Rio+20, an environmental summit whose outcome made all unhappy
By Associated Press, June 23, 2012
RIO DE JANEIRO — It was hard to find a happy soul at the end of the Rio+20 environmental summit.
Not within the legion of bleary-eyed government negotiators from 188 nations who met in a failed attempt to find a breakthrough at the United Nations conference on sustainable development.
Not among the thousands of activists who decried the three-day summit that ended late Friday as dead on arrival. Not even in the top U.N. official who organized the international organization’s largest-ever event.
“This is an outcome that makes nobody happy. My job was to make everyone equally unhappy,” said Sha Zukang, Secretary-General of the conference, nicely summing up the mood.
In the end, this conference was a conference to decide to have more conferences.
That result was hailed as a success by the 100 heads of state who attended. Given how environmental summits have failed in recent years as global economic turmoil squashes political will to take on climate and conservation issues, the mere fact of agreeing to talk again in the future constitutes victory. Continue reading