New York Third Intersessional Meeting : Day Two
The day started with a meeting for civil society to express their concerns to the Bureau of the Rio+20 conference. Civil society groups expressed concerns about governments bracketing issues related to human rights and equity principles. There is an open letter for signature entitled Rights at Risk at the United Nations which can be accessed at http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/rightsatrisk/ and if you want to hear and see how angry civil society is, ....
check out this press conference: http://www.unmultimedia.org/tv/webcast/2012/03/press-conference-civil-society-organizations-on-negotiations-for-rio20.html. In between sessions I managed to go to an interesting event where Alicia Barcena, Executive Secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean presented a report on sustainable development trends in that region during the last 20 years. She suggested that Rio+20 should focus on concrete issues like empowering people to be part of decision making; invest in public transportation; implement the financial transaction tax (for every financial transaction, a small percentage would go into helping developing countries achieve sustainable development.) Her eloquence and enthusiasm were a breath of fresh air from the tedious negotiations.
In the plenary, the G77 kept on getting nervous every time the word “green” came up and developed countries made it clear that they will not put their money where their mouth is. The meeting ended with a proposal by the co-chairs that they would provide a more “mainstreamed” version of the document which will help during the 20 days left of negotiations. To be continued.