The results of the “Bonn2011 Conference: The Water, Energy and Food Security Nexus – Solutions for a Green Economy” have been published in the form of a conference synopsis and set of policy recommendations.The conference, which took place from 16-18 November 2011, in Bonn, Germany, was attended by over 500 participants and was organized to facilitate the creation of a specific German contribution to the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD, or Rio+20).

Many MPs are sceptical that great progress will be made at this June's global summit on sustainable development.

Speaking in a House of Commons debate yesterday, Martin Caton, a member of the Environmental Audit Committee, said: "A real danger in the run-up to Rio is that ambitions will be diminished by the global economic crisis, that we will return to the old, sterile, economy versus environment agenda, and that in practice governments will choose to define a green economy as 'full steam ahead but with a bit of environmental window dressing".

The world’s corporations are increasingly adopting a more sustainable course of doing business, a senior United Nations official said today, but voiced concern that participation was still lagging below expectations ahead of a major forum on corporate sustainability in Rio de Janeiro in June.

With the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) scheduled to take place in June, discussions on a more sustainable development agenda have been on-going at international level. Suggestions for accelerating sustainable development include the introduction of the Millennium Consumption Goals (MCGs) that are to hold developed countries responsible for their over-consumption and unsustainable production patterns.

HOW CAN WE MEASURE PROGRESS?
EARTH DEBATES – FLAGSHIP EVENT SERIES IN PREPARATION OF RIO+20

edfullcolourwebLondon – 22nd February, 2012 – Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is a universal measure of a country’s economic activity and output, yet it takes no account of the appreciation or deprecation of a country’s building infrastructure, or of the condition of its natural resources and the ecosystem services provided by the environment, such as crop pollination. Furthermore, GDP provides no measure of the health, wealth, or wellbeing of a country’s population, or how these are distributed across society.

The need to prioritize sustainability has never been more urgent than it is today. This is particularly true in emerging markets, which are entering a period of mass urbanization that could dramatically raise productivity and standards of living, but that also poses environmental and other threats that could significantly reduce the benefits of growth.