Earth Negotiations Bulletin

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 A Reporting Service for Environment and Development Negotiations

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Published by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)

Vol. 05 No. 121
Monday, 08 March 1999

CSD INTERSESSIONAL AD HOC WORKING GROUPS:

22 FEBRUARY - 5 MARCH 1999

The Commission on Sustainable Development’s Intersessional Ad Hoc Working Groups (ISWGs) met from 22 February-5 March 1999 at UN Headquarters in New York. The ISWG on sustainable consumption and production patterns and tourism met during the first week and the ISWG on oceans and seas and the sustainable development of Small Island Developing State (SIDS) met during the second week. The outcomes of the ISWGs were Co-Chairs’ summaries of discussion and elements for draft CSD decisions on sustainable consumption and production patterns, tourism, and oceans and seas, as well as draft proposals on CSD’s contribution to the upcoming Special Session of the General Assembly on SIDS.

At the ISWGs, delegations were invited to abandon their “high- sounding” outputs in favor of recommendations for modest and realistic actions at CSD-7. CSD-7 Chair Simon Upton and the CSD Bureau introduced a new approach to the preparation of drafts, to encourage an early focus on key issues. In the period leading up to CSD-7, the Secretariat is expected to maintain efforts to keep delegates focused on draft elements for decisions produced at the ISWGs.

A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE CSD

The Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) was envisioned in Agenda 21, the programme of action adopted by the 1992 UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). Agenda 21 called for the creation of the CSD to: ensure effective follow- up of UNCED; enhance international cooperation and rationalize intergovernmental decision-making capacity; and examine progress in Agenda 21 implementation at the local, national, regional and international levels. The Commission was formally established in 1992 by UN General Assembly Resolution 47/191. The CSD held its first substantive session in June 1993 and has met annually since then.

In June 1997, five years after UNCED, the General Assembly (GA) held a special session (UNGASS) to review implementation of Agenda 21. Negotiations produced a Programme for the Further Implementation of Agenda 21. Among the decisions adopted at UNGASS was the CSD work programme, which identifies sectoral, cross-sectoral and economic sector/major group themes for the subsequent four sessions of the Commission. Overriding issues for each year were to be poverty and consumption and production patterns.

The sixth session of the CSD (CSD-6) met from 20 April to 1 May 1998. Participants considered the economic theme of industry and the sectoral theme of strategic approaches to freshwater management. They also reviewed implementation of the Barbados Programme of Action (POA) for the Sustainable Development of SIDS and discussed the cross-sectoral themes of technology transfer, capacity-building, education, science and awareness- raising. Three Drafting Groups negotiated seven CSD-6 decisions.

Regarding consumption and production patterns, informal consultations resulted in a CSD-6 decision recommending that ECOSOC adopt a draft that, inter alia: recalls ECOSOC resolution 1997/53; invites governments to consult appropriate stakeholder groups and submit views to the Secretariat; invites the CSD Bureau to organize, within existing resources, open-ended consultations among States and to report to the ISWG, having regard for the Secretary-General’s report; and requests the CSD to report to ECOSOC in 1999.

Regarding the review of POA implementation, CSD-6 noted the importance of the two-day Special Session to be held immediately prior to the 54th session of the GA. The Commission urged the international community to actively engage in preparations for the Special Session and encouraged all SIDS to establish national development strategies. The CSD urged the international donor community to engage actively with SIDS to achieve realistic and positive outcomes and concrete assistance, including information on current donor activities. On climate change, the CSD urged the international community to commit adequate financial and technical resources to SIDS to build effective response measures and urged Annex I Parties of the FCCC (developed countries) to become Parties to the Kyoto Protocol as soon as possible. On freshwater, the Commission encouraged SIDS to develop an effective integrated approach to freshwater management and called on the international community to continue to provide support for regional and national efforts to promote sound water resource assessment and monitoring procedures and demand management and policy frameworks, including the transfer of technologies. The CSD expressed concern at current trends in the levels of external resources available to SIDS for human resource development and strongly urged the international community to provide assistance at a level necessary to implement the POA. The Commission also noted that the development of a vulnerability index would assist in identifying the challenges to SIDS.

INTERSESSIONAL WORKING GROUP ON SUSTAINABLE CONSUMPTION AND PRODUCTION PATTERNS AND TOURISM

The ISWG on sustainable consumption and production patterns and tourism met from 22-26 February 1999. Delegates discussed the Secretary-General's report (E/CN.17/1999/2), national activities and proposed CSD actions on sustainable consumption and production patterns on Monday, 22 February. Based on these inputs, Co-Chairs Navid Hanif (Pakistan) and Sandor Mozes (Hungary) drafted a Co-Chairs' summary of discussion, as well as elements for a draft CSD decision. Delegates offered comments on these texts on Wednesday, 24 February, and on revised drafts on Friday, 26 February. They repeated the process for tourism, offering comments on the Secretary-General's report (E/CN.17/1999/5 and Add.1-3), national activities and proposed CSD activities on Tuesday, 23 February, on the Co-Chairs' summary and elements for a draft CSD decision on Thursday, 25 February, and on revised versions on Friday, 26 February.

The following summary reviews the Co-Chairs' summaries of discussion, which the Co-Chairs said would document the state of international debate on the two issues. It then focuses on the proposed elements for a draft CSD decision, which are meant to guide delegates' preparations between the ISWG and CSD-7 and will provide a starting point for negotiations at CSD-7.

SUMMARY OF THE DISCUSSION ON CHANGING CONSUMPTION AND PRODUCTION PATTERNS

Introduction: The Co-Chairs' summary notes that the debate was based on the Secretary-General's review of changing consumption and production patterns (E/CN.17/1999/2), in the context of chapter 4 of Agenda 21 and paragraph 28 of UNGASS. Additional background to the debate included national activities that delegates highlighted in their statements, the 1998 UNDP Human Development Report, and recent relevant meetings.

General Considerations: The summary notes that many delegates said unsustainable consumption and production patterns include adverse environmental impacts arising from the excess of consumption of natural resources, particularly in developed countries, and unemployment, poverty and under-consumption of basic goods and services, particularly in developing countries. They felt it would be useful to have a coordinated programme of national and regional studies concerning destructive patterns of consumption and production and to ensure a sustainable development agenda for energy. Many emphasized that consumption and production patterns, as an overriding issue for the CSD from 1998-2002, should be addressed in the context of the themes for each CSD session. Many said governments should ensure minimum standards of consumption for poor people. Some proposed the use of a variety of policy instruments to promote sustainable consumption and production.

Although increased energy and resource efficiency, reuse and recycling was reported to have allowed increased consumption while reducing pollution, more needs to be done to promote environmentally sound and sustainable consumption and production practices. Some highlighted the importance of developing indicators to measure changes in consumption and production patterns. Others called for further efforts to improve access to international markets for products from least developed countries.

Natural Resource Management and Cleaner Production: This section notes that many delegations called on developed countries to encourage best practices in cleaner production and environmental management and, with international organizations (IOs), to contribute to capacity-building and technology transfer to industry in developing countries. Delegates also addressed the transfer of environmentally sound technologies (ESTs) in combination with financial resources to developing countries and economies in transition. Some supported developing national cleaner production and eco-efficiency strategies, with targets. They also suggested government-industry partnerships to develop policy packages including cleaner production, eco-efficiency, lifecycle management, product stewardship and pollution prevention. Some welcomed the 1998 International Declaration on Cleaner Production launched by UNEP.

The Impact of Globalization on Consumption and Production Patterns: This section notes that consumption and production patterns in developed countries strongly influence patterns in developing countries in the context of globalization and trade liberalization. Consumption and production patterns in developed countries should not be used to create technical barriers to trade. Some suggested that consumption patterns in developed countries provide opportunities for enterprises in developing countries. Many said that trade pressure from developed countries contributed to unsustainable consumption practices in developing countries and recommended that developed countries take steps to harmonize trade and sustainable development policies, with particular reference to avoiding the export of unsustainable consumption and production patterns. Countries could consider applying environmental taxes on particular luxury and disposable goods that have negative environmental impacts. One delegation stressed the need for coherence between multilateral agreements and instruments that address environmental and social standards and trade rules. Many delegations proposed studying the role of communications, media and advertising in promoting and disseminating consumption and production patterns internationally.

Urbanization: This section notes that many delegations said further efforts are urgently needed to address problems related to transportation and health in human settlements in developing countries. Delegates also noted that waste collection and disposal is a major environmental issue in both developing and developed countries. Speakers highlighted the priority of urban infrastructure for clean drinking water and sanitation in developing countries. Many said developed country expertise, technology and financial resources can help address the problems of urban infrastructure development, waste management and comprehensive urban planning in developing countries. Some delegations also noted that urban planning and infrastructure development are key determinants of long-term patterns of consumption and production.

Consumer Information and Education and Social Values: This section notes that some delegations stated that sustainable consumption and production requires that technology improvements be complemented by changes in lifestyles and new perceptions of welfare, in particular among affluent consumers in all countries. To this end, information on sustainable consumption and production should be integrated into educational curricula at all levels, particularly professional education. Some delegations stated that the use of economic policy instruments, including internalization of environmental and social costs, and phasing out environmentally harmful subsidies, were also essential in promoting consumer choices. Many delegations questioned the idea of "social costs" and preferred a reference to the social impacts of economic policy instruments. The need for further research on consumer behavior was noted. Some suggested considering how elements of traditional knowledge, culture, practices and lifestyles can be combined with modern approaches to promote sustainable consumption and production patterns.

POSSIBLE ELEMENTS FOR A DRAFT CSD DECISION ON CONSUMPTION AND PRODUCTION PATTERNS

Introduction: This section identifies agreements and principles upon which the goals of changing consumption and production patterns should be pursued. During discussion of the Co-Chairs' first draft, developing countries proposed that efforts to change consumption and production patterns be in accordance with Agenda 21 and paragraph 28 of UNGASS and in the context of sustained economic growth and sustainable development. They should take into account the situation of developing countries adversely affected by the process and the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities. CANADA proposed incorporating the notion of shared responsibility. NEW ZEALAND and the US suggested combinations of the developing countries' and Canadian proposals, adding Agenda 21, the UNGASS agreement and the goal of eradicating poverty to the background context.

The revised document notes that the principle goals of changing consumption and production patterns should be pursued in full accordance with Agenda 21 and paragraph 28 of UNGASS, taking into account the situation of developing countries affected by the process. It notes that reaffirmed commitments, strengthened cooperation and greater efforts toward concrete action, taking into account the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities, are required. Industrialized countries should continue to take the lead to reverse unsustainable trends. Developing countries' priorities are to eradicate poverty and improve living standards while avoiding environmental damage and social inequity. Countries with economies in transition face the challenge of integrating policies to make consumption and production patterns more sustainable.

Priorities for Future Work: This section indicates that the CSD will continue to address sustainable consumption and production as an overriding issue at CSD-8 and CSD-9, in particular highlighting the linkages with agriculture, trade and finance in 2000, and energy and transport in 2001. During discussion on the first draft, the US suggested that the CSD address consumption and production patterns in the context of each sectoral issue to be considered at future CSD sessions. The revised draft notes that the implementation of the CSD programme of work will incorporate the following four priority areas: effective policy development and implementation; natural resource management and cleaner production; globalization and its impacts on consumption and production patterns; and urbanization and its impacts on consumption and production patterns.

Effective Policy Development and Implementation: This section calls on governments, in cooperation with IOs and in partnership with major groups, to develop policies for promoting sustainable consumption and production patterns using disincentives and incentives. During the discussion on the first draft, the G- 77/CHINA suggested adding references to the transfer of "appropriate" technologies to "developing countries." The UKRAINE suggested including "economies in transition" as beneficiaries of technology transfer and the provision of financial resources. The EU welcomed the idea of developing and implementing economic incentives and indicated that tax differentiation can be useful for goods that have negative effects on the environment. The G-77/CHINA and others suggested deleting paragraphs on the implementation of non-discriminatory environmental taxes on luxury and disposable goods that have negative environmental impacts, and the internalization of environmental and social costs and the phasing out of subsidies with negative social or environmental effects. The US and CANADA stressed the importance of public awareness, participation, education, informed decisions by consumers, involvement of women and youth and improvement of environmental management. SWITZERLAND proposed including references to labels and labeling and ecological tax reform. The PHILIPPINES suggested including references to avoiding potentially negative effects on developing countries' access to markets.

The revised draft indicates that a policy mix could include regulations, economic and social instruments, procurement policies and voluntary agreements and initiatives. It suggests considering a range of economic instruments, including, inter alia, fiscal instruments and the gradual phasing out of environmentally harmful subsidies. It points to the need for increased understanding of the role of advertising and mass media in shaping consumption and production patterns. It also indicates that industrialized countries should promote and facilitate the transfer of skills and ESTs, in combination with financial resources, to developing countries to foster more sustainable consumption and production patterns.

Natural Resource Management and Cleaner Production: This section calls on governments, in cooperation with IOs and major groups, to promote cleaner production, environmental management, demand- side management and eco-efficiency policies and to assess impacts on developing countries.

During discussion of the first draft, the G-77/CHINA sought deletion of references to cleaner production, eco-efficiency, codes of conduct and target setting. The US and AUSTRALIA emphasized key themes including eco-efficiency, lifecycle management, cleaner production and transfer of ESTs. CHILE sought to limit the scope of a reference to the lifecycle of products to that contained in the UN Guidelines on Consumer Protection. The EU underlined the key role of business and industry in facilitating the transfer of best practices and the responsibility of government for eco-labeling schemes. TURKEY called for an evaluation of the impact of policy measures on the competitiveness of developing countries, in particular their small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The Co-Chairs' revised text calls on governments, in cooperation with IOs and in partnership with major groups, to:

  • develop and apply policies to promote public and private investments in cleaner production and the sustainable use of natural resources, including EST transfer to developing countries and economies in transition;

  • collect and disseminate best practices;

  • study the costs and benefits of cleaner production, eco- efficiency and demand-side management and assess their impacts on developing countries;

  • further develop cleaner production and eco-efficiency policy approaches, through environmental management, integrated product policies, target setting, lifecycle management, labeling, and performance reporting;

  • share best practices, in particular with SMEs in developing countries and economies in transition; and

  • engage industry in the debate on sustainable consumption and production.

    The section also calls on UNEP and the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) to continue to support enterprises through their Cleaner Production Centres.

    Globalization and its Impacts on Consumption and Production Patterns: This section indicates that governments, in cooperation with IOs and major groups, should undertake studies of the environmental and social impacts of globalization. During discussion of the first draft, some developed countries proposed that references to trade and sustainable consumption also include reference to the avoidance of artificial trade barriers. They suggested that studies focus on the financial sector and the role of investments on the environment. They also proposed improved coherence between multilateral trade standards and multilateral trade agreements. The US proposed that studies undertaken on impacts of globalization omit references to assessments on the transfer of consumption patterns from industrialized countries to developing countries. He proposed that the draft document refer to "governments" alone and not to "international organizations" so as to increase efforts to make policies on trade and sustainable production and consumption mutually supportive. The RUSSIAN FEDERATION said the proposed studies on the impact of globalization should include impacts on developed countries in addition to developing countries. The EU suggested that the scope of the studies be expanded to include environmental issues. Developing countries proposed that the studies also examine ways and means to promote sustainable consumption and production patterns. CHINA expressed strong reservations on references to universal environmental standards, stating that the issue is best addressed in appropriate trade fora.

    The revised draft document calls on governments, in cooperation with international organizations and major groups, to undertake studies on the environmental and social impacts of globalization. These studies should also examine measures to mitigate negative impacts and to utilize opportunities to promote sustainable consumption and production patterns. Studies on the role of the financial services sector in facilitating environmentally and socially responsible investments should be undertaken. Values and benefits of traditional lifestyles and cultures for promoting sustainable consumption should be studied. Efforts to make policies on sustainable consumption and production mutually supportive must be increased.

    Urbanization and its Impacts on Consumption and Production Patterns: This section identifies actions that governments, in cooperation with international organizations and in partnership with major groups, should take to assess and address the impacts of urbanization. During discussion on the Co-Chairs' first draft, the G-77/CHINA proposed deleting all references to local authorities, stating that they are subsumed in references to governments. The G-77/CHINA also proposed deleting a reference to help from "developed country expertise." The US supported that text and proposed adding reference to help in the form of developed country "experience" rather than "financial resources." He also said the text should refer to the comprehensive review at CSD-10 rather than at "Earth Summit+10." The EU said the Habitat Agenda and UN Commission on Human Settlements (UNCHS) should be referenced. The EU, supported by AUSTRALIA, also proposed expanding the reference to waste collection systems and disposal facilities to "prevention, minimization and recycling of wastes."

    The revised document indicates that governments should take into account the work of the UNCHS and assess and address the environmental and social impacts of urbanization, and increase efforts to address critical issues of freshwater and sanitation in developing countries. It notes that industrialized country experience and resources can help in addressing environmental and social impacts. In-depth studies on key determinants of quality of life should be undertaken. Governments, including local authorities, are invited to incorporate sustainable consumption and production policies in city planning and to report to the comprehensive review at CSD-10. Finally, governments, local authorities, the private sector and other stakeholders are urged to cooperate in developing waste collection systems and disposal facilities and developing programmes for prevention, minimization and recycling of waste.

    SUMMARY OF THE DISCUSSION ON TOURISM

    Introduction: The summary notes that UNGASS requested the CSD to develop an action-oriented international programme of work on sustainable tourism. It also notes that the General Assembly declared the year 2002 as the International Year of Eco-tourism and the International Year of Mountains. The General Assembly requested the CSD to recommend supportive measures and activities that will contribute to a successful year.

    General Considerations: This section notes that the tourism industry is one of the fastest growing sectors in the global economy and has important social and environmental impacts. It is currently and potentially a contributor to sustained economic growth and sustainable development. Continued growth of the industry has important implications for the achievement of sustainable development. In many developing countries it is a major engine of growth because of its contribution to employment and income generation. In some, such as SIDS, it may be the only development alternative in the short or medium term. However, unsustainable tourism can introduce negative social, cultural and environmental changes. The tourism carrying capacity of host destinations, both in environmental and social terms, must be an important consideration. Coastal area development and freshwater were identified as areas of particular concern. Improperly planned tourism development can contribute to problems, such as those arising from the disposal of untreated effluents due to lack of infrastructure, pollution of scarce inland freshwater resources, destruction of coral reefs, and emissions from energy use. Tourism development in mountain regions needs to be properly managed, taking into account local communities and resources. Tourism can help protect and rehabilitate natural assets such as national parks and protected areas and generate improved environmental infrastructure and financial contributions. It can increase the awareness of local populations and motivate communities to protect their natural heritage. Some delegations attempted to define sustainable tourism, with one proposal indicating that sustainable tourism is development that meets the needs of present tourists and host regions while protecting and enhancing opportunity for the future. Another definition suggested sustainable tourism seeks a balance between: economic benefit and investment, social participation, conservation and protection of environmental and biological diversity, environmental regulations and the introduction of environmental consciousness.

    Challenges: This section highlights ten challenges to sustainable tourism identified by delegates. These include: the concentration of services and profits in very few large transnational corporations, the lack of adequate tourism infrastructure, the need to improve SMEs’ access to government incentives and publicity, and the need to involve local communities at all levels in all aspects of the tourism development process. Challenges are also associated with the need to ensure that tourism development planning preserves the legacy, heritage and integrity of tourism destinations, to inform people of the benefits to be gained from tourism, and to raise public awareness and encourage more responsible behavior among tourists. Additional issues mentioned include the need to enhance linkages between the private tourism sector and other sectors of the economy and to ensure that domestic entrepreneurs are not marginalized by foreign investors, to ensure sufficient coordination between the public and private sectors, and to overcome the lack of regional cooperation for promoting the development of sustainable tourism.

    Action by Governments: The summary notes that many delegations stressed that governments should give appropriate attention and priority to tourism in development planning so that it develops in harmony with overall economic, social and environmental goals. To this end, governments should develop national strategies for tourism, in the context of Agenda 21, that will provide focus and direction to all stakeholders. Some countries noted that the use of economic instruments to promote sustainable tourism, in particular the full-costing and pricing of energy and water, can promote eco-efficiency in the tourism industry, as well as provide additional revenue that can be used to support improved management of these resources. It was stressed that governments should promote partnerships between all stakeholders, particularly indigenous and local communities, to promote their involvement in development and management of tourism. Further efforts to prevent and control tourism-related abuse and exploitation of people, particularly women and children and other disadvantaged groups, were emphasized.

    Action by the Private Sector: This section notes that many delegates said the tourism industry should ensure that investment, employment, operational and other business decisions take full account of the wider implications for the long-term development and economic sustainability of the destinations in which they operate. Marketing can be used to enhance the industry's initiatives by raising their clients' awareness of the potential impacts of their holidays. Many delegations urged tourism enterprises to integrate environmental management systems and procedures into all aspects of corporate activity. Delegations also noted that the tourism industry had developed a number of environmental codes of conduct and other voluntary initiatives. Some requested preparation of an inventory of all existing codes of conduct, guidelines and voluntary initiatives, and improvements in the monitoring and reporting of the industry's progress towards the objective of sustainable tourism.

    Action by the International Community: This section notes that many delegations stressed the need for the international community to promote the recognition of the value of tourism as an economic tool for development and the fragility of the resources on which it depends. Many called on international organizations and donor countries to increase their efforts in training and capacity building in the field of tourism in developing countries. Appropriate technical and financial assistance for countries at lower levels of development is described as critical. Some called for effective translation of international, regional and multilateral agreements and guidelines into practical programmes for implementation by the tourism industry. The international community's important role in assisting developing countries, particularly the least developed countries, economies in transition and SIDS, through financial and technical assistance is noted.

    POSSIBLE ELEMENTS FOR A DRAFT CSD DECISION ON TOURISM

    This text is in the format of a UN draft decision, with three preambular paragraphs and six operative paragraphs. The preambular paragraphs establish the context and background against which the possible elements for a draft decision would be taken. They recall the outcome of UNGASS, which requested the CSD to develop an action-oriented international programme of work on sustainable tourism, in cooperation with the World Tourism Organization (WTO), UNCTAD, UNEP, the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and other relevant bodies. Policy development and implementation should take place in cooperation with all interested parties, especially the private sector and local and indigenous communities. This section also recalls that 2002 will be the International Year of Eco-Tourism and the International Year of Mountains, and decides to adopt an international work programme on sustainable tourism development that will be implemented between CSD-7 and the ten-year review of progress since UNCED, in 2002.

    Two operative paragraphs calling for government action identify objectives and partnerships that governments should pursue. During discussion on the first draft, the EU said governments should create an enabling framework to promote sustainable tourism, integrate tourism into sustainable development strategies or plans, involve all stakeholders, and develop and apply an appropriate mix of instruments, including economic instruments. SWITZERLAND proposed references to ILO standards and the role of SMEs and NEW ZEALAND called for work with national tourism councils. The draft decision calls on governments to develop and implement policies and national strategies for sustainable tourism development based on Agenda 21, and to provide focus and direction to all stakeholders, including National Tourism Councils, the private sector and local and indigenous communities. It also encourages governments to promote a favorable framework for SMEs by reducing administrative burdens, increasing access to capital and providing training in management and other skills.

    One operative paragraph calls on the tourism industry to develop new forms of socially, culturally and environmentally compatible forms of tourism and to continue to develop and use voluntary initiatives in support of sustainable tourism.

    Three operative paragraphs identify action by the international community. Governments, major groups, and the UN system, in collaboration with the World Tourism Organization, are invited to undertake a series of tasks outlined in eleven sub- paragraphs, and to report to the CSD. During the discussion on the first draft, the G-77/CHINA called for elements on protecting the cultural integrity of host communities, education and responsible behavior by inbound tourists, including respect for local law and tradition. They preferred consultation on and assessment of a clearinghouse mechanism rather than work on the creation of such a mechanism and called for the deletion of a reference to the development of indicators because no agreed definition of sustainable tourism exists as yet. The EU asked for clarification of the institutional implications of a proposal for a clearinghouse mechanism and also signaled caution on the possibility of further proliferating guidelines, preferring something more practical such as manuals and handbooks. The EU specified a number of tasks for the tourism industry, including the development of voluntary initiatives, education, the use of environmentally sound technologies and management systems, eco-efficiency, work with local economies on benefit sharing, and distancing the industry from sex tourism and tourism-related child exploitation.

    The revised text calls on governments, major groups and the UN system, working through the Inter-Agency Committee for Sustainable Development, in collaboration with the World Tourism Organization, and building on relevant work carried out by UNEP, UNESCO, UNCTAD, ILO, UNDP, the Convention on Biological Diversity and other relevant organizations to undertake a series of tasks and to keep the CSD informed on progress. The eleven task headings address:

  • promotion of sustainable tourism development that increases economic and educational benefits while maintaining the cultural and environmental integrity of the host community;

  • support for the transition to sustainable tourism development in developing countries and economies in transition;

  • dissemination of best practices;

  • exchange of information on transportation, accommodation and other services, public awareness raising and education, and voluntary programmes using trade representatives, tourist offices and the Internet;

  • studies on incentives favoring environmentally sound tourism;

  • further clarification of the concept and definition of sustainable tourism and eco-tourism;

  • the development of indicators for sustainable tourism, taking into account the work of the World Tourism Organization and the testing phase of indicators for sustainable development;

  • activities mutually supportive of preparations for the International Year of Eco-tourism and International Year of the Mountains, as well as activities for the International Coral Reef Initiative;

  • a comprehensive survey and assessment of existing voluntary measures within the context of the process launched at CSD-6;

  • consideration of the establishment of a global network to promote an exchange of information on eco-tourism; and

  • elaboration, in consultation with governments, the private sector, labor associations, local authorities and other major groups, of a comprehensive set of guidelines for sustainable tourism development for approval by the UN by 2002.

    Another paragraph invites the COP of the CBD to contribute to the elaboration of guidelines on sustainable tourism development. The final paragraph invites the World Tourism Organization, the World Travel and Tourism Council and the Earth Council, as the authors of Agenda 21 for the Travel and Tourism Industry, to develop modalities of assessment, monitoring and reporting to complement the work completed thus far and to make results available to the CSD.

    CLOSING PLENARY

    CSD-7 Chair Simon Upton addressed the closing Plenary, expressing pleasure at the constructive and cooperative atmosphere that marked the week’s discussions. He noted that the CSD is trying to revitalize its decisions and make them action- oriented and that the long and fruitless negotiations of the past need to be avoided. With this goal in mind, the Bureau adopted the dual approach of preparing non-negotiated Co-Chairs' summaries and documents identifying elements for a draft decision by the CSD. He said this process was endorsed by all. He called on the CSD to focus its energies on implementation and avoid producing a document replete with generalities and few focused priorities. He hoped that many of the points in the draft elements will result in constructive agreements and highlight issues that require further debate. Upton said the High-Level Segment will attract ministerial attendance only if it goes beyond prepared statements and takes the form of an interactive dialogue. To achieve this objective, he intends to allot half-day sessions to each CSD theme and divide the time equally between country statements and interactive dialogue.

    Co-Chair Hanif then invited comments on the Co-Chairs' text on possible elements for a draft decision on changing consumption and production patterns. The G-77/CHINA indicated that since the ISWG was not a negotiating group, it would not make specific comments on the text, but did not want its silence to be construed incorrectly. The EU suggested noting that sustainable consumption and production patterns needed to be implemented by "all" countries and added a reference to the role of the affluent consumer. On effective policy development and implementation, she said sustainable consumption and production patterns should be integrated into teaching curricula at all levels, and noted that text on the development of indicators should be reinserted. On globalization and its impacts, she welcomed the inclusion of aspects on trade and environment and underlined that these should be fully integrated at forthcoming discussions at the WTO. The US proposed strengthening references to consumer information and education. MEXICO said more emphasis on the impact of developed country consumption and production patterns on developing countries should be made, and expressed concern about specific changes to UNGASS language.

    Delegates then commented on the Co-Chairs' summary of discussion on changing consumption and production patterns. On a paragraph on the collective challenge of promoting a transition to more sustainable patterns of production and consumption, the G- 77/CHINA offered alternative text, noting that many countries had stated that achieving sustainable development requires a transition to sustainable patterns of production and consumption, particularly in industrialized countries, and that governments face a collective challenge to strengthen cooperation and increase efforts to take into account the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities. In paragraphs drawing on G-77/CHINA proposals, she asked that the document record that "many" delegations gave their support. In a paragraph on fossil fuel consumption and SIDS, she proposed additional text, noting that some delegations said that fossil fuel consumption was not the conclusive cause of climate change. On a paragraph stating that "one delegation" noted that economic and social development in oil exporting countries could be adversely affected by measures such as energy taxes, the G- 77/CHINA said "many delegations" had supported this view. Co- Chair Hanif said his draft text on adverse affects was a faithful reflection of what had been said in the Conference Room. He also queried the G-77/CHINA's request to record that delegations had said that fossil fuel consumption was not the conclusive cause of climate change. LIBYA said the views conveyed to the Co-Chair by the G-77/CHINA were the views of the Group, although only one delegation from the Group had made the point about adverse affects on the floor of the Conference Room. IRAN recalled that delegations had been given until 9:00 pm Thursday to submit inputs to the Co-Chairs and such input should be taken on board. VENEZUELA supported the G-77/CHINA-proposed amendment to the paragraph on adverse affects. On a paragraph recording the view that economic instruments might constitute a trade restriction, AUSTRALIA said there was no intention to imply that such instruments should be "avoided." The Co-Chair said the point had been received in writing.

    Delegates were then invited to comment on the possible elements for a draft CSD decision on tourism and sustainable development. The EU reiterated the need to distinguish between actions to be taken by different key players, including governments, the private sector and the UN system. She circulated a list of proposed elements that should be taken into account. This list included actions that governments at all levels should be urged to take, such as creating an enabling framework, involving all stakeholders, making use of economic instruments, and developing and applying an appropriate mix of instruments. The tourism industry should continue the development and use of voluntary initiatives, develop new forms of socially, culturally and environmentally compatible forms of tourism, and undertake efforts to better educate tourists, among others. The G-77/CHINA reiterated her understanding that the format should not set a precedent. The US noted that the call for "financial and technical assistance with regard to all aspects of tourism" did not specify that it be "within existing resources." MEXICO stressed the need for a revised structure and proposed that the text first identify concepts and then outline actions to be taken.

    Co-Chair Hanif said that the drafters of the document believed four items were missing from the discussion thus far: how the work programme will be developed, who will implement it, who will do what, and where the resources will come from. He expressed hope that delegates would come to CSD-7 with answers to these questions.

    Co-Chair Hanif then invited comments on the Co-Chairs' summary of the discussions on tourism and sustainable development. The G-77/CHINA indicated that "many" delegations and not "some" had attempted to define sustainable tourism. The US pointed to the need to clarify that "one delegation" had noted that "eco- tourism is the economic activity that minimizes environmental impacts, valuing and contributing to the conservation of ecosystems and, at the same time, generates incomes for local communities." She said that benefits from tourism to local communities should not only be "transferred" but also "increased." JAPAN noted that an international network on tourism should not only promote an exchange of "views" but an exchange of "information," and indicated the need to refer to "sustainable" tourism throughout the text. Co-Chair Hanif responded that "sustainable tourism" could not be used throughout the text since no definition of the term had been agreed.

    After commenting on the draft outline of the report, delegates adopted the Report of the Working Group (E/CN.17/ISWG.1/1999/L.1) and the Co-Chairs' outline of the report of the ISWG. Co-Chair Hanif thanked delegations for their cooperation and commented that they had just started the process of moving towards decisions and actions. All would have to learn to realize that reiteration of Agenda 21 would not lead to implementation. He said all shared the same planet and there could be no shifting of responsibilities, even with the principle of differentiated but common responsibilities.

    INTERSESSIONAL WORKING GROUP ON OCEANS AND SEAS AND THE SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OF SMALL ISLAND DEVELOPING STATES

    The ISWG on oceans and seas and the sustainable development of SIDS met from 1-5 March 1999. Delegates discussed the Secretary- General's report on oceans and seas (E/CN.17/1999/4) on Monday, 1 March. Based on these inputs, Co-Chairs Alan Simcock (UK) and John Ashe (Antigua and Barbuda) drafted a Co-Chairs' summary of the discussion, as well as elements for a draft CSD decision. Delegates offered comments on these two documents on Wednesday, 3 March, and Thursday, 4 March, and again on revised drafts on Friday, 5 March.

    Delegates discussed the Secretary-General's report on progress in implementing the Barbados Programme of Action (POA) for the sustainable development of SIDS (E/CN.17/1999/6 and Add.1-16) on Tuesday, 2 March. Based on this discussion and a prior decision by the Bureau that the format of the ISWG’s outcome on SIDS should be different from the outcomes on the other issues, the Co-Chairs' produced a text containing draft Co-Chairs’ proposals on the CSD’s contribution to the Special Session on SIDS. Delegates discussed this text in informal consultations on Thursday, 4 March, and commented on a revised version on Friday, 5 March. In addition, on Friday, 5 March, the Secretariat briefed delegates on preparations for CSD-9 on issues related to energy and sought delegates’ preliminary views.

    The following report outlines the Co-Chairs' summary of discussion as well as proposed elements for a draft CSD decision on oceans and seas. It also reviews the draft Co-Chairs’ proposals on CSD’s contribution to the Special Session on SIDS.

    SUMMARY OF THE DISCUSSION ON OCEANS AND SEAS

    INTRODUCTION: The introduction notes that the Secretary- General’s report on oceans and seas (E/CN.17/1999/4) provided the basis for the discussion. It also notes that: many delegations said CSD-7 should build on results achieved thus far, particularly CSD decision 4/15 and UNGASS paragraph 36; starting points for discussion included recognition of countries’ right to manage and sustainably exploit their marine resources and of the need to conserve marine ecosystems; delegations shared information on policies and activities to protect and manage oceans and living marine resources; and useful contributions of recent meetings were highlighted.

    MAJOR CHALLENGES AT NATIONAL, REGIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL LEVELS: This section states that the main priorities identified were: conservation and management of living marine resources; prevention of marine pollution and degradation from land-based activities; scientific understanding of oceans’ interaction with the world climate system; and enhancement of international cooperation and coordination.

    Capacity-building for Action at National and Regional Levels: This section notes that delegations emphasized the need for: national and regional capacity-building and improved scientific assessments of oceans; financial resources and technology transfer; practical steps to enhance regional collaboration; revitalization of UNEP’s Regional Seas Programme; and cooperation among relevant regional organizations on integrated fisheries management and environmental protection, conservation and management based on an ecosystem approach.

    International Agreements: This section notes that delegations urged ratification and full implementation of international agreements on oceans and implementation of the FAO International Plans of Action.

    AREAS OF CONCERN: Living Marine Resources: This section summarizes delegations’ emphasis on the need to: eradicate illegal, unreported, unregulated (IUU) fishing, particularly by vessels that encroach on coastal and island developing States’ fisheries resources; enhance surveillance and control capacity of coastal and island developing States; assist countries to control distant fishing fleets operating under access agreements; take action to reduce and eliminate wasteful fishing practices; adopt bycatch reduction plans at all levels; and assist countries with sound scientific observation of their fish stocks. Many delegates also linked calls to reduce global fishing capacity with evaluation of possible negative impacts of subsidies and reduction and progressive elimination of subsidies and other incentives that may promote overcapitalization. Others observed that where systems for licensing fishing vessels exist, subsidies could not be constituted as a cause of excessive fishing. Some highlighted improved consumer information, including through marketing incentives such as eco-labeling. Others cautioned against eco-labeling’s potential negative impacts on market access.

    Land-based Activities: This section highlights delegates’ general agreement that progress has been made in implementing the Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities (GPA), although attention is needed for effective regional and national implementation. Many identified the lack of financial resources as the major obstacle to achieving the GPA objectives.

    Marine Science and Climate Change: This section notes delegates’ emphasis on the need for: long-term strategies to address the El Niņo phenomenon by improving monitoring and prediction of climatic variability, developing regional early warning systems, and building regional and national capacity; improved scientific understanding of oceans’ role in modifying climatic extremes, through an extended network of monitoring stations; and cooperation to advance oceanographic observation. The damage caused by the recent El Niņo was noted, as were recent conferences within the International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction (IDNDR) framework.

    Other Marine Pollution: This section highlights ongoing negotiations on persistent organic pollutants (POPs) under UNEP, on hazardous substances in anti-fouling paints and the spread of harmful organisms in ballast water within the International Maritime Organization (IMO), and on environmental standards for sea-bed prospecting and eventual mining under the International Sea-Bed Authority. Many expressed support for improving the Group of Experts on Scientific Aspects of Marine Pollution (GESAMP) and highlighted the recent Noordwijk expert meeting’s contributions on environmental practices in offshore and gas activities.

    Coral Reefs and Marine Protected Areas: This section notes delegates’ call for the CSD to reaffirm the importance of the International Coral Reef Initiative’s (ICRI) Call to Action. Some proposed developing a global representative system of marine protected areas (MPAs) within and across national jurisdictions, while others cautioned against applying the concept of MPAs on the high seas in the absence of agreement on their sustainable use.

    INTERNATIONAL COORDINATION AND COOPERATION: This section highlights general agreement on the need to improve coordination within and among governments and the UN system and to review the ACC Subcommittee on Oceans and Coastal Areas (ACC-OCA) to improve its effectiveness in coordination. Some delegations underscored the need for greater synergy and integration of oceans affairs within the UN system, greater transparency and responsiveness in the annual debates on oceans, and NGO involvement. Many stressed the need for improved coordination at the intergovernmental level. Some presented specific proposals for developing new organizational arrangements. Others cautioned against establishing a new institution and preferred streamlining and reinforcing existing mechanisms. Some noted the need for further examination of the purpose, format, timing, duration, frequency and reallocation of available funds when considering new organizational arrangements, and others supported identifying problems in existing international arrangements and attempting first to make better use of the existing framework of relevant conventions and organizations.

    POSSIBLE ELEMENTS FOR A DRAFT CSD DECISION ON OCEANS AND SEAS

    GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS: This section describes the importance of oceans and seas in providing the planet’s life-support and vital resources. In discussion on the first Co-Chairs’ draft, the EU proposed that action be based on the precautionary and polluter pays principles and an ecosystem approach. The final version of the decision notes that oceans and seas drive the climate and the hydrological cycle and provide vital resources to be used to eradicate poverty and ensure food security, economic prosperity and well-being for present and future generations. It is also noted that action should be taken on the basis of the precautionary, polluter-pays and ecosystem approaches and the best available scientific knowledge.

    MAJOR CHALLENGES AT THE NATIONAL, REGIONAL AND GLOBAL LEVELS: This section draws attention to the importance of international cooperation to ensure conservation of biodiversity through integrated management. In discussion on the first Co-Chairs’ draft, the G-77/CHINA, supported by ICELAND, requested adding “while respecting the sovereign rights of coastal States.” The RIO GROUP and REPUBLIC OF KOREA broadened conservation and management of “fisheries” to “living marine resources.” The EU proposed broadening a reference to pollution prevention from land-based activities to include shipping and offshore activities. The final version notes that the CSD should give priority to: conservation, management and sustainable use of living marine resources; prevention of marine pollution and degradation from land-based and other activities; scientific understanding of how oceans and seas interact with the world climate system; and enhancement of international cooperation in support of national and regional action in developing countries and countries with economies in transition.

    National-level Capacity-building: In discussions on this section, the EU proposed adding the need to assist coastal and island States to sustainably manage their marine resources. NORWAY recommended noting the need to enhance coordination and cooperation in developed countries. The final version notes that the CSD could invite the UN system and governments to review programmes and ensure that priority is given to building capacities related to, inter alia, marine and environmental science, administration of fisheries and shipping, control of polluting activities and cooperation and coordination with other States on marine environmental matters, and response to climatic variability, such as El Niņo.

    Regional-level Capacity-building: In initial discussions on this section, the G-77/CHINA stressed that cooperation among regional seas programmes should be “in the framework of compliance with existing legal regimes.” NORWAY preferred not limiting references to regional monitoring systems to those “for climatic variability.” The final version states that the CSD could: emphasize the importance of appropriate cooperation for the protection and sustainable use of regional seas; support the need to strengthen the UNEP Regional Seas Programme; enhance cooperation with other regional seas organizations; and invite the UN system and governments to review priority capacity- building activities.

    International Agreements: This section identifies actions to enable implementation of global and regional agreements. In initial discussions, the RIO GROUP called for analysis of obstacles to implementation, the EU suggested reviewing the lack of progress in ratification of international agreements and the US advocated a specific call for ratification and entry into force of the UN Fish Stocks Agreement before the end of 1999. The final version states that the CSD could invite relevant intergovernmental bodies to review the status of implementation of international agreements and obstacles to implementation and propose possible actions to promote wider acceptance and implementation.

    AREAS OF PARTICULAR CONCERN: This section addresses the sustainable management of fisheries and other living marine resources, land-based activities, marine science and marine pollution.

    Living Marine Resources: In initial discussion, the G-77/CHINA proposed adding reference to over-fishing by highly industrialized fleets. The EU proposed calling for “sustainable” rather than “rational” use and management of living marine resources and strengthening the CSD’s work on IUU. CANADA and NEW ZEALAND emphasized the need for by-catch reductions. CANADA stressed the need to develop programmes to prevent over-fishing. The final draft states that the CSD could, inter alia: urge adoption of the recent FAO Committee on Fisheries’ International Plans of Action for the Management of Fishing Capacity, Conservation and Management of Sharks and Reducing the Incidental Catch of Seabirds in Longline Fisheries; urge the FAO to prioritize work on combating IUU; note the potential contributions of schemes to improve consumer information; endorse the ICRI Call to Action; and invite governments and regional seas organizations to consider the contributions of a global representative system of MPAs to sustainable management of oceans and seas.

    Land-based Activities: In discussions on the Co-Chairs’ draft, the G-77/CHINA, the RIO GROUP and NORWAY supported text emphasizing the importance of regional initiatives and UNEP’s Regional Seas Programme. The US proposed urging UNEP to establish the GPA coordinating office and, with NORWAY and NEW ZEALAND, said the decision should emphasize GPA implementation. The final version, inter alia, suggests that the CSD express concern at the slow rate of GPA implementation, welcome the establishment of the Hague Coordination Office for the GPA, and appeal to UN agencies to review their role and contribution to GPA implementation. It also suggests that the CSD could: welcome progress on POPs; welcome the UNEP Governing Council agreement to explore the feasibility for UNEP to convene a conference to address sewage as a major land-based source of pollution; and stress the importance of supporting regional-level initiatives.

    Marine Science: In consideration of the initial Co-Chairs’ draft, CANADA proposed inviting governments and relevant IOs to address the impact of physical and chemical changes on health, distribution and productivity of living marine resources, and encouraging governments to address the need for oceanic data to underpin decision-making. The RIO GROUP proposed text outlining CSD steps to address El Niņo. The final version states that the CSD could: emphasize the importance of scientific understanding for sound decision-making by stressing the value of collecting reliable oceanographic data; note the impacts of El Niņo; request information on all aspects of El Niņo; register the importance of addressing El Niņo at the next comprehensive review of Agenda 21; and invite regional fisheries organizations (RFOs) to consider strengthening catch surveillance.

    Other Marine Pollution: In discussions on the initial Co- Chairs’ draft, the EU said the export of wastes for the purpose of dumping at sea should be “avoided” rather than “better controlled.” The RIO GROUP said environmental aspects of oil and gas operations should be addressed at national and sub-regional as well as regional levels, particularly in the framework of the UNEP Regional Seas Programme. The final draft says the CSD could recommend that, inter alia: flag States ratify and implement international instruments; export of waste for sea dumping cease; the international community prevent the spread of harmful aquatic organisms through ballast water; and action on environmental aspects of offshore oil and gas operations continue at the national, sub-regional and regional levels.

    INTERNATIONAL COORDINATION AND COOPERATION: This section states that the CSD could urge relevant national, regional or global institutions to enhance collaboration and coordination on oceans. During discussion of the initial draft, NEW ZEALAND and others proposed detailing options for improved coordination, including, inter alia, a UN conference on ocean affairs, a high- level symposium and an annual open-ended working group of the GA. CANADA and NORWAY noted the need to improve coordination through existing institutions and resources. The MARSHALL ISLANDS called for a forum with open-ended, in-depth reviews of ocean affairs with SIDS participation. The revised version states that the CSD could: urge relevant institutions to enhance collaboration to promote coordination, avoid duplication, enhance the effectiveness of existing organizations and ensure better access to information and broadened dissemination; recommend a more integrated approach to all legal, economic, social and environmental aspects of oceans and seas; invite the Secretary-General to undertake measures to ensure more effective collaboration between relevant parts of the UN Secretariat; and cooperate with executive heads of relevant UN organizations to improve the effectiveness of the ACC-OCA. It also recommends that the GA consider ways to ensure that its annual debate on oceans and the Law of the Sea is broadened and better prepared through increased participation of relevant UN and other IOs. On new organizational arrangements, it also notes that a number of proposals made at the ISWG are attached to the Co-Chairs' summary and that other options may emerge.

    PROPOSALS ON THE CSD’S CONTRIBUTION TO THE SPECIAL SESSION ON SIDS

    Given the upcoming Special Session to review implementation of the POA, the ISWG and CSD-7 were mandated to act as preparatory bodies and produce a draft document for consideration and adoption by the GA. The format of the ISWG outcome on SIDS was therefore to be different from the outcomes of other agenda items. Delegates first offered comments on the Secretary- General’s report on SIDS, and based on this discussion, the Co- Chairs produced a text with draft proposals on the CSD’s contribution to the Special Session. Delegates then conducted informal consultations, chaired by John Ashe, on this text. It was agreed that the Co-Chairs would produce a revised draft and hold further informal consultations prior to CSD-7 on the basis of the ISWG’s work. Another revision of the text will be produced based on these consultations and used as a basis for CSD-7 negotiations.

    GENERAL DISCUSSION ON THE SECRETARY-GENERAL’S REPORT ON SIDS: The G-77/CHINA noted that although considerable progress toward implementing the POA has been made at national and regional levels, significant constraints remain. She suggested that the POA review should focus on identifying existing constraints and means to overcome them. The EU underscored the importance of national and regional sustainable development strategies for effective use of human, institutional, financial and natural resources. AOSIS emphasized the importance of identifying constraints and opportunities for international support to SIDS and agreeing on an action-oriented outcome. He stated that while partnerships between SIDS and the international community have been constructive, they have not adequately addressed climate change and sea-level rise, biodiversity, waste management and natural resources. He emphasized the long-term nature of the POA goals and called for consistency in implementation to maintain momentum and for benchmarks to review progress.

    AUSTRALIA noted a lack of baseline data for SIDS on most environmental indicators, making progress difficult to gauge. CANADA called for private sector and NGO involvement in capacity-building programmes. NEW ZEALAND noted that, in addition to economic and environmental vulnerability, the culture and traditions of SIDS are under threat. The US emphasized the need to implement transparent and inclusive participatory approaches and improve the effectiveness of assistance. He noted consensus on the need for capacity-building in SIDS to formulate effective policies, enforce decisions and facilitate their participation at international negotiating fora.

    GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS: This section notes that considerable efforts have been made by SIDS at national and regional levels to meet POA priorities and objectives. It indicates that SIDS are a special case for sustainable development due to their ecological fragility, vulnerability, and the particular constraints they face. During informal consultations, the need for enhanced domestic efforts by SIDS to meet the POA’s priorities and objectives was noted. One delegation indicated that international support to SIDS should be “supplemental” to domestic efforts. The revised text notes considerable efforts by SIDS to meet POA priorities and objectives. It also indicates that effective financial support from the international community is an important supplement to SIDS’ efforts and should be targeted to capacity-building, improved coordination, technical assistance, appropriate institutional strengthening, and transfer and use of ESTs.

    MAJOR CROSS-CUTTING ISSUES: Each sub-section under major cross- cutting issues and sectoral issues contains introductory paragraphs and a chapeau noting that the CSD recommends objectives and activities, including specific mechanisms for implementation, to the Special Session. In informal consultations, it was proposed that the chapeaus instead “call upon SIDS and the international community to prioritize these goals and related activities.”

    Sustainable Development Strategies: This sub-section refers to sustainable development strategies to allow for a more effective use of national, regional, human, institutional, financial and natural resources. The initial draft did not include this section. The revised draft proposes CSD-7 recommendations to the Special Session on SIDS, regarding, inter alia: renewed commitment by SIDS to the completion of national sustainable development strategies and, as appropriate, sub-regional and regional strategies, before 2002 to implement the POA; exchange of experiences among different island regions in implementing national sustainable development strategies; formulation of sustainable development strategies to address institutional capacity and set clear indicators and benchmarks of progress; strengthening of national and regional statistical services; and ensuring consistency with the goals of the “international development strategy.”

    Capacity-building: This sub-section reiterates that capacity- building remains critical to the long-term sustainable development of SIDS and that concerns remain over levels of external assistance. In informal discussions, delegates preferred deletion of “context-sensitive gender balance” in education programme delivery. The revised draft makes recommendations on, inter alia: developing and implementing strategies for sustainable development; operationalizing sustainable development management concepts; better utilizing traditional and indigenous skills-training and awareness-raising approaches; developing partnerships to increase private sector skills; and strengthening appropriate regional training and scientific research centers.

    Finance: This sub-section refers to the provision of financial resources and notes that financial requirements and technical support remain critical for implementation of the POA. During informal consultations, a delegation opposed references to new and additional financial commitments and said the entire section should be bracketed. Another noted that resources “need to be further” mobilized. Inclusion of the recent Donor-SIDS conference outcomes was requested. The revised draft states that financial resources from all sources will be essential to reflect the increased significance attached to SIDS’ sustainable development and proposes CSD-7 recommendations to the Special Session on, inter alia: building on the recent Donor-SIDS conference for new and additional financial commitments and disbursements and better use of ODA; and further commitment from international financial institutions to SIDS sustainable projects and programmes.

    Globalization and Trade Liberalization: This sub-section notes that SIDS face new challenges and opportunities from globalization and have limited capacity to adapt to the internationalization of business. During the consultations, it was proposed to shift the emphasis from SIDS’ limited capacity to face threats and adapt to changes in trade rules and globalization to emphasize enabling SIDS to take advantage of opportunities from globalization. It was also suggested to include a reference to “additional” threats posed by globalization. In the revised draft, proposed recommendations by CSD-7 to the Special Session include to: assist SIDS with the challenges related to globalization and integrating their economies into the world economy; further examine the impact of globalization and trade liberalization on SIDS’ economies; strengthen SIDS’ productive capacity; reduce trade barriers; and provide SIDS with more secure access to export markets.

    Technology Transfer: This sub-section states that although the general technology situation and requirements of SIDS reflect those of developing countries at large, SIDS have special characteristics and concerns. Thus, technologies should be modified to take into account SIDS’ special needs, in particular, to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to the effects of climate change. During informal discussions, one delegate proposed changing the section title to “Science and Technology” to better reflect the POA. Another said the title should remain unchanged, given that a section on “technology transfer” was included in the POA under cross-sectoral issues. In the revised draft, recommendations to the Special Session include: ensuring the availability of information to SIDS; connecting existing information centers; developing regional and sub-regional centers of excellence; and providing multilateral and bilateral support to SIDS on technologies and technology information.

    Vulnerability Index: This sub-section notes the need for a vulnerability index of economic, ecological and environmental parameters. It was proposed to recommend consideration of how a vulnerability index might be used, in addition to other statistical measures, as quantitative indicators of fragility. In the revised draft, recommendations to the Special Session include: emphasizing the need for relevant bodies of the UN system and others to finalize the quantitative and analytic work on the vulnerability index for SIDS; ensuring capacity at all levels for long-term monitoring and evaluation; and welcoming the inclusion of SIDS in the Global Environment Outlook process.

    Information Management: SIDSNET: This sub-section notes SIDSNET’s potential for effective and successful POA implementation and recommends that SIDS enhance their “ownership” of the programme. A request was made on a possible clearinghouse for information exchange. The revised draft recommends that the Special Session: address constraints to Internet connectivity; encourage private sector opportunities and involvement; and provide necessary support and training.

    SECTORAL ISSUES: Climate Change, Climate Variability and Natural Disasters: This sub-section underscores that climate change is of particular concern to SIDS and calls on the international community to support adaptation options for SIDS and reduce vulnerability and improve access to the best available information. Many proposed that this section be divided into two, with the new section on natural disasters. The revised draft recommends that the Special Session: address freshwater concerns and natural disaster reduction; improve scientific understanding of severe weather events; and improve work on climate prediction and natural disaster prevention.

    Energy: This sub-section stresses the dependency of SIDS on conventional energy resources and notes the need for mobilization of resources from all sources for provision of technical, financial and technological assistance to SIDS to develop and utilize environmentally sound renewable energy sources. During the informal discussions, a proposal was made to delete a call for international support to provide renewable energy sources and to indicate national government responsibility for creating an enabling environment for private sector investment. In the revised draft, recommendations to the Special Session include: establishment of priorities in renewable energy initiatives at the regional level; development of human resources for planning and management of the renewable energy sector; development of mechanisms to encourage research and development; and development of innovative national schemes for public awareness.

    Freshwater Resources: This sub-section highlights the critical importance of freshwater availability and indicates that the geophysical characteristics of many small islands make them especially vulnerable to surface and groundwater scarcity. During the informal discussions, planning and integrated management of freshwater resources were emphasized. The revised draft makes recommendations to the Special Session on: improvement of evaluation, planning and integrated management of freshwater resources in SIDS; implementation of CSD-6 decisions on freshwater; and coordination and refocusing of aid programmes and project design to assist SIDS to develop integrated water management capacity.

    Coastal and Marine Resources: This sub-section notes that oceans represent the most important economic sector in SIDS, and calls for improved ocean management, conservation of the oceans and seas, and sustainable use of marine resources. It indicates that action is needed to sustain healthy reefs and requests building on the ICRI and the CBD Jakarta Mandate. During informal consultations, one delegate opposed text on negotiating fishing agreements to obtain increased access fees and greater supervision of distant water-fleets. Another preferred that coastal zone management take place in areas of “sovereignty or jurisdiction of SIDS” rather than in exclusive economic zones. The revised draft makes recommendations to the Special Session on: community-based reef conservation and management; alternative livelihoods such as aquaculture and eco-tourism; post-harvest technology; integrated reef management initiatives; research, monitoring and transfer of technology to assess the impact of exploration of non-living resources; and further implementation of coral reef action plans.

    Tourism: This sub-section emphasizes the need for SIDS to undertake national and regional efforts to develop and promote environmentally sound and nature-based tourism. During informal consultations, it was proposed that the importance of regional marketing, private sector participation and creation of an enabling environment be underscored. It recommends national- level actions to: establish regional and national environmental assessment of carrying capacity and social and cultural implications of tourism development; strengthen institutional capacity-building in tourism; encourage use of modern technologies and communications systems; develop regulatory frameworks supporting sustainable tourism; establish partnerships for sustainable tourism; and develop human resources, small management enterprises and capacity to utilize modern technologies. International-level actions are recommended, including: adoption of appropriate regulations; support for accreditation of sustainable tourism practices; provision of educational materials to international source markets on environmental and development issues and their significance for SIDS; and provision of adequate resources to support implementation of SIDS’ national and regional priorities.

    THE ROLE OF THE UN SYSTEM: This section stresses the need for the UN system to: continue measuring progress via UN Secretary- General reports and CSD work; seek SIDS’ views on sustainable development issues to ensure that they consider national differences and local sensitivities; have increased international support for regional monitoring and assessment, and develop benchmarks and improve performance indicators; and make more effective use of existing resources, mobilize new resources and improve coordination mechanisms aimed at focused and harmonized support for SIDS priorities. During informal consultations, one delegate preferred stressing the need to make more effective use of “existing” resources “from all sources” rather than the need to mobilize new resources. The following activities are recommended: strengthening of existing institutional arrangements through more efficient use of UN resources to maximize support for SIDS; developing mechanisms to facilitate partnership development; ensuring coordination with existing regional initiatives when UN agencies and member States design programmes; and promoting UN agency support for SIDS to achieve accession to and implementation of relevant international conventions.

    INITIATION OF PREPARATION FOR CSD-9 ON ISSUES RELATED TO ENERGY

    On Friday, 9 March, the Secretariat briefed the ISWG on preparations for CSD-9 on issues related to energy and sought delegates’ preliminary views to assist it in formulating specific proposals for consideration during CSD-7.

    JoAnne DiSano, Director of the UN Division for Sustainable Development, highlighted the UNGASS decision that CSD-9’s sectoral theme will be on atmosphere/energy, CSD-7 will begin preparations for CSD-9, and an Open-ended Intergovernmental Group of Experts on Energy and Sustainable Development (“energy group”) will be held in conjunction with the ISWGs in 2000 and 2001. She proposed two preparatory process components: two meetings of the “energy group” to be held in 2000 and 2001 in conjunction with the ISWGs; and contributions from the new ECOSOC Committee on Energy and Natural Resources for Development (CENRD). She clarified that since energy is not on CSD-8’s agenda, the first meeting of the “energy group” would need to be held in addition to the two regular ISWG meetings. She suggested that the second meeting of the “energy group” replace one of the two meetings of the CSD-9 ISWG. She also mentioned the creation of an Ad Hoc Inter-Agency Working Group on Energy to collaborate with the CSD.

    Supported by EGYPT and ALGERIA, the G-77/CHINA said intersessional meetings play a vital role in the preparations for CSD sessions and could not agree with the suggestion that the second “energy group” meeting replace one of the two ISWG meetings. The EU endorsed the proposal for the first “energy group” meeting to take place in 2000 in addition to the ISWG meetings, and for its second meeting to replace one of the ISWG meetings. The US noted that UNGASS decisions did not convey the message to create an “energy group” for CSD-9 deliberations and indicated its preference for using existing bodies, such as the ISWG. The Secretariat said that informal consultations would continue.

    CLOSING PLENARY

    Co-Chair Simcock convened the closing Plenary of the ISWG on Friday afternoon. Co-Chair Ashe updated delegations on informal consultations on the Co-Chairs' draft text on SIDS, reporting agreement that further submissions could be made up to 20 March, after which the Co-Chairs would prepare a third draft. There would be a further round of informal discussions in New York during the week of 29 March. The objective was to arrive at CSD- 7 with text largely in place in order to minimize the workload during the three days available for negotiations on SIDS.

    Co-Chair Simcock invited comments on elements for a draft CSD decision on oceans and seas. The G-77/CHINA said it was “not dissatisfied” with the text. The EU noted areas of concern to be addressed prior to CSD-7 and emphasized inclusion of elements on, inter alia: contributions from major groups from all regions; integration of environmental and social issues into fisheries management; and development of integrated national action plans on oceans and coastal zone management. CANADA said if the CSD is to effect real change, tentative language like “could” must be replaced with stronger language like “should.” The RUSSIAN FEDERATION described the draft as good material for facilitating CSD-7 preparations. On capacity-building, NORWAY noted the need to enhance cooperation at the national level among both developing and developed countries. Regarding prevention of pollution from land-based “activities,” the RIO GROUP preferred land-based “sources.” The RUSSIAN FEDERATION questioned the element on the contribution of improved availability of consumer information. Regarding a possible request to RFOs to provide information on progress made and problems faced, the US said RFOs are already providing this information to the FAO and cautioned against calling for actions already underway. TURKEY called for inclusion of maritime traffic pollution management. The G-77/CHINA, the EU and JAPAN noted their submission of written amendments.

    On international coordination and cooperation, the G-77/CHINA, supported by the US and SUDAN, expressed difficulty with a sub- paragraph recommending that the GA consider ways and means of ensuring that its annual debate on oceans and the Law of the Sea is broadened, with open participation by all member States and involvement of relevant parts of the UN system and other IOs involved with Agenda 21, UNCLOS and other related international agreements. She proposed a shortened text on enhancing the effectiveness of the annual GA debate and recommended deleting the details on participation. The EU and NORWAY preferred the text in the Co-Chairs' draft. EGYPT underscored the G-77/CHINA's view and questioned the possibility of quantifying a “broadening” of the debate. Co-Chair Simcock agreed to modify his text and proposed replacing the final paragraph in the section on further options for discussion on oceans. He offered text stating that a number of proposals were made and would be annexed and, with the agreement of delegations, adding that other options may emerge.

    Co-Chair Simcock then invited comments on the Co-Chairs’ summary of discussion on oceans and seas. Based on the preceding discussion on the elements for a CSD decision on oceans and seas, he said the paragraph listing some delegates’ specific proposals for developing new organizational arrangements would be amended to state that some delegations presented these in written form and that these proposals (by Malta, Canada, the Rio Group and the US) would be attached rather than listed in the Co-Chairs’ summary of discussion. INDIA and the SOUTH PACIFIC GROUP noted that they had submitted proposals that they wished to be annexed. CHINA sought clarification on the format of these attachments. Co-Chair Simcock replied they would be annexed in the format in which they were submitted. To the final paragraph on the need for further discussions on, inter alia, reallocation of available funds when considering new organizational arrangements, the G-77/CHINA added “consistent with the financial rules and regulations of the UN.” JAPAN and NORWAY requested an additional reference to the FAO’s work on eco- labeling of fish products in the section on living marine resources.

    Co-Chair Simcock then orally presented the Report of the Working Group on Oceans and Seas and the Sustainable Development of SIDS, noting that the Co-Chairs had insufficient time to prepare a written version. He explained that the Report would consist of the Co-Chairs’ summary of discussion and elements for a draft CSD decision on oceans and seas and a revised version of the Co- Chairs’ proposals on CSD’s contribution to the Special Session on SIDS, preceded by an introduction. The introduction to the Report as read out by Co-Chair Simcock notes that: the role of the ISWG was to serve as a preparatory meeting for CSD-7 and facilitate the CSD in achieving tangible, action-oriented results on oceans and seas and SIDS. It notes that the meeting produced a Co-Chairs’ summary of discussion on oceans and seas, which will not be further modified and will be included in the report to the CSD as reference material. It further states that the possible elements for a draft CSD decision on oceans and seas could serve as a starting point for further deliberations at CSD-7 and is expected to be further studied by delegations to help formulate their positions in preparation for negotiations at CSD-7. On SIDS, the Report notes that it was agreed that the Co-Chairs would continue to conduct informal discussions based on the ISWG’s work and would issue a revised text of proposals for CSD’s contribution to the Special Session on the basis of original proposals, modified by comments and proposals submitted by delegations during the ISWG and in intersessional consultations thereafter.

    Delegates adopted the Report of the Working Group as presented. Co-Chair Simcock thanked Co-Chair John Ashe, congratulated delegates for their work on the texts and officially drew the meeting to a close at 6:30 pm.

    A BRIEF ANALYSIS OF THE ISWGs

    SIMON'S PROGRESS - TURNING THE TIDE AT THE CSD?

    With the support of the Bureau, CSD-7 Chair Simon Upton will arrive in New York in April with determination to bring innovation and energy to the work of the Commission. He will combine wisdom gleaned from some bitter lessons of CSD sessions past with the advantage of having conducted a series of meetings with ministers who share his desire for an action-oriented session. This analysis will explore some of the reasons why observers at the ISWGs believe the fortunes of the Commission and its work may be turning in the right direction.

    EXTERNAL CONSTRAINTS AND OPPORTUNITIES: Any assessment of the CSD’s performance must begin with an acknowledgement that there are absolute limits to its capacity both to set and sustain an agenda. Its work does not take place in a vacuum but is framed by a number of factors that lie beyond its immediate influence. For example, during informal and frank exchanges in the wings, representatives of the G-77 were forthright in expressing a sense of betrayal since UNCED, where agreement was reached on the supposed “global compact” between the developing and developed world. The deal was to deliver finance and technology transfers from the developed world in return for environmentally sustainable development from developing countries. Some European representatives quietly concede that the political will to honor the compact quickly dissipated. At the ISWG they urged NGOs to turn up the volume of public opinion once again and help restore the political support necessary to implement the developed world's end of the bargain. The stalling of the “global compact” at the heart of the UNCED agreements produced a fault line, which has forced many a proposal to stumble at the CSD. This reality is something that the CSD alone can do little to correct.

    Just as factors beyond the control of the CSD can hinder progress, so too can new political developments in the world beyond the CSD offer the prospect of a change in the fortunes of Agenda 21. Some such developments can now be identified. An important one is the political swing to left and center-left governments highly responsive to quality of life issues in Europe, including the presence of Green Party ministers in a number of European government cabinets. These transitions help to explain European signals of a new political will to put money on the table to help meet developed countries' post-UNCED obligations together with renewed domestic commitment to integrate the three components of sustainable development.

    Alongside the political swings in parts of the developed world is the influence of associated international environmental agreements. A notable example is the Kyoto Protocol, with its legally-binding implications for industrialized countries. The Kyoto Protocol has placed a powerhouse behind developing countries' demands for fair play and fair shares in the earth's bounty. The CSD and Agenda 21 are notable for their lack of legally-binding authority and resort to exhortation. With developments such as the Kyoto Protocol, however, the sustainable development agenda via the complex and all-embracing theme of energy economics now benefits de facto from the authority bestowed by legally-binding norms driven by a decisive indicator of unsustainable development: climate change.

    INTERNAL CAPACITY: Recognition of the externally driven limits to and opportunities for setting and driving Agenda 21 forward can enhance the prospects for attempts to innovate within the negotiating process. With the support of the CSD Bureau, Upton sought feedback from ministers around the world to support the introduction of a new working approach, with a view to revitalizing the CSD's outcomes and making them more relevant. To avoid "long and fruitless negotiations," according to Upton, delegations were invited to produce two types of documents at the ISWGs: a summary of their discussions, including minority positions, and draft elements for CSD decisions, which will form the basis for discussion at CSD-7. His objective is to achieve a clear output and spur both government action and renewed engagement of the public. Ministers have told Upton that “high- sounding” outputs that defy practical implementation, rigorous monitoring or evaluation are to be avoided in future. The hope is that the CSD will pursue realistic goals and specify priority actions. So rather than struggling to find a consensus at the ISWGs, delegations were invited to identify elements for decision-making with early guidance from ministers at the halfway point during CSD-7.

    Ministers have told Upton that the price of failure to generate meaningful outputs will be a further decline in the High-Level Segment's ability to attract participation. It has been reported that the lessons of UNGASS have been studied closely by the CSD Secretariat, which has concluded that in the minds of ministers, the public and the press, the CSD has to recover lost ground and improve its ability to produce meaningful and substantive outputs.

    Upton has signaled that he has grasped some of the lessons of the past and is prepared to lead from the front when he takes the Chair at CSD-7, a role that has already stirred some nervousness within the G-77. His proposed methods are, however, not without potential pitfalls. There is no guarantee that the Co-Chairs' summaries of discussion will succeed in pre-empting the performance of much-cherished "theological" recitals of positions on issues such as ODA and common but differentiated responsibilities at CSD-7. The prospect of negotiators focusing instead on the pithy draft elements for discussion prepared by the ISWG Co-Chairs is optimistic, to say the least. Questions have also been raised about the possible fallout in the event of an attempt by Upton to introduce his own summary texts based on early ministerial contributions at the High-Level Segment. This, despite all the lessons so painfully learned at UNGASS in 1997, could produce a similar scenario: a Chair who finds himself unable to convince negotiators on the floor that they should take “ownership” of his draft text.

    SOME KEY INDICATORS OF SIMON'S PROGRESS: Several key debates will test Chair Upton's strategy to break with CSD tradition and accelerate a focused negotiation, empowered by early high-level decision-making. The ministerial interaction and statements will focus heavily on the issue of international coordination of oceans and seas issues. While delegations tabled at least half a dozen possible recommendations for the CSD to embrace improved institutional coordination, they boil down to two categories: a conference on oceans and seas or a formula for a working group under the auspices of the GA. NGOs are particularly nervous about the latter option due to the implications that a process under the GA might have for their participation. The oceans and seas issues are complex, with matters of the relationship between UNCLOS and other bodies to be resolved and the question of enforcement on the high seas looming.

    While some level of agreement emerged at the ISWG on tourism and sustainable development, NGOs and others, including Upton, are reported to be less than impressed by the ISWG’s work. Some found its first attempt at a definition of sustainable tourism both vacuous and telling: "development which meets the need of present tourists and host regions while protecting and enhancing opportunity for the future." On sustainable consumption and production, the G-77/China reserved its position and released its proposals on the final afternoon of the ISWG. Preliminary G- 77/China recommendations to delete all references to eco- efficiency, cleaner production, target-setting and codes of conduct were a source of early disappointment for European negotiators.

    On SIDS and the upcoming review of the POA, the CSD will have an opportunity to revisit the task of preparing an effective and operational draft for the Special Session. During the ISWG, a positive spin was put on the recent meeting of prospective donors with representatives of SIDS who are prepared to wait until September to measure the adequacy of international political will against the urgency of their agenda, as they face the challenges of global warming and the chill winds of international trade liberalization, together with regional financial shocks.

    The “global compact” will be put to the test once again at the Special Session on SIDS in September. While developing countries have noted progress in implementing the POA at national and regional levels, they also point to significant constraints and the need for more international support to overcome them. AOSIS’ recollection of the devastating impact of the 1997-98 El Niņo phenomenon on SIDS called attention to SIDS’ vulnerability and their need for international support, which SIDS hope will underline the need for renewed commitment to implementing the POA. On the other hand, developed countries at the ISWG attempted to shift the emphasis to greater national and regional efforts and away from international support. This generated waves of anxiety for those hoping that the Special Session will result in renewed commitment to assisting SIDS.

    CONCLUSION: Upton is well-known for his attachment to the aesthetics of theoretical rigor in making policy. His ministerial experience in New Zealand, however, demonstrates that even the best-laid plans can sometimes flounder on the rocks of implementation. Only time will tell whether his tęte-ā- tęte encounters with fellow ministers around the world have equipped him with an accurate assessment of what is diplomatically possible at the CSD.

    THINGS TO LOOK FOR

    SEVENTH SESSION OF THE COMMISSION ON SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: CSD-7 will be held from 19-30 April 1999 in New York. For information, contact: Andrey Vasilyev, Division for Sustainable Development; tel: +1-212-963-5949; fax: +1-212-963-4260; e-mail: vasilyev@un.org; Internet: http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/. For major group information, contact Zehra Aydin-Sidos, Division for Sustainable Development; tel: +1-212-963-8811; fax: +1-212-963- 1267; e-mail: aydin@un.org.

    MULTI-STAKEHOLDER CONSULTATIVE MEETING TO IDENTIFY KEY ELEMENTS OF A REVIEW OF VOLUNTARY INITIATIVES: This meeting will convene in Toronto, Canada, from 10-12 March 1999 in follow-up to the CSD-6 decision on industry and sustainable development. For information, contact: Zehra Aydin-Sipos (see above).

    MINISTERIAL MEETING ON THE CODE OF CONDUCT FOR RESPONSIBLE FISHERIES: The Ministerial Meeting on the Implementation of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries will take place in Rome, Italy, from 10-11 March 1999. For information contact: B.P. Satia, Chief FIPL, FAO Headquarters, Rome, Italy; e-mail: FIPL-Inquiries@fao.org; Internet: http://www.fao.org/waicent/faoinfo/fishery/meetings/meetingf.htm #99MINIST.

    WTO HIGH-LEVEL SYMPOSIA ON TRADE AND ENVIRONMENT AND TRADE AND DEVELOPMENT: Senior trade officials will hold open dialogues with NGOs in two high-level symposia organized by the WTO: trade and environment on 15-16 March 1999, and trade and development on 17-18 March 1999. The symposia will take place in Geneva. For information, contact: Jorge Vigano, Trade and Environment Division; tel: +41-22-739-5078; Internet: http://www.wto.org/wto/hlms/highlevel.htm.

    WORKSHOP ON ECO-EFFICIENCY: This workshop, organized by the Environment Directorate of the OECD and Environment Australia, will meet from 15-18 March 1999 in Sydney, Australia. It will be followed by a roundtable including all stakeholders to promote eco-efficiency. For information contact: Louise Emmett, Environment Australia; tel: +61-2-627-41111.

    SUSTAINABLE FISHERIES – OPTIONS FOR THE FUTURE: This conference, organized by the Marine Stewardship Council, will take place from 19-20 April 1999 in New York. For information, contact: Brendan May, External Affairs Director, Marine Stewardship Council; tel: +44-171-350-4000; fax: +44-171-350-1231; e-mail: Secretariat@msc.org; Internet: http://www.msc.org.

    SECOND ASIA-PACIFIC CLEANER PRODUCTION ROUNDTABLE AND TRADE EXPO: This meeting will be held in Brisbane, Australia, from 21- 24 April 1999. For more information, contact: the Queensland Cleaner Production Task Force Association (QCPTA), Australia; e- mail: enquiry@globalgroup.com.au.

    UN CONVENTION ON THE LAW OF THE SEA: The States Parties to UNCLOS will meet from 19-28 May 1999 to deal with a number of issues, including the election of seven of the 21 judges of the Tribunal. For more information, contact: the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea, Office of Legal Affairs; e-mail: doalos@un.org; Internet: http://www.un.org/Depts/los/.

    COASTAL ZONE 99: Coastal Zone 99 - The People, the Coast, the Ocean: Vision 2020 - will be held in San Diego, California, from 24-30 July 1999. For information, contact: Urban Harbors Institute, University of Massachusetts at Boston; tel: +1-617- 287-5570; fax +1-617-287-5575; e-mail: CZ99@umbsky.cc.umb.edu.

    SECOND INTERGOVERNMENTAL MEETING OF EXPERTS ON THE EL NIŅO PHENOMENON: This meeting will take place in Lima, Peru, in September 1999. For more information, contact: Dr. Rudolf Slooff, OCHA/IDNDR Secretariat; tel: +41-22-798-6894; e-mail: info@dha.unicc.org; Internet: http://www.reliefweb.int/ocha_ol/onlinehp.html.

    UNGA SPECIAL SESSION TO REVIEW IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PROGRAMME OF ACTION FOR THE SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OF SIDS: A two-day Special Session of the UN General Assembly to conduct a full and comprehensive review and appraisal of the implementation of the POA for the Sustainable Development of SIDS will convene in New York immediately prior to the 54th Session of the General Assembly in September 1999. For more information, contact: Deonanan Oodit; tel: +1-212-963-4671; fax: +1-212-963-4260; e- mail: oodit@un.org; Internet: http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/sids.htm.

    INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON CONSUMPTION: "Down to Earth – Sustainable Consumption in the 21st Century" will be held in Hampshire, UK, from 22-24 September 1999. It will be hosted by Project Integra and supported by UNED-UK, Onyx Aurora - Integrated Waste Management, and Hampshire County Council. For more information, contact: Conference Administration, Index Communications Meeting Services; tel: +44-1794-511331/2; e-mail: icms@dial.pipex.com; Internet: http://www.down-to-earth.co.uk/.

    THE ROLE OF NGOs IN THE 21ST CENTURY: The 1999 Seoul International Conference of NGOs will be held in Seoul, Korea, from 10-16 October 1999. For more information, contact: Tripartite Steering Committee; tel: +82-346-570-7160; fax: +82- 346-570-7156; e-mail: ngo99@gip.kyunghee.ac.kr; or tel: +1-212- 986-8557; fax: +1-212-986-0821.

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS FORUM ON SUSTAINABLE CONSUMPTION AND PRODUCTION PATTERNS: The International Business Forum on Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns will take place in Berlin, Germany, from 11-13 October 1999. The Forum is organized by the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) in conjunction with UNEP. For more information, contact: Dr. Luiz Ramalho, Bernhard Adam, and Maria de la Paz de Azevedo of the Carl Duisberg Gesellschaft e.V.; tel: +49-30-254-82-257; fax: +49-30-254-82-103; e-mail: gre11- gast@cdg.de.

    DESERTIFICATION AND THE EL NIŅO PHENOMENON: This meeting will be held in La Serena, Chile, from 12-15 October 1999. For information, contact: Dr. Rudolf Slooff, OCHA/IDNDR Secretariat; tel: +41-22-798-6894; e-mail: info@dha.unicc.org; Internet: http://www.reliefweb.int/ocha_ol/onlinehp.html.

    PROPERTY RIGHTS AND FISHERIES: The Government of Western Australia, in cooperation with the FAO, is sponsoring the Conference on the Use of Property Rights in Fisheries Management in Perth, from 15-17 November 1999. For information, contact: e- mail: rmetzner@fish.wa.gov.au; Internet: http://www.fishrights99.conf.au.

  • This issue of the Earth Negotiations Bulletin Š (enb@iisd.org) is written and edited by Paola Bettelli (pbettelli@hotmail.com), Peter Doran (pfdoran@ecology.u-net.com), Laura Ivers (laurai@iisd.org) Kira Schmidt. (kiras@iisd.org) Rajyashri Waghray (rsw24@columbia.edu) and Lynn Wagner, Ph.D. (lynn@iisd.org) . The Editor is Pamela Chasek, Ph.D. (pam@iisd.org) and the Managing Editor is Langston James "Kimo" Goree (kimo@iisd.org). The Sustaining Donors of the Bulletin are The Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Government of Canada (through CIDA), the United States (through USAID) and the Swiss Agency for Environment, Forests and Landscape. General Support for the Bulletin during 1999 is provided by the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID), the German Federal Ministry of Environment (BMU) and the German Federal Ministry of Development Cooperation (BMZ), the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the European Community (DG-XI), the Ministries of Environment and Foreign Affairs of Austria, the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Environment of Norway, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Environment of Finland, the Government of Sweden, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the Ministry for the Environment in Iceland. The Bulletin can be contacted by e-mail at (enb@iisd.org) and at tel: +1-212-644-0204; fax: +1-212-644-0206. IISD can be contacted by e-mail at (info@iisd.ca) and at 161 Portage Avenue East, 6th Floor, Winnipeg, Manitoba R3B 0Y4, Canada. The opinions expressed in the Earth Negotiations Bulletin are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of IISD and other funders. Excerpts from the Earth Negotiations Bulletin may be used in non-commercial publications only and only with appropriate academic citation. For permission to use this material in commercial publications, contact the Managing Editor. Electronic versions of the Bulletin are sent to e-mail distribution lists and can be found on the Linkages WWW server at http://www.iisd.ca/linkages/. The satellite image was taken above New York City(c)1999 The Living Earth, Inc. http://livingearth.com. For information on the Earth Negotiations Bulletin, send e-mail to (enb@iisd.org).

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