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Showing posts from October, 2014

Still time to send in abstract for the 2015 Nexus Conference - Water-Energy-Food-Climate

Preparation for the Nexus Conference 2015 (energy, Food, Water and Climate) continues a pace. Still time to get your abstract in (10th of November). Abstract themes are: Sustainable and Resilient Development at a Local LevelTransboundary, National and Local Nexus GovernanceCorporate Stewardship of the NexusFinancing in a Nexus WorldSustainable AgricultureWater Stress, Vulnerability, and HealthManaging Resources: Optimizing Co-Demands
If you haven't submitted yet please do and get engaged in the Nexus.

Financing for Development (FfD) or How are we going to pay for the the SDGs

As many of you know I've been pushing the Sustainable Development Finance conversation in the FfD process. With the two co-facilitators working hard to get input into the process these additional informal conversations on aspects of the FfD agenda which is described as:

The six chapters of the Monterrey Consensus focus on mobilizing financing for development
from all available sources, with chapters on domestic (public and private) financial
resources, international private flows and international financial and technical cooperation
(international public flows), as well as on the importance of the enabling domestic and
international environment for development, including in chapters on trade, external debt
and systemic issues.

A holistic financing framework for sustainable development will need to build on these
chapters and address additional challenges. Specifically, it will need to:

be mindful of changes and continuities in the financing landscape extend the focus to encompass a…

Professor Anthony Kelly Our VC

I just opened Surrey Forever my Universities Alumni newsletter to see the sad news that Professor Anthony Kelly 'our Vice Chancellor' of Surrey University had died.



As an undergraduate at Surrey University I had the pleasure of seeing and experiencing our VC, as he liked to be called, during a difficult time when the government was  increasing tuition fees for overseas students and self financing students.

In March 1977 like other universities across the country we prepared to go into occupation over the tuition fees increase which would come in in September. I was elected to be Press Officer for the occupation which had been endorsed nearly unanimously at a meeting of over 1500 students. We then marched on the University Senate building where the University Senate was actually meeting about the same issue under its very able Vice Chancellor Tony Kelly.
A small group of us went into the Senate meeting room and informed those present very politely that we were now occupying the b…

Will we be asked to pay the cost of stranded oil assets in the climate change process?

It has been an interesting six weeks on the issue of climate finance.
The most recent prophetic announcement was around the UN Secretary General’s Climate Summit. It is becoming clearer daily that climate change WILL pose a risk to the value of present investments. There were 350global institutional investors representing around $24 trillion in assets calling for government leaders across the globe to put a price on carbon, to help redirect investment on the scale required to combat climate change.
Rockefeller Brothers Fund (RBF) disinvestment from fossil fuels
For those who did not read the finance pages, The Rockefeller Brothers Fund, a charitable foundation set up in 1940, has been working from 2010 to align its endowment investments to be consistent with the foundations Sustainable Development program goals. 
RBF announced in September: “Given the RBF’s deep commitment to combating climate change, the Fund is now committing to a two-step process to address its desire to divest fr…

SDGs the Way Forward

2015 will be here very soon
We have come a long way from the meeting in Solo in July, 2011 when Paula Caballero Gomez from Colombia floated the idea of Sustainable Development Goals as the replacement for the MDGs in 2015 with the support of the governments of Guatemala and Peru.
For those who have been part of the discussion, the last 3 and half years shows how difficult it can be to develop policy at the intergovernmental level. It also has been one of the most open and transparent processes that I have seen while working at this level for 25 years.
The first few months saw the UN DPI NGO Conference in September 2011 put forward the first suggestions of goals and targets. This was followed by the government retreat in Colombia in November 2011. This was the first time the governments discussed the idea and it was interesting to see the initial opposition from a number of the development Ministries’ donor countries to the idea of anything other than an MDG+ agenda. One felt you coul…

Commonwealth Heads of Government on the United Nations Post-2015 Development Agenda -

Statement of Commonwealth Heads of Government on the United Nations Post-2015 Development Agenda
We, Leaders of the Commonwealth, representing over 2 billion people and over one quarter of the United Nations membership in our 53 member states, with extensive diversity in our growth and development, present the following shared views on the Post-2015 Development Agenda.
Our perspectives on the Post-2015 Development Agenda are based on our shared values and principles as expressed in the Commonwealth Charter as well as our individual experiences. We welcome the inclusive inter-governmental process in the United Nations to achieve a concise, compelling, ambitious and balanced development agenda beyond 2015, building on and reinforcing existing agreements, and recognising the many outcomes that may feed in to the intergovernmental process.
We welcome the contributions made by the UN Secretary-General’s High Level Panel of Eminent Persons, the Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Go…

Nexus Conference 2015 -Water-Energy-Food-Climate open for Abstracts

Following the success of the 2014 Nexus Conference a 2015 one will be held from the 15th to the 17th of March in Chapel Hill North Carolina.

The 2015 Nexus web site is up at  and the areas for the 2015 conference abstracts have been agreed and they are: 
Sustainable and Resilient Development at a Local LevelTransboundary, National and Local Nexus GovernanceCorporate Stewardship of the NexusFinancing in a Nexus WorldSustainable AgricultureWater Stress, Vulnerability, and HealthManaging Resources: Optimizing Co-DemandsYou have until the 31st of October to submit 
The Nexus 2015 conference will again have an opportunity to input to the Sustainable Development Goals process and will bring together in March governments, intergovernmental organizations, academics, local government, the private sector, NGOs and other stakeholders.
The output from the 2014 conference were: A declarationA popular cartoon video 
The development of teaching materials on the NexusJoining the advisory board for the 2015…