NGO Background Papers
Energy & Water
by the UN CSD NGO Steering Committee
Access to water and to energy is indispensable for the satisfaction of basic needs and is intrinsically linked to poverty. People living in poverty spend relatively more in money or time obtaining energy and water, with the burden often falling on the labour of women. The statistics demonstrate that about 2 billion people live without access to modern sources of energy for cooking or lighting and even more live without access to safe drinking water or sanitation services. Policies, which directly address the creation of opportunities for people living in poverty to improve the level and quality of their water and energy services, are central to poverty eradication but policy makers have neglected the water-poverty and energy-poverty nexus.
Conditions of access must be acceptable and affordable to local people and conform to environmental objectives. As well as socio-political and economic instabilities, common constraints in both sectors are low levels of consumption, low levels of income and decentralised populations, making it harder to bridge the gap between supply and demand. Without access to water or energy, socio-economic disparities will become more widespread throughout societies. Furthermore, to stabilise global population growth at low rates of mortality and fertility, depends on such goals as improving the household living environment (water, sanitation, fuel for cooking), and enabling women and children to invest their time on education rather than survival tasks. Again, this cannot be achieved until people living in poverty have access to reliable, affordable and safe supplies of water and energy, key natural resources that must be supplied and consumed in a sustainable manner. For as long as people are marginalized in the process of development, they will remain poor and sustainable development goals will only be achieved in conjunction with a redistribution of power and resources through institutional reform.
WATER FOR BASIC NEEDS
Freshwater is a precious resource, essential for all forms of life and a common heritage of humanity, yet its future is far from secure as humans continue to destroy the ecological base of the water supply. Water is considered a basic human right and the link between poverty and access to water is clear. Poor people spend a very high proportion of their time or income obtaining water to meet their basic needs, and thus effectively subsidise the water use of the rich and powerful. A growing scarcity and competition for water, in quantity and quality, threatens advances in poverty eradication, public health and food production. Poverty persists in water scarce areas. The effects of pollution and over-exploitation of groundwater aquifers have disproportionate impact on the poor and socially vulnerable. Water for basic ecosystem requirements is essential for supplying water for sustainable human development. Water management has a strong gender dimension; women deal with utilising and conserving water resources on a daily basis but are often excluded from decisions regarding its management.
The reasons for the water crisis are mainly socio-economic and geo-political. International trade in food, energy, tourism and other commodities affects water resources and the hydrological cycle. Globally and nationally, there are vast social disparities in the quantity and quality of water consumed. Inequitable resource allocation means that poorer nations, communities and people have the greatest difficulty in establishing their claims to adequate supplies of clean water, when and where needed.
2. The Challenges
Access to water for basic needs requires increased investment throughout the water sector, but financial inflows must respect national development priorities and investment policies must always take into account the value of environmental goods and services supported by freshwater ecosystems. The positive externalities associated with improved access to clean water will benefit society at large. Governments must ensure the integral involvement of civil society in defining and monitoring the use of resources through transparent, democratic and gender balanced participatory mechanisms. More funds need to be disbursed directly to those at the local level who will manage the resource.
Capital budgets should prioritise for adequate and reliable water services delivery to the poor and the landless, most of which are women. In developing and transitional economies the public sector is the major capital investor. Public investments will invariably require securing a loan agreement, which should preferably be water-specific. Funds could also be realised if governments honoured existing initiatives, such as the agreement to contribute 0.7% of GNP to ODA and the 20/20 initiative and by cancellation of the bilateral and multilateral debts of the developing and in particular the LDCs.
Private sector investment in water is increasing, but is unlikely to directly improve coverage for poor people. Foreign private sector capital is concentrated in urban and industrial areas and in middle-income developing countries, with Sub-Saharan Africa accounting for less than 1% of total investment. Private capital investment usually bypasses the poor because their demand is relatively lower, costs of provision higher and they cannot pay for water. The various types of private sector activities must be critically assessed in the local context and used to inform policy developments. For example, in many situations it will be appropriate to recognise and support the role of the existing informal private sector that already provide local water services within their locality. Privatisation as a conditionality of aid or a public loan is not acceptable. However, if water services are delegated to the private sector, companies must be made accountable to all water users through regulations, which ensure adherence to any national sustainable development objectives. Regulations must have been developed with the participation and approval of all stakeholders through democratic and gender-balanced mechanisms. Privatisation presupposes a strong capacity within the public sector to develop and enforce regulations. As a matter of course, foreign investors should be legally obliged to integrate national water and development objectives into their business plans.
It is crucial to address public sector reform and to promote innovative partnerships between public, private and community organisations for the delivery of water services. Informal and community/household investments are very significant in many regions, but this sector is as yet little understood or recognised as important within the mainstream of decision makers.
The linkage between poverty eradication and water security, including water for ecosystems, needs prioritising and funding by international development agencies and intergovernmental organisations. Funding policies currently favour large-scale projects, whereas in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity, donor agencies should target micro-scale water projects that offer good models of successful participatory water resource management and service delivery.
To the extent that political economy considerations rather than purely market forces drives the allocation of resources, explicit recognition of and respect for water as a basic right is institutionally important. More equitable systems of land tenure and institutional support are needed to improve the accessibility of water, especially for women. People need a reliable source of affordable quality water close to their place of residence.
Cooperation and participation is the key. While the State has primary responsibility to ensure access to water for basic needs, it cannot shoulder the sole responsibility. Access and control over water resources is essential for livelihood security. The experience of NGOs shows that motivated and empowered communities manage their own water projects well, but the mechanisms to ensure involvement of citizens and institutional representation of the user group need to be created. The principle of subsidiarity, whereby public water supply and management occurs at the most available local level was approved at UN CSD6 and enthusiasm for participatory watershed management is growing. Local points of entry to participatory decision making need to be regularly reviewed and openly discussed. Participatory management should be an iterative and strategic process that results in improved quality of services for poor people and women. It requires the legal provision of full, free and equal access to information and decision making and other democratising measures to create an enabling environment. NGOs and other community based and women’s organisations can cooperate to provide better access to information.
As recommended in Agenda 21, each country should adopt a national water policy. A legislative framework, if developed in partnership with all stakeholders at all levels, would be a good basis for proper river basin management and could formalise effective civil society participation. The cross-sectoral nature of water means that national and international policies need to be coherent and coordinated, and water impacts should always be taken into account.
Although governance in the sector is changing, many government institutions still lack adequate human and financial capital to manage the reform. National governments need to develop a clear strategy to guide the selection of water-related projects and to assist in proper monitoring and evaluation.
Service providers must invest in ‘unlocking’ the water needs and demands of all people. Few examples of large-scale private sector investments have achieved this, as it is perceived to be time-consuming and costly. Whereas, community managed programmes, water users associations and small private enterprise offer users the chance to drive the process of defining and meeting their own needs and are often the best integrators of social, economic and environmental objectives.
Infrastructure development is a critical step in inclusion/exclusion of access to water and investors have a constructive role ensuring equitable access and inclusion of the water conveyed and not to merely reinforce existing local power elites.
Appropriate indicators, sensitive to differences regarding gender, ethnicity and place of residence, should be developed and used to monitor the links between access to water and poverty levels. Governments in co-operation with other stakeholders should begin to formulate benchmarks in the area of water supply and sanitation.
Equity and social justice should guide and inspire the mechanisms for bearing collectively the costs of water services to safeguard the quality and quantity of water for all life, whilst providing affordable water for the poor. Greater water efficiency might be achieved by charging for water use, but the price must relate to the nature of consumption and account for the environmental cost of water use. Suitable mechanisms need to be developed for full cost transparency and classification of water price. The socio-economic implications of subsidies, full cost recovery policies and compensatory mechanisms must be addressed in full and open public debate, and for this debate to lead to policy development. The locally experienced impacts of different demand management tools urgently need to be assessed.
The locally experienced water impacts of production and consumption patterns need to be critically and frankly reviewed in all regions, and used to inform good practice and policy reform.
The primary goal of river basin management and restoration should be to enable rivers and watersheds to perform their many ecological functions and to benefit people who rely on them for their basic needs. This should be integrated into any National Environmental Action Plan or National Strategy for Sustainable Development. Governments need to develop institutional means to ensure equity and efficiency in water use and allocation within the river basin and improve resource access for all. Greater transparency of the aims and method of land and water use planning is needed for local participation in river basin management.
Human activities cause many of the world’s floods and droughts, which affect water supplies - e.g. deforestation, soil erosion, large dams, climate change, and avoidance of these anthropogenic threats must become a priority at all levels.
Groundwater overexploitation for food production is a growing crisis in many semi-arid regions. It leads to depletion and pollution of the water table (e.g. salinisation, arsenic, fluoride pollution), posing a serious threat to the environment and people, particularly the poor. More research and political will is needed to address the issue of recharge and demand management, whilst providing a basic level of supply for the poor.
Inter-sectoral allocation of water must prioritise access and provision of water for people’s basic needs over and above broader economic interests. Improving the water use efficiency of manufacturing, agriculture and tourism should support this. Increasingly, water-intensive agriculture competes with urban as well as rural water needs, meanwhile traditional water efficient technologies are being abandoned and lost to history. Poor people need financial and institutional support to achieve a higher livelihood per drop of water. Access to irrigation water is crucial for small scale and poor farmers in rural and peri-urban areas, and requires widespread access to affordable appropriate technologies.
Pollution of water from urban, industrial and agricultural development is growing throughout the world and with it the risk of water related deaths and morbidity. Prior social, health, environmental and water impact assessment of water resource management projects as well as any large scale economic activity in the river basin is vital and must be made mandatory, giving full respect to community rights. Credit export agencies undertaking large-scale infrastructure projects have a particular duty to act.
Technology and know-how
De-materialisation, use efficiency and overall demand side management are key issues as the demand increases in all sectors and regions. Public policy needs to facilitate institutional changes and adopt technologies that will increase the ability of poor people to access water for their basic needs. However, strategies must always be tailored to the physical, cultural and socio-economic environments and it should be acknowledged that customary law and practises have an important influence in many regions.
Greater attention needs to paid to learning from the local experiences and scaling up successful micro-projects, based on traditional as well as new methods of water harvesting and management. The efforts and experience of NGOs, CBOs and Women’s groups are a valuable resource in this regard.
Fostering local competition will be important so that local industries can deliver low cost technologies appropriate for the small farmer or for community water supply and sanitation programmes. Technologies for rainwater harvesting and for recycling household grey water should be improved and used in both developing and developed countries, based on successful traditional methods wherever possible.
Simple soil and water conservation practices can improve infiltration and retention of water, reduce soil crusting and erosion and so provide some protection from drought. Vegetation cover and particularly tree cover in the watershed is important and these explicit linkages need to be explained clearly to the public. Properly planned, afforestation provides carbon sequestration services and other environmental and social objectives.
All stakeholders should cooperate with governments to develop national, regional and international water policies and do their utmost to ensure that landless, women, indigenous and poor people are fully included and respected at all stages of the policy process, from design to implementation and evaluation.
Stakeholders and government agencies should cooperate to improve access to information on water issues and to create easily accessible information systems that will enable effective, gender balanced participation in decision-making and management. The macro-level must be connected to the micro level. NGOs and women’s organisations, should collate information on small-scale water supply or conservation projects as well as documenting the impact of other large-scale development projects.
With respect, patience and flexibility, governments and NGOs can be effective partners in delivering community water supply, sanitation and irrigation programmes. NGOs, Women’s groups, CBOs and governments can collaborate on hygiene education work and other water-related public education initiatives, such as the importance of vegetation cover in the watershed. NGOs can assist governments to formulate and monitor standards at the national level. Programmes that support the capacity of local NGOs to monitor the water quality of aquatic ecosystems using indicator species can also be very successful.
Regional and international networks of environment and development NGOs should be set up to work together on water policy, good practice and monitoring.
The private sector can work with local NGOs to uncover the water needs and demands of local communities and to inform the design of appropriate technologies. NGOs can also enter into partnerships with the private sector for the actual supply of water services and sanitation. All sectors should work together to increase research and development and dissemination of affordable appropriate technologies among poor people and communities.
Water users can form associations for the management of their own water supplies; these have proved most successful when women have taken the lead.
NGOs and government should work together to educate all stakeholders on the importance and meaning of participatory water resource management and to improve all people’s awareness of their rights and the existence of participatory policies. There might be a need to develop common frameworks of participation and multi-stakeholder processes.
Greater integration between local national and international levels of governance are necessary, particularly because the environmental and economic impacts of water are experienced locally but relate to national and international issues of governance and policy.
UNEP could begin to create technology transfer and good practice databases in water resource management and map information on populations without access to safe water. Data collection and analysis must always be sensitive to gender, ethnicity and place of residence.
4. International cooperation up to 2002 and beyond
Precautionary Principle: International political commitment is required now to prevent a water crisis of unmanageable proportions. Policies must be supported by a commitment to action.
Democratic Accountability: Global and regional institutions operating in the water sector must be made more accountable to people.
Institutional Coordination: A strategy must be developed to prevent a fragmented approach. It will be more productive to have proper cooperation between major institutional players whose work impacts on access to water. The UN should develop a harmonised approach to water through the UN system.
Integrated Policy Making: The crosscutting nature of water requires integrated policymaking. Governments are urged to ratify and implement RAMSAR, Convention on Biodiversity, Convention to Combat Desertification, the Kyoto Protocol and other relevant conventions and regional agreements.
Regional cooperation: Regional cooperation is essential to mobilise political and financial support and for the practical aspects of managing transboundary river systems, floods and droughts.
Agenda 21, Chapter 18: The International Conference on Freshwater (December 2001) should be used to critically assess progress meeting the agreed objectives and consider how to follow through with a more action-orientated approach.
Water-Poverty Nexus: The water-poverty nexus should be prioritised on the international political agenda and Rio + 10 Summit provides the appropriate political context. In preparation, governments can organise national and regional multi-stakeholder consultation processes.
Finance and Resources: International financing must be re-orientated towards increasing locally initiated processes and supporting small-scale projects that offer the best chance of integrating sustainable development objectives.
A Global Code of Conduct and Enforcement Strategy for water management and water pricing should be developed, particularly with regard to industrial pollution of freshwater.
ENERGY FOR A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE
Hundreds of millions of households over the world either do not have access to modern energy sources or are dependant on energy that is unsafe and expensive. The disproportionate amount of time and money spent on energy by poor households means that the substitution for safer and more efficient energy would confer sizeable gains in household purchasing power.
Access to energy has several important gender related aspects. In most countries, women are responsible for household tasks such as cooking, heating and washing. Lack of access to energy creates huge burdens of workload and costs for women, who are the majority of the poor. Lack of access to energy is an obvious constraint on transport facilities for poor people and for women. The goal should be to achieve equitable access to sustainable energy for all.
In general, sources of energy are either accessible to everyone and undervalued by the policy makers ((e.g. biomass) which has resulted in the tragedy of the commons (e.g. deforestation, soil erosion) or are governed by market sources which make it unaffordable to poor communities. People need access to a diverse supply of energy sources that reflects difference basic needs requirements.
The relationship between access to energy and poverty are complex. Poverty is characterized by low energy consumption. If poverty is defined as a limited realisation of entitlements, access to energy interventions should be designed to expand the opportunities to consistently realize these entitlements, however, without the means to translate access to energy into tangible economic benefits or better quality of life then there is a need for focussed interventions that translate the access to increased utility. Energy is also one of the prime contributors to the environmental problems faced today and it is imperative that energy is produced, distributed and consumed sustainably, with minimum impacts on the environment or human health within the environmental space available to communities, nations or regions.
Challenges and possible strategies
Current energy strategies are based on supply and directed primarily by large fossil fuel, nuclear or hydro energy companies. Such strategies are untenable in the long term as they are environmentally unsound, socially inequitable and economically inefficient. The transition to a more sustainable future requires political vision, long term planning and full community involvement at all stages of planning and implementation.
Solutions must respond to the needs of poor people. Lack of adequate financial and technical resources and inadequate funding mechanisms are among the stumbling blocks acting against universal access to energy. As discussed in the NGO background paper, ‘ Access to Water for Basic Needs’, debt burdens act against government programmes aimed at widening access to energy. Bilateral and multilateral ODA has to be substantially increased while more financial resources have to be mobilised so that existing resources can be used more effectively.
Multilateral financial mechanisms need to focus on extending access to energy in developing countries. However structural reform programmes (e.g. to facilitate private sector investment) must only be taken up after ensuring that there are enough social safety nets. To create an atmosphere amenable for financial inflows, governments can use public loans, but domestic energy policies must strongly advocate for universal access and thus define and influence all related activities.
The question of subsidies is complex and requires participatory cross cutting analysis and open debate with all stakeholders. In general, subsidies for polluting energy technologies should be phased out. Cross-subsidises among rich and poor user groups may be needed to support access to energy, although well-targeted support programmes can be more effective.
Institutional factors can make or break any well-meaning energy policy having the goal of universal access. The absence of an investor-friendly climate (including government policies) hinders development of the energy sector and in turn affects access. Absence of proper regulatory mechanisms, or properly functioning financial and legal systems, often breed’s corruption and inefficiencies in the production and distribution of energy.
In the energy sectors of many developing countries there is a need for setting up of independent regulatory mechanisms and large scale regulatory reforms.
Regulatory reform should however strike a fair balance between incentives to producers/suppliers on the one hand and passing on of benefits (cost savings) to consumers on the other. Regulatory authorities should consult regularly with consumers, women, indigenous people and other stakeholder groups and prioritise the problem of access. There is also a need to increase public awareness about all aspects of access to energy including importance of energy conservation and energy efficiency.
Improving access to energy will markedly improve welfare if adequate infrastructure is already present. Energy policies should take into account this fact. Governments also have a responsibility to lower transaction costs for individuals, communities and other private entities that are willing to invest in infrastructure.
One strategy is to commission large power projects, however they serve to reinforce existing inequitable socio-economic power structures and have unacceptable environmental impacts. Additionally developing countries often don't have the systems management capacity to handle such projects.
An energy market where a number of institutions offer a range of services and where stakeholders have enough scope to rally participate in the decision making process, would be a goal worth pursuing. Therein consumers would be free to choose the kind and quality of service they need.
In order to reach communities living off-grid requires a decentralised, integrated, community based approach in which local people participate directly in the management of energy resources and there is collaboration and participation of stakeholders at all levels.
There is a big gap between the energy needs of people and the proposed solutions that ignore local demand. One of the prime constraints is the lack of availability of good demand data, which has a negative effect on access. Designing appropriate energy services involves understanding patterns of energy use, energy technologies suitable to convert energy into a useful service for local people and the type and amount of energy consumed. Policies and projects that obtain and analyse this information need urgent support and integrated cooperation at all levels and requires a real commitment to work with people at the local level, in a transparent, gender balanced and problem solving orientated manner. Service providers must invest in ‘unlocking’ the needs and demands of all members of communities. Few examples of large-scale private sector investments have achieved this, as it is perceived to be time-consuming and costly. Community managed programmes however offer users the chance to drive the process of defining and meeting their own needs and are often the best integrators of social, economic and environmental objectives.
The economic and technological energy model employed in industrialized nations is too dependent on fossil fuels, nuclear and large-scale hydropower sources of energy. These are not viable strategic options for a sustainable and equitable future and should not be relied upon due to the many negative environmental, social and health impacts. The dominance of these fuels undermines support for cheap local energy resources, (e.g. biomass, plant oils) and renewable fuels for energy production and so constrain the process of extending access. Demand driven services would assist diversification of energy supplies and technologies. Traditional labour intensive technologies could be improved and combined with modern, capital technologies. The aim is to achieve effective social solutions, which benefit those living in poverty.
Questions of access must obviously address inefficient energy use in production, distribution and consumption in all sectors, particularly water, energy, agriculture, tourism, transport and manufacturing industries. Energy lost in these systems detracts from energy that could augment access for those living in poverty, assuming adequate supply/distribution. Consumption and consumer behaviour patterns need to be examined more closely to develop appropriate information strategies and initiate behavioural changes. Economic incentives are not the only measure to impact energy consumption and in many instances is not viable.
Access to renewable sources of energy is the optimum goal, but the relative expense is excluding many countries and people. Governments, multilateral financial institutions and the private sector must invest in the development and distribution of these technologies so that they become cheaper in the long run. Also financial support (e.g. micro-credit) should be forthcoming for small businesses and other initiatives, which promote sustainable renewable energy technologies. This would also help in the establishment of a level-playing field.
Until social and environmental costs of energy production and consumption are reflected in pricing mechanisms, the price of energy will remain distorted. The energy sector in all countries should internalise such social and environmental externalities. Proper pricing of energy will help in the gradual shift to a sustainable fuel mix. This would also help in deepening access because if prices reflect real costs it will be found that sustainable forms of energy are cheaper in the long term. Also many sustainable forms of energy are easier to produce (e.g. Micro-hydro is simpler and easier than large hydro, bio-mass plants are simpler than gas turbines or coal-fired power stations) and the lower associated infrastructure costs improves accessibility to the poor. Subsidies similarly should be taken into consideration when calculating real costs. If full cost recovery is implemented, cross-subsidising that guarantees access for poor people would be essential, although targeted social programmes often serve that purpose better.
Public monopolies supplying energy are generally insensitive to the needs and demands of user groups. Significant differences exist between women and men, social groups and different income level, place of residence and education. If energy service companies can act in a responsible and responsive manner to the needs of poor households, they should replace public monopolies. It is hoped that greater competition in the energy market will improve the quality, cost and conditions of energy access. However, a liberalized energy sector must be properly regulated so that the private sector is made accountable is made accountable to all stakeholders through regulations which ensure adherence to national sustainable development objectives and which have been developed with the participation and approval of all stakeholders through democratic and gender-balance mechanisms. This presupposes a strong capacity within the public sector to develop and enforce regulations. As a matter of course, foreign investors should be legally obliged to integrate national development objectives into their business plans.
Technology and know-how
Technology transfers to developing countries are often not accompanied by necessary skill transfers, which prevent the full utilisation of the new technology at minimum costs. Sharing good practice and results of case studies might encourage companies or governments in developing countries to take a risk on new technologies. Joint ventures with companies, public utilities and community based organisations in developing countries, would assist technology transfer. Closer collaboration and trust between partners from the North and the South is needed in the future.
New efficient and renewable energy technologies such as solar cells, micro-turbines, fuel cells and other devices are beginning to trickle into the commercial market. They can provide energy of a low capacities, which is e therefore better matched to the scale of need of poor households. They allow for decentralised, low environmental impact and a more easily managed energy system, which can be scaled up as the need arises. Collaboration is required between manufacturers in industrialized countries and local stakeholders in developing countries to ensure that product development meets their needs.
Over-specification of technical and quality standards in developed countries has meant high costs of electrification. This acts as a constraint, preventing further expansion of network services and design standards suitable for areas with low electrical loads can appreciably bring down the cost of supplying electricity in developing countries. The simplification of wiring codes and using load limiters rather than consumption-based meters (for low consumption areas) can significantly reduce installation, billing and collection costs. Such cost savings can act as incentives for improving access.
Barriers to the adoption of energy-efficient technologies in the production and consumption needs targeted interventions (e.g. awareness raising, government incentives, information-sharing), supported by national government programmes and multilateral funding mechanisms like GEF. If successful these will result in better management of the demand-supply gap and improve access.
Existing low-cost sustainable energy technologies suitable for remote areas and small user groups need to be publicised and supported. There should be a clearinghouse of information about such technologies, their costs, records of success, applicability etc and governments and private institutions should take an active interest in making these technologies popular and widely using the same to extend access.
The technologies used to generate energy in the future should be increasingly be based on renewable and be sustainable in the long run. This would mean a shift away from nuclear, fossil fuels, large scale hydro-power to bio-mass, small hydro, wind, passive solar and the like.
There are immense possibilities and opportunities for partnerships at all levels. Alliances need to be forged between user groups, civil society, women, indigenous people, industries, utilities, scientists and governments. Civil society can catalyse these partnerships but they need high-level support. To ensure that discussions are translated into action, a multi-stakeholder approach offers the best way to build consensus and achieve commitment for successful implementation. Appropriate, democratic multi-stakeholder fora at all levels to debate, discuss, innovate and improve upon these and come up with new ideas and means for achieving the common goal of universal access.
4. Strategy for International Cooperation up to 2002 and beyond
Regional Collaboration: For effective and coordinated mobilisation of political and financial support, there must be greater commitment for sub-regional, regional and continental cooperation.
Energy-Poverty Nexus: International political and financial support to target access to energy as a means to fight poverty in all countries, North and South, prioritising demand management, renewable energy and locally initiated action.
Renewable Energy: International political support to agree to promote renewable energies and to phase out the dependence on fossil fuel economy.
Kyoto Protocol: The Kyoto Protocol must be ratified and emissions reduction commitments must be met.
Rio + 10: This Summit should be used as a catalyst for horizontal and vertical multi-stakeholder discussions on the issue of energy, based on careful identification of stakeholders and conducted in a democratic and gender balanced manner with transparent links to decision -making, implementation and evaluation.
Overall integrated conclusion.
The guiding principles of sustainable development have been laid out in the Rio Declaration. For the UN CSD process and preparations for Rio + 10, it will be important to strengthen the social and economic aspects of sustainable development and to analyse and acknowledge the contribution of inclusive, transparent and democratic participatory processes, where they are transparently linked into the decision making processes, at all levels, including inter-governmental considerations.
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