The side event will provide an incisive and highly original up-to-date contribution to the ongoing discussions on indicators relevant for measuring progress of transition to a green economy in the context of ?Beyond GDP? initiatives. It will be opened by Minister of the Environment of the Czech Republic, Mr Tomá? Chalupa, to be followed by presentations of eminent experts of the leading international organizations, agencies, think-tanks and academia, such as the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, the European Environment Agency, the Global Footprint Network and the Charles University in Prague. The side event´s ambition is to highlight one of the key expected elements of the Rio+20 outcome document, i.e. reliable measuring methods as a prerequisite for responsible and informed policy decision-making.

Detailed programme

Aim of side-event:
It will present and discuss strategies and indicators relevant for sustainable development and green economy concepts, ecological limits as well as well-being needs. Current challenges in promoting green growth and green economy in the context of global megatrends, ecological footprints and human well-being will be shared with the audience to prepare important messages for Rio+20 participants.

Structure and focus:
It will consist of short keynote speeches by organizing partners to be followed by a panel discussion, inviting participants to share the sustainability indicators perspectives on green economy with the presenters.
The Czech Environment Minister, Mr. Tomas Chalupa will open the event, followed by the introduction of Prof. Bedrich Moldan (Charles University in Prague). Their presentations will benefit from up-to-date reports on ?Green Growth in the Czech Republic? and ?Progress Report on the Czech Republic´s Sustainable Development Strategy?.

Global Footprint Network will present current trends in the Ecological Footprint and Biocapacity accounting and links to financial crunch in the context of the resource-limited world. GFN together with UNEP FI has launched a project to investigate the linkages between ecological risk and sovereign credit ratings and bonds. GFN will also present current assessment of the impact of human resource use on global biodiversity, envisaged in the Living Planet Report 2012.

European Environment Agency will present the integrated assessment of global megatrends and its impact on environment and resources use, based on the assessment of future impacts on Europe´s environment of global megatrends, which is the subject of the latest State of the Environment Report and underpins Signals 2011.

Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development will present current work on green growth, including strategic targets and indicators and Better Life Index and Towards Green Growth strategy, which provides a practical framework for governments in developed and developing countries to seize economic and environmental opportunities.

Participants and speakers:
Charles University in Prague, Environment Center, founded in 1992, conducts environmental research and provides environmental expertise and information for the students and staff of the University as well as the general public. It collaborates with parliamentary bodies, state administration, non-governmental organizations and many academic and research institutions both locally and globally.
Professor Bedrich Moldan, Director of Environment Center, was elected Vice-chair of the Bureau of the Preparatory Committee for the Rio+20 Conference. He also succeeded in using his wide-ranging expertise in political engagement, being the first Environment Minister of the Czech Republic (1990-1991) and Senator of the Parliament of the Czech Republic (2004-2010).

Global Footprint Network was established in 2003 as non-profit organization promoting the use of the Ecological Footprint, a resource accounting tool that measures the available global biocapacity, Ecological Footprints of nations, and distribution of ecological debt. GFN is working with hundreds of individuals, 200 cities, 23 nations, leading business, scientists, NGO?s, academics and 90-plus global Partners spanning six continents.
Mr. Kyle Gracey contributes to applications of and improvements to the Ecological Footprint standards. Before joining GFN, he has worked at the White House, Worldwatch Institute, U.S. Departments of Transportation and the Treasury, Carnegie Mellon University, and other consulting and advisory boards.

European Environment Agency, an agency of the European Union, was established in 1993 to gather, interpret and communicate sound information about the European environment in order to support informed decision-making. It has also an important role to play in developing the knowledge base on a green economy.
Professor Jacqueline M. McGlade is Executive Director of the EEA in Copenhagen. Her research has been focusing on the spatial and nonlinear dynamics of ecosystems, climate change and scenario development.

The mission of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development is to promote policies that will improve the economic and social well-being of people around the world. OECD works with governments to understand what drives economic, social and environmental change. In parallel, OECD is looking for ways to foster and support new sources of growth through innovation, environmentally friendly green growth strategies and the development of emerging economies.
Mrs. Nathalie Girouard is the Green Growth Strategy Co-ordinator at OECD Economics department. Her research fields are associated with consumption behaviour, housing markets, mortgage markets and their effects on the wider economy. Before joining the OECD, she was a staff member at the Research Department of the Bank of Canada.

Potential contribution to Rio+20:
The zero draft ?Future We Want? recognizes the limitations of GDP as a measure of well-being. Delegations at Rio+20 may wish to agree to further develop and strengthen indicators complementing GDP that integrate economic, social and environmental dimensions in a balanced manner. A green economy requires indicators which would assess whether human well-being is improving while ecological wealth is not declining. Potential contribution to Rio+20 is to provide means and tools for the assessment of progress in transition towards a green economy and ?Beyond GDP?.
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