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Shaping policy for development

An overview of Lagoro IDP camp in Kitgum District, northern Uganda, 20 May 2007. Manoocher Deghati/IRIN
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Separated at birth, reunited in Rio? A roadmap to bring environment and development back together

May 2012
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Tackling climate change, avoiding environmental degradation, reducing inequality and eliminating poverty are all key issues for international policy in the 21st century. Is it possible to achieve progress on poverty while remaining within environmental limits? What role can global agreements play in promoting positive action on both environmental and development issues?

Clearly there are significant overlaps between these issues. Dirty development causes climate change, climate change impacts poor people, and the health of ecosystems and availability of environmental resources shapes economic growth and well-being. 

2015 will be a defining year for international policy on development and the environment. However, the history of trying to link development and environmental objectives through actual policy initiatives is not encouraging. ‘Sustainable development’, a concept originating in the Brundtland Report of 1987, has become the mantra in global policy circles since the first Rio conference in 1992, but it has had remarkably little impact on actual policy.

This paper sets out to explain why reconciling the two agendas has been so difficult at a practical level, and suggests how Rio+20 could start to bridge the gaps between the two.

An output of the following project: 
Climate and Environment
Growth, Poverty and Inequality
Downloads

Executive Summary - Separated at birth, reunited in Rio? A roadmap to bring environment and development back together (pdf, 160.25k, 8 pages)

Full report - Separated at birth, reunited in Rio? A roadmap to bring environment and development back together (pdf, 177.44k, 8 pages)