At the start of the Earth Summit, Greenpeace produced a checklist for success. So how did the politicians do in Johannesburg?
The Earth Summit listened to the voices of the Big Busines, not the needs of the planet.
Many Heads of State spoke eloquently about the need to address
the most pressing environmental and development issues of our day.
They talked (and talked, and talked) about kick-starting an energy
revolution that would put clean, reliable, renewable energy into
the hands of the planet's poorest people and help stem the progress
of Global Warming. Many said the Summit's success would be judged
by how well it addressed the issue of Climate Change. Those same
politicians failed to do a damn thing new about these issues.
The best thing that can be said in the Summit's favour is that
it could have been worse.
For example, a last minute scramble to remove text which would
have required environmental protection agreements to be consistent
with the rules of the World Trade Organisation was a major victory
- had the previous text remained it could have undone the last 20
years of work to protect the international environment.
So how do the results measure up against our original Checklist
for a Successful Summit? Here's
the Summit's Report Card.