June 23, 2012 by Binoy Kampmark
It was a very busy conference, or at the very least, a very crowded one. 100 heads of state and government formed the head of 40,000 delegates which was meant to hammer out a plan for sustainable development in the 21st century at Rio de Janeiro.
The UN statement on the meeting called it a “historic opportunity to define pathways to a safer, more equitable, cleaner, greener and more prosperous world for all.”
June 23, 2012 by Anis Bajrektarevic
Back to the good old days of the Lisbon Strategy (when the Union was proclaimed to be the most competitive, knowledge-based economy of the world), the Prodi and Barroso Commissions have both repeatedly stressed, “at present, some of our world trading partners compete with primary resources, which we in the EU/Europe do not have. Some compete with cheap labor, which we do not want. Some compete on the back of their environment, which we cannot accept.”
The over-financialization and hyper-deregulations of globalized markets has brought the low-waged Chinese worker into the spotlight of European consideration. Thus, in the last two decades, the EU economic edifice has gradually but steadily departed from its traditional labor-centered, to an overseas investment-centered construct.
This event, as we see now with the Eurozone dithyramb, has multiple consequences on both the European inner cultural, socio-economic and political balances as well as on China’s (overheated) growth.
June 23, 2012 by Dominique de Wit
The largest United Nations’ conference to date took place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil from June 20th to the 22nd to discuss the world’s path toward sustainable development. The conference was a follow up to the historic 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), also known as the Earth Summit that was held shortly after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, at a time that the world was radiant with hope for reform and cooperation within the international community.
At the 1992 Earth Summit, the principal concept implemented was that of “sustainable development,” a global policy initiative designed to restructure economic growth, advance social equity, and ensure environmental protections for current generations, as well as for those to come. Unfortunately, the last twenty years have not demonstrated the desired implementation of sustainable development among states. Sustainability issues, such as climate change, biodiversity loss, access to basic necessities, and poverty remain existent.
The Rio+20 conference presented an opportunity to reassess the commitments made two decades ago and formulate alternative solutions to pressing social and environmental problems that have become ever more urgent.