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UN Chronicle. 1989 Jun; 26(2): p..The proposed blueprint for UNDP in the 1990s will be hammered out in a series of informal meetings between March and May, when it is expected to be made public. The go-ahead was given by UNDP's Governing Council at a special three-day session in New York, in February. The high-level plenary will be part of the Council's 36th regular session, scheduled from 5 to 30 June. With some 5,000 projects worth about $7.5 billion in more than 150 developing countries and territories, UNDP is the United Nations main development aid operation. It is also the world's largest multilateral channel for technical and pre-investment assistance. (excerpt)
UN Chronicle. 1990 Dec; 27(4): p..A new Programme of Action aimed at advancing the world's poorest countries offers a "menu approach" for donors to increase their official aid to the least developed countries (LDCs), stressing bilateral assistance in the form of grants or highly concessional loans and calling on donors to help reduce LDC debt. The Programme was adopted by consensus at the conclusion of the Second United Nations Conference on the LDCs (Paris, 3- 14 September). The UN recognizes more than 40 developing countries as "least developed". Although individual nation's indicators vary, in general LDCs have a per capita gross domestic product (GDP) of approximately $200 a year, a low life expectancy, literacy rates under 20 per cent and a low contribution of manufacturing industries to GDP. Reflecting the emergence during the 1980s of new priorities in development strategy, the Programme of Action for the LDCs for the 1990s differs from the Action Programme adopted at the first UN Conference on LDCs held in 1981 in Paris. The new Programme emphasizes respect for human rights, the need for democratization and privatization, the potential role of women in development and the new regard for population policy as a fundamental factor in promoting development. Greater recognition of the role of non-governmental organizations in LDC development is also emphasized. (excerpt)
Indicators for monitoring the Millennium Development Goals: definitions, rationale, concepts and sources.
New York, New York, United Nations, 2003 Oct.  p.This handbook contains basic metadata on the agreed list of quantitative indicators for monitoring progress towards the 8 goals and 18 targets derived from the Millennium Declaration. The list of indicators, developed using several criteria, is not intended to be prescriptive but to take into account the country setting and the views of various stakeholders in preparing country-level reports. Five main criteria guided the selection of indicators. They should: Provide relevant and robust measures of progress towards the targets of the Millennium Development Goals. Be clear and straightforward to interpret and provide a basis for international comparison. Be broadly consistent with other global lists and avoid imposing an unnecessary burden on country teams, governments and other partners. Be based to the greatest extent possible on international standards, recommendations and best practices. Be constructed from well-established data sources, be quantifiable and be consistent to enable measurement over time. The handbook is designed to provide the United Nations country teams and national and international stakeholders with guidance on the definitions, rationale, concepts and sources of the data for the indicators that are being used to monitor the Millennium Development Goals. Just as the indicator list is dynamic and will necessarily evolve in response to changing national situations, so will the metadata change over time as concepts, definitions and methodologies change. (excerpt)
Development Bulletin. 2002 Jul; (58):16-19.It is commonly accepted among development agencies that poverty and environmental degradation are intricately linked. All donor or development agencies have recently made that link explicit, and accepted a concept of poverty that is more than simply cash-based or economically defined. Like other development banks and development assistance agencies, the World Bank and AusAID have a policy focus on reducing poverty, which they define in terms of income generation, vulnerability and other aspects of livelihood or well-being. Marjorie Sullivan (2001) undertook a brief analysis of how the links between poverty and environment can be addressed through development assistance. She concluded that it is not possible to undertake an adequate poverty analysis as a basis for identifying project interventions without considering long term (post project) sustainability, nor without fully considering resource use. That analysis must include the explicit links between poverty and environment, and the more contentious issue of ecological sustainability (to address ecosystem services concepts), and how these can be incorporated into the management of development assistance programs. (excerpt)
In: An agenda for people: the UNFPA through three decades, edited by Nafis Sadik. New York, New York, New York University Press, 2002. 175-188.This analysis looks at the United Nations Population Fund's (UNFPA's) work in the area of population-environment-development linkages. It then analyses the collective effects of 6 billion people, their consumption patterns, and resource use trends, in six different critical resource areas. (excerpt)
Human development report 2003. Millennium Development Goals: a compact among nations to end human poverty.
New York, New York, Oxford University Press, 2003. xv, 367 p.The central part of this Report is devoted to assessing where the greatest problems are, analysing what needs to be done to reverse these setbacks and offering concrete proposals on how to accelerate progress everywhere towards achieving all the Goals. In doing so, it provides a persuasive argument for why, even in the poorest countries, there is still hope that the Goals can be met. But though the Goals provide a new framework for development that demands results and increases accountability, they are not a programmatic instrument. The political will and good policy ideas underpinning any attempt to meet the Goals can work only if they are translated into nationally owned, nationally driven development strategies guided by sound science, good economics and transparent, accountable governance. That is why this Report also sets out a Millennium Development Compact. Building on the commitment that world leaders made at the 2002 Monterrey Conference on Financing for Development to forge a “new partnership between developed and developing countries”—a partnership aimed squarely at implementing the Millennium Declaration—the Compact provides a broad framework for how national development strategies and international support from donors, international agencies and others can be both better aligned and commensurate with the scale of the challenge of the Goals. And the Compact puts responsibilities squarely on both sides: requiring bold reforms from poor countries and obliging donor countries to step forward and support those efforts. (excerpt)
In: The global possible: resources, development, and the new century, edited by Robert Repetto. New Haven, Connecticut, Yale University Press, 1985. 491-519. (World Resources Institute Book)Participants at the Global Possible Conference in 1984 concluded that, despite the dismal predictions about the earth, we can still fashion a more secure, prosperous, and sustainable world environmentally and economically. The tools to bring about such a world already exist. The international community and nations must implement new policies, however. Government, science, business, and concerned groups must reach new levels of cooperation. Developed and developing countries must form new partnerships to implement sustained improvements in living standards of the world's poor. Peaceful cooperation is needed to eliminate the threat of nuclear war--the greatest threat to life and the environment. Conference working groups prepared an agenda for action which, even though it is organized along sectoral disciplines, illustrates the complex linkages that unite issues in 1 area with those in several others. For example, problems existing in forests tie in with biological diversity, energy and fuelwood, and management of agricultural lands and watersheds. The agenda emphasizes policies and initiatives that synergistically influence serious problems in several sectors. It also tries to not present solutions that generate as many problems as it tries to solve. The 1st section of the agenda covers population, poverty, and development issues. it provides recommendations for developing and developed countries. It discusses urbanization and issues facing cities. The 3rd section embodies freshwater issues and has 1 list of recommendations for all sectors. The agenda addresses biological diversity, tropical forests, agricultural land, living marine resources, energy, and nonfuel minerals in their own separate sections. It discusses international assistance and the environment in 1 section. Another section highlights the need to assess conditions, trends, and capabilities. The last section comprises business, science, an citizens.
Americas in harmony. Health and environment in sustainable human development. An opportunity for change and a call to action.
Washington, D.C., PAHO, 1996. vii, 42 p.This report presents summaries of the presentations, views, recommendations, and criticisms of the 1995 Pan American Conference on Health and the Environment in Sustainable Human Development. This conference was convened in response to government and societal commitments, the current global crisis, and the effects of ongoing global changes. Inequities and social injustices have assumed large proportions. The economy is an end in itself, regardless of the needs of humankind. There is a lack of permanent, balanced, genuine, open, and effective dialogue, especially between economic parties that formulate national policies and development plans and parties in the social domain. The conference aimed to foster increased and shared understanding of the links between health, environment, and sustainable development. The aims also were to formulate effective ways for integrating social needs and health and environmental concerns within national policies, plans, and development programs; and to find means of support. It is expected that the conference will bring about appropriate national and hemispheric dialogue, stronger political leadership, and opportunities for coordinating technical and financial international assistance and cooperation in support of national processes. Seven panel discussions focused on a variety of country, regional, and Charter strategies. An open forum addressed community participation in practice. Seven addresses focused on sustainable development. The report focuses its chapters on the present and future context and 10 areas for action.
In: Race to save the tropics. Ecology and economics for a sustainable future, edited by Robert Goodland. Washington, D.C., Island Press, 1990. 171-89.Sustainability denotes well-being, intergenerational equity, minimal use of exhaustible mineral reserves, slow depletion of nonrenewable energy resources allowing an orderly societal transition to renewable energy sources, and agricultural sustainability. Many parts of the world have already surpassed their carrying capacity. To effectively apply environmental management to economic development, decision makers must understand the fundamental relationship among growth, equality, and ethics. Liberation of women and reduction of excess consumption by the rich are needed to achieve environmental sustainability. We have been able to solve some environmental problems once they have reached a crisis stage by investing money into their solution. Prevention is the only means to address irreversible environmental effects, however. The major reason for biodiversity loss is destruction of tropical forests which support 50% of the world's 5-30 million species on 7% of the land area. A large percentage of the biodiversity in the Philippines, Haiti, El Salvador, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and parts of India is already gone. Some corporations have begun to respond responsibility to the environment. In 1987 the largest investor in economic development in developing countries, the World Bank, implemented environmental policies for all programs. The Bank normally refuses to finance projects designed to convert wildlands of special concern, e.g. to national parks. Projects concerning wildlands other than those of special concern should only occur on already converted land. A more open decision making process is required to justify any deviations from the above policies. If wildlands development is defended, the project should just convert less valuable wildlands. Financing preservation of another wildland is required for any conversion of wildlands not of special concern. If a project does not involve conversion of wildlands, the Bank requires the preservation of wildlands for their environmental services alone.
In: The population debate: dimensions and perspectives. Papers of the World Population Conference, Bucharest, 1974. Volume I. New York, New York, United Nations, 1975. 77-123. (Population Studies, No. 57; ST/ESA/SER.A/57)The Secretary-General's commentary on the state of population growth, resources, and the environment examines the most important relationship. Conflicts in resource use and distribution and essential resources are identified: potential water and land resources for agriculture, availability of potential arable land, new technology, carrying capacity, capital needs, the imbalance between population and arable land, energy needs, agricultural modernization, nonfuel mineral resources, and energy resources. The relationship between rapid population growth and the environment may be one where man is indeed capable of reducing the environmental consequences to tolerable level through reallocation of resources. There a 3 sets of environmental problems: 1) those related to poverty and inadequate social and economic development; 2) those arising from the development process itself; and 3) those which could have a major impact on climate or environmental conditions and are not well understood. The environmental problems of developed countries pertain to high levels of energy use and the problems of affluence. In poor countries, environmental problems are caused by rapid population growth and urbanization, and poverty. Environmental destruction from mining and transportation are discussed along with the need for conversion to alternative forms of energy and reduction of polluting energy use. Developing countries' problems focus on water supply and waste disposal, the benefits of environmental improvement, and the global changes possible in climate, carbon dioxide emissions, and particulate matter in the atmosphere. "Hot spots" from fossil fuel combustion and nuclear fission are occurring; accurate data, improved analytical models, and international cooperation in monitoring and analysis is essential. Settlement patterns and the costs plus the internal organization of large urban areas are some of the problems examined. Rural development, rural-urban migration, and population redistribution are other issues of concern. Urban development and urban growth strategies reflect the potential need to curb urban migration and a new settlement system. Technology's impact on population, research gaps, and policy implications are revealed. Definitions of societal objectives are necessary before deciding what technology is needed.
PEOPLE AND THE PLANET. 1992; 1(1-2):8-10.UNCED is about human beings managing their affairs so that all can achieve a reasonably good life without destroying the life-supporting environment. Currently human activities are approaching an upset of environmental balance through production of greenhouse gases, depletion of the ozone layer, and reduction of natural resources. Equity is the right to a decent life for the current human population of 5.5 billion and the future 10 billion expected within the next 50 years. A minimum use of environmental space/person is required. The Earth Summit will be a broad statement of environmental policy. Agenda 21 includes 115 action programs within 40 chapters. Separate conventions will be held on climate and biodiversity. The secretariat of UNCED has been working primarily with Agenda 21. Population issues are emphasized in Chapter 5 ("Demographic Dynamics and Sustainability") of the first section in Agenda 21 on Social and Economic Dimensions. The program areas include 1) research on the links between population, the environment, and development; 2) formulation by governments of integrated national policies on environment and development, which account for demographic trends, and promotion of population literacy; and 3) implementation of local level programs to ensure access to education and information and services in order to plan families freely and responsibly. Increases in funding for the population program are anticipated to be US $9 billion by the year 2000 and about US $7 billion/year until then. The year 2000 will bring with it a doubling of urban population in developing countries. There are challenges and opportunities to expand private sector job creation, education, clean water, and family health services. In addition to managing human settlements, there is also management of fragile ecosystems, which means relieving the pressure on these lands through urban migration or relocation to richer agricultural areas. The goal for agriculture is to triple food outputs over the next 50 years without increasing land use; improved soil and management systems are needed. Ocean/seas protection from pollution and provision of an adequate, clean water supply are other challenges. Demographic transition must be completed in order to improve global development success.
Revue Tiers-Monde. 1992 Apr-Jun; 33(130):455-69.The concept of sustainability as currently conceived is multidimensional, and assumes an acceptance of responsibility toward future generations. This work reflects on the aspect of sustainable development related to the need to preserve elements of the physical environment necessary for human well-being. Ecological problems weighing on developing countries include rapid rates of population growth and urbanization, problems in administration of nuclear energy, toxic residues and wastes from agriculture and industry, deforestation, and air and water pollution, among others. Ecological problems in the developing countries are similar to those in developed countries but tend to be caused by poverty rather than by affluence. Developing countries are often hostile to the question of environmental conservation, accusing the rich countries of wishing to prevent them from industrializing. But pollution control measures taken at an early stage are cheaper and easier in the long run than control of toxic wastes. The goal of sustainable development is more growth, but growth of a qualitatively different type. Less polluting techniques and materials are needed. It has been demonstrated that environmental regulations do not necessarily result in a loss of competitiveness. An equitable division of the costs of environmental protection is needed so that if necessary the poorer countries can be compensated for direct and indirect costs sustained by their environmental protection measures. The not yet industrialized countries should be able to learn from the mistakes of the industrialized countries and avoid the worst errors. Pollution at the local, regional, and world levels should be distinguished as part of the process of exerting control over resources. Just as the endowment in factors of production guides the allocation of resources as a function of comparative advantage, differences in the costs of pollution should be a principle orienting international industrial specialization. It is probably less costly to combat pollution in developing countries, and polluting activities of the industrialized countries should be displaced to them. Nature products should be preferred over synthetics having a high tendency to pollute. Developing countries need to undertake activities to protect their nonrenewable resources. More equitable pricing policies would encourage economical use of these resources. Coordinated action will be required from countries possessing such resources. There is as yet no world institution capable of reconciling the interests of individual countries with the need to protect the world's environment. A small step in the direction of creating such an institution was taken with creation of the Pilot Mechanisms Relative to the World Environment by 25 industrialized and developing countries. It is expected to become operational in mid-1991.