The global Green Cross network has submitted its proposals for the June 2012 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20). The Green Cross submission feeds into the zero draft of the Rio+20 outcome document and focuses on promoting peace, environmental protection and poverty eradication efforts as key components of a holistic model of sustainable development needed for our global population and planet.
Green Cross International was created in 1993 in response to a call made during the 1992 Rio Earth Summit to create a “Red Cross for the environment” that would apply the emergency response model to ecological issues and trans-‐border environmental crises.
Today, Green Cross operates in over 30 countries and works through advocacy and on-‐the-‐ground projects to address the nexus of environmental degradation, security and poverty eradication.
Two decades since the idea for a “Green Cross” was floated, we return to Rio for the 2012 UN Conference on Sustainable Development as a fully-‐fledged global organization, determined to help maximize the outcome of Rio+20.
Green Cross recognizes the United Nations position that “eradicating poverty, changing unsustainable patterns of production and consumption, and protecting and managing the natural resource base of economic and social development are overarching objectives of and essential requirements for sustainable development.”
This same premise was also well understood in 1992, but clearly not enough has been done in the 20 years following to respond to such realities.
We cannot afford to allow another two decades to pass without taking urgent, concrete action on these fronts. Failure could result in irretrievable consequences. Success, however, can ensure a brighter future for humanity today and tomorrow, as well as for the planet that sustains us.
Official UN Rio+20 website: UN Conference on Sustainable Development 2012