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CREATING A MORE EFFECTIVE SYSTEM OF ENVIRONMENTAL AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOVERNANCE
19 Mar 2012 - 19 Mar 2012
6:15 PM - 7:45 PM

Conference Room A, UN, NY, NY

PANELISTS:

Rob Wheeler, UN Representative: Global Ecovillage Network and Commons Action for the UN; BoardMember, CCCUN; Chair of WATUN

Lucy Webster, International Council: World Federalist Movement and Executive Director, Center for War/Peace Studies

Benton Musslewhite, International Environmental Trial Lawyer; President of One World Now; Vice President, WATUN

Quizia Gonzales, UN Representative: International Union of Land Value Taxation, Henry George School, and Commons Action for the UN

Elise Ruggeri Abonnat, Program Officer: Islands First and the International Centre of Comparative Environmental Law (CIDCE)

Catherine Pearce, Future Justice Manager: World Future Council and Coordinator, Ombudspersons for Future Generations NGO Cluster

FOLLOWED BY AN INTERACTIVE DISCUSSION SESSION

This session will focus on the need to strengthen and democratize the institutional framework for an emerging global system of sustainable development governance. We will address the need to uplevel UNEP into an implementing and regulating agency and to transform the UN Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) into a Council with binding and enforceable coordinating powers. In addition we will introduce the idea of establishing a Convention on EcoCide; an International Environmental Court; Ombudspersons for Future Generations; a Sustainable Development Board within the UN system; Greening the International Financial Institutions; and including Local Authorities in Sustainable Development Governance.

We will also suggest that UNEP, the Global Environment Facility, and CSD need both increased levels and secure funding, which could come from several new and innovative sources of finance such as: carbon taxes, a portion of a currency transaction levies.user fees on the global commons, and land value taxation. In addition we would recommend that CSD adopt an Outcome Based Process; and that both UNEP and CSD agree to make decisions either by a qualified majority (such as a 2/3rds vote) or using a weighted voting system like the Binding Triad.

While addressing the need to create a Green Economy and eradicate poverty, we will make the case that while billions of people lack access to food, clean water, basic sanitation, educational opportunities, electricity, decent shelter, healthcare, etc. the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states emphatically that everyone has the right to food, shelter, jobs, education, healthcare; life, liberty, and security; etc. In addition, Article 28 says that everyone is entitled to a Social and International order sufficient to achieve and provide these basic human rights. And the preamble says that it is the responsibility of every individual and organ of society to take progressive measures, both national and international, to achieve these rights.

Recognizing that none of these rights can be fulfilled without addressing such emerging issues as access to clean water and sanitation, energy, food, and a healthy, sustainable environment, etc. we will suggest that the various covenants and protocols on human rights must be universal in nature and binding and enforceable on all. Similarly, the UN must be strengthened and democratized so as to be able to provide the International and Social Order that is guaranteed to us all through the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the UN Charter, and many other UN treaties and agreements.

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