17.6.2012 The Preparatory Committee, tasked with negotiating the Rio+20 outcome document concluded Friday night’s session with only 37% of the text agreed. Opinions on the food and agriculture section differed, and there was general concern that the wording remained weak. As for sustainable agriculture, a handful of countries still refused to insert a reference to cutting greenhouse gas emissions and the paragraph on sustainable livestock systems lacked clear commitment. With respect to agricultural extension services, partial agreement was reached, but the inclusion of the term ‘voluntary’ watered down a commitment to share knowledge. A paragraph on the causes of excessive food price volatility was, however, finally agreed. On Saturday, Brazil, as the host country, took over the leadership of these ‘Informal Consultations’, and is now trying to finalise the text before Heads of State arrive in Rio on Wednesday. Brazil has subsequently presented a streamlined 50-page compromise text, which attempts to meet developing nations’ demands. This text included a reference to the transfer of money and technology, but gave no clear pledges or figures. Brazil’s compromise text does, however, strengthen the protection of oceans which played a central role in the new round of talks, but it no longer refers to the right to water. The European Union criticised the text for its lack of concrete goals, measures and time frames, and the little ambition it shows in many other sectors.
UNCSD Prepcom III: Friday, 15 June 2012
Rio+20 deal weakens on energy and water pledges