Edited by Stephen Tully
Chapter 75: UNCED: Agenda 21, 1992
Commentary: Although initially contemplating tighter regulatory control, the 1992 Rio Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) acknowledged the positive contributions of business to sustainable development, supported free market mechanisms and promoted self-regulatory approaches: UNTCMD (1992), ‘TNCs and Sustainable Development: A Review of Agenda 21’, New York; UNTCMD (1993), ‘Follow-up to UNCED as Related to TNCs’, New York, UN Doc E/C.10/1993/13. For commercial perspectives, see Schmidheiny S./WBCSD (1992), Changing Course: A Global Business Perspective on Development and the Environment, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press; Willums J.-O. and Goluke U. (1992), From Ideas to Action: Business and Sustainable Development, The Greening of Enterprise, Oslo: ICC International Environmental Bureau. UNCED’s principal outcome – Agenda 21 (UNCED Report, UN Doc A/CONF.151/26/Rev.1 (1992), Vol 1) – is a comprehensive global plan of action for intergovernmental organisations, governments and others with respect to poverty reduction, consumption, human health and settlement, deforestation, managing ecosystems, agriculture, biodiversity and protecting the atmospheres, seas, land and freshwater resources. The roles and responsibilities of ‘industry’, ‘the private sector’, ‘business’ and ‘transnational corporations’ feature prominently throughout Agenda 21. See further, Integrating Environment and Development in Decision-making (Chapter 8); Environmentally Sound Management of Biotechnology (Chapter 16); Environmentally Sound Management of Toxic Chemicals (Chapter 19); Environmentally Sound Management of Hazardous Wastes including Prevention of Illegal International Traffic in Hazardous Wastes (Chapter 20); Environmentally Sound Management of Solid Wastes and Sewerage-Related Issues (Chapter 21); Safe and Environmentally Sound Management of Radioactive Wastes (Chapter 22); and the Transfer of Environmentally Sound Technology, Cooperation and Capacity-Building (Chapter 34). At UNGA’s...
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