There were a number of key events and milestones in the run-up to the UN General Assembly Resolution that called for the Summit in December 2009. As Stakeholder Forum advocated strongly for a Summit and was involved in many of the discussions leading to the resolution, we made a record of the key moments.

28th May 2009: In a letter to Tariq Bunari, Director of the Division for Sustainable Development (DSD) within UN DESA, the Czech Republic on behalf of the European Union has announced that it is ‘open to discuss, with the wider UN membership, the UN Secretariat and all other relevant stakeholders, the possibility of convening a high level event on sustainable development.

June 28th –July 2nd 2009, Glion, Switzerland: The Global Environmental Governance Forum: Reflecting on the Past, Moving into the Future, hosted by the Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy and the College of William and Mary brought together a range of leading thinkers in the field of environmental and sustainable development governance.

July 2009: Meetings were held throughout July in Washington DC to bring together a range of stakeholders to discuss and share ideas on the possible focus of a Rio+20 Earth Summit in 2012. International NGO Justice and Sustainability held a meeting on 6th July, which was followed by a meeting on 7th July hosted by US-based Natural Resources Defence Council.

6th- 7th Sept 2009: In a statement issued after a State visit by France to Brazil on 6th – 7th September 2009, Nicolas Sarkozy has announced France’s support for an Earth Summit in 2012. The statement welcomes the strengthening in relations between Brazil and France, with both countries as actors in a ‘new global governance’. In this spirit, the statement highlights the opportunity afforded by an Earth Summit in 2012 to address global environmental governance.  


21st September 2009: In a joint letter to the UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy have suggested that the ‘broad lines of agreement’ for Copenhagen need to be ‘clarified’. In particular they call for consensus on limiting global temperature increase to below pre-industrial levels, cutting GHG emissions by 50% on 1990 levels by 2050.

29th September 2009: A number of prominent civil society organisations have come together to deliver a letter to President Obama urging him to support the current proposal before the United Nations to host an Earth Summit in Brazil in 2012. Representing more than a million Americans, the group has invited Obama ‘to see the Summit as an opportunity to consolidate the gains made in your first Administration towards sustainable development and to catalyze actions worldwide to build a new green global prosperity’.


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