France representing the European Union
I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union. The countries of Central and Eastern Europe associated with the European Union (Bulgaria, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, the Czech Republic, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia) and the other associated countries (Cyprus, Malta and Turkey) align themselves with this statement.
The European Union sets great store by the implementation of commitments made at the Rio Conference. It therefore considers the success of the ten-year review, scheduled for 2002, as one of its priorities.
The European Union welcomes the reflection held
during the eighth session of the Commission on Sustainable
Development (CSD) on preparation for the Rio+10 Summit, which
produced Commission Decision 8/1.
The Union is satisfied with the decision taken by that
Commission to convert itself, at its tenth session, into a
Preparatory Committee for the Summit, and the Union welcomes the
fact that it will meet as such in New York as of next spring.
The Summit should obviously be taken as an
opportunity to study the implementation of Agenda 21. But the
European Union also expects this gathering of policticians at the
highest level to reaffirm the commitment of the States to
sustainable Development around the environmental economic and social
pillars. Against this
backdrop, it wishes to remind the proposal it made at CSD 8 to call
Rio+10 ‘World Summit on Sustainable Development’.
For the EU, the links between environment between environment
and poverty and between environment and health and security, the
reversal of the decline of natural resources (such as water and
energy) through a more efficient use, the changes in production and
consumption patterns, the strengthening of the institutional
architecture in the field of sustainable development, including the
role of the CSD, and the analysis of new challenges and
opportunities that have emerged since the Rio Conference, are among
the themes which should be dealt with at the Summit.
The European Union considers that
representatives of civil society, including to a greater extent than
in the past the business sector, should be closely involved in
preparation for and the management of the ‘Rio+10’ Summit, and
is pleased to note that several regional events are being organised
under the auspices of the United Nations as a part of the process.
The Union dearly hopes that a swift solution will be found as
to which country will organise the Summit.
The European Union remains at the disposal of
its partners to enter into constructive in-depth dialogue with them
on how to make a real success of the ‘Rio+10’ Summit, to provide
fresh impetus for sustainable development and for the implementation
of Agenda 21.
I would also like to say a few words on
underpinning the complexity of international instruments of the
environment and sustainable development.
The European Union would like to reaffirm its firm belief
that even though the various conventions are at different stages of
implementation, it is imperative that cooperation be strengthened
between the secretariats and boards responsible for implementing
them in order to increase their impact on the ground. The Union Welcomes the constructive work carried out by UNEP
in this area and cannot but rejoice that the Secretary-General’s
report on the subject reveals substantial headway in the matter. The Union also hopes that the work in the Environmental
Management Group will help stimulate synergy between the various
In this context the European Union would like to repeat that it would prefer the conventions on desertification, climate change and biological diversity to be dealt with in a single General Assembly resolution.