Showing posts from November, 2012

The Lost Sandy speech to UN Committee 2 side event

Sustainable Development in the twenty first century On the 29th of October i was due to fly to New York and give a speech at a UN Committee Two side event organised by the EU and UN DESA. As all of you will know that was the day that Sandy struck. The 'lost speech' as i now refer to it was on a project that Stakeholder Forum and a number of other organisations had been involved with in the run up to Rio+20. The concept was put together by David LeBlanc of UNDESA and the UN Rio+20 Secretariat. The objective of  ' SustainableDevelopment in the 21st century ' (SD21) was to construct a coherent vision of sustainable development in the 21st century. It took stock of the changes having occurred since the Earth Summit in 1992, and provides a vision and way forward for the international community, national governments and other stakeholders in advancing the sustainable development agenda in an integrated manner .  SD21 had a number of studies that were b

Dreaming of a green Christmas

VIEWPOINT Felix Dodds and Michael Strauss Environmentalists Felix Dodds and Michael Strauss had this published in an earlier form in the BBC's Green Room (2009). They pass on from a seasonal contributor an important message: "Though he usually prefers to act anonymously, he has been rumored to be active in many different countries under various personae that include Father Christmas, Pere Noel, and San Nicolas." Dear children, As many of you know this time of year is very busy for me. The elves are also really busy, making the Obama dolls (although they appear to be less popular than last year), the train sets, and the computer games. But before I pack up the sleigh and set off on this year's big ride, I wanted to share with you an update on how things are going. I wanted to share with you some worries I have, because here at the North Pole it has been a difficult year. Dancer hurt a leg earlier this year and almost had to be replaced in thi

Energy, Food and Water Nexus

Trends  on energy, food and water nexus I have for the last twenty years worked on sustainability at the global level and the last four years on the Rio+20 Conference  - which was a success - unlike what the media may have said. The conference focused on four themes: review of previous commitments institutional framework for sustainable development . green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication ; emerging issues   On the review of previous commitments my previous organization Stakeholder Forum did an assessment for the UN and found a lot had not been implemented and I could go into why but that is not the theme of today's talk. On the institutional  framework for sustainable development it is clear that the institutions that were set up over the last forty years at all levels were needing reform and updating. Rio did that for both theglobal bodies   UN Environment Programme  which was made a universal body and the UN C

Mike Harksin 1963 to 1992

This year was the twentieth anniversary of Mike Harskin's death. Mike had been a friend and a political activist of enormous talent.Th ere was a celebration of his life in the House of Lords on the 25th of October which I was very sorry not to be able to attend.   Mike died at the age of 29 and was at the time one of the group of Young Liberal (UK) who had in the 1980s been known as the ' Green Guard' . He had gone on to edit the  Liberal Parties   weekly newspaper  Liberal News   and to be a very successful councillor in Brent as well as the parliamentary candidate for Brent East - a seat the Liberal Democrats (UK) now hold. He played a critical role in gaining press for the Young Liberals throughout the 1980s - often in unusual circumstances. In 1979, the Liberal Party adopted had adopted a "no growth" economic policy and became a magnet for young people interested in  green politics . On foreign policy they not only continued the tradition of

A Global Call to Action for Sustainable Development:

Today I   had the pleasure to participate on a panel moderated by Maher Nasser, Director, Outreach Division UN DPI  with; Jeffrey Sachs , Director of The Earth Institute and Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development at Columbia University; Special Adviser to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon and Director of the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network. N ikhil Seth,  Director of the Division for Sustainable Development, United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN-DESA).   Cassandra Dutt,  Civil Engineering, Theater and Architecture major in the Integrated Degree in Engineering and Arts & Sciences (IDEAS) Honors Program, Lehigh University Class of 2013. Mark Orrs,  Director and Professor of Practice, Sustainable Development Program, Lehigh University.    We were discussing  the  challenges to sustainable development, with a focus on mobilizing and preparing youth to become prob