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In 2002 the representatives of 191 governments gathered in Johannesburg, South Africa for the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD), with the aim of examining the progress made on the outcomes of the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio, and also to reinvigorate the world’s peoples toward true sustainable development.  The result was a 54 page agreement divided into 11 sections on a specific focus.

The Plan of Implementation set out specific timetable to address some issues including reducing the rate of loss of biodiversity by 2010 and halve the number of people without access to drinking water by 2015. The Johannesburg Plan of Implementation strengthened the role of the Commission on Sustainable Development in continuing international oversight monitoring progress on sustainability agreements.