Monday, 30 April 2012
Tuesday, 24 April 2012
Government, business leaders and activists to converge in Rio in June at UN global gathering to advance action for a sustainable future WHAT Rio+20: UN Conference on Sustainable Development At Rio+20, world leaders, CEOs and civil society are expected to take decisions, announce commitments and galvanize action on how we can reduce poverty and inequality and ensure environmental protection on an ever more crowded planet. In official negotiations, statements and round tables, and at over a thousand special events, government, business and NGO leaders are expected to set the sustainability agenda for the next 20 years, towards identifying solutions and goals to tackle urgent global challenges, such as lack of access to energy and clean water, depleted oceans, food insecurity, widening inequalities and rapidly expanding cities. They will also decide ways to boost corporate sustainability, create green jobs, advance the role of science and innovation, close technological gaps, generate needed financing and improve mechanisms for international cooperation. WHO More than 100 presidents and prime ministers, as well as UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Conference Secretary-General Sha Zukang, will be joined by thousands of business CEOs, parliamentarians, mayors, NGO leaders, academics, senior UN officials and representatives from many other groups at Rio+20. Over 50,000 people are expected to participate in the Conference and related events in Rio de Janeiro during that period. WHEN KEY MEDIA EVENTS AT A GLANCE (See more details on pp. 4-6) 23 April – 4 May – Negotiations for the outcome of Rio+20 (New York) 13-15 June --Final negotiations for the outcome of Rio+20 (Rio) 13-22 June -- Global Town Hall: Mayors and local government officials from around the world will address how they can best contribute to targets for protecting global common goods. 15-18 June -- Rio+20 Corporate Sustainability Forum:More than 2,000 business leaders, academics and civil society representatives will showcase innovative solutions to sustainable development challenges and announce new commitments to bring greater scale and quality to corporate sustainability practices. 15-23 June – People’s Summit for Social and Environmental Justice:Mobilized by 150 organizations and social movements, thousands of citizens will make their voices heard and urge governments to give political power to Rio+20. 16-19 June -- Global Sustainability Dialogues:Nine high-profile events over four days, organized by the Government of Brazil, will engage civil society and leading experts to seek innovative solutions on global sustainability issues. 20-22 June -- Rio+20: UN Conference on Sustainable Development WHERE Official events will be held at Riocentro Convention Center, Barra da Tijuca, with other events taking place throughout Rio de Janeiro. Below is a summary of information members of the media may need to know when making their plans to cover Rio+20 Media accreditation The deadline for media accreditation is 14 May 2012. Media accreditation is strictly reserved for members of the press: print, photo, radio, television, film, news agencies and online media who represent a bona fide media organization (full guidelines as well as accreditation forms are available at http://www.un.org/en/media/accreditation/request.shtml ). Accreditation will be granted upon presentation of the following documents: • Letter of assignment on official letterhead of a media organization signed by the publisher or editor-in-chief indicating the name and duration of assignment of the journalist. The letter should be addressed to Isabelle Broyer, Chief, Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit, United Nations Secretariat, Department of Public Information. It should be sent as a scanned document in jpeg or pdf format to firstname.lastname@example.org. • Passport-size colour photographs of all listed media representatives. All photographs must be taken not more than six months prior to the Conference and must be in jpeg format.The person must be looking directly into the camera; it should be a portrait-type photo showing the shoulders to the top of the head; there should be no sunglasses or hats unless the hat is culturally or religiously significant; and only a plain white background. If a submitted photo is found not to meet these criteria or is unacceptable for other reasons, the individual may be asked to come to the badge issuance area to take a new photo. • Completed online accreditation form. Media may pick up their badges starting from Thursday, 7 June 2012, in the Accreditation Centre located in Pavilion 1 of the Riocentro Convention Center. For more details see http://www.uncsd2012.org/rio20/registrationnewsandmedia.html#registration Accommodation Accommodation levels in Rio de Janeiro are anticipated to be at full occupancy during the conference. While it is not the responsibility of the United Nations to procure accommodation for the media, it should be noted that the Brazilian national organizing committee for Rio+20 has committed to blocking a minimum of 500 hotel rooms in Rio de Janeiro for media covering the conference. Costs must be covered by the media. For more details, visit: http://www.rio20.gov.br If you are having difficulty securing accommodation, please contact the UN Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit, Robin Dellarocca, email@example.com, tel.+1 212-963-7165. She will forward your contacts to the appropriate authorities in the Government of Brazil who are arranging hotel room bookings for accredited media. Please note that contacts will only be forwarded to the Brazilian Authorities once media accreditation has been approved. Visa requirements A visa for entry into Brazil may be required. Participants are strongly advised to seek information on requirements applicable in their case from Brazilian diplomatic or consular missions in their home countries. A list of the Brazilian diplomatic and consular missions can be obtained at: http://www.itamaraty.gov.br/o-ministerio/o-brasil-no-exterior. Where a visa is required, applicants are strongly advised to apply as early as possible. (Please note, however, that visas for citizens of certain countries must be used within 90 days of the issuance date.) Transport The Riocentro Convention Center is situated in Barra da Tijuca, Rio de Janeiro, approximately 50 minutes by freeway from the center of Rio de Janeiro and a 40-minute drive from Rio de Janeiro International Airport. The Convention Center consists of five Pavilions, all of which will be in use during the Conference. For more details on the Convention Center’s location and transport options, please visit: http://www.riocentro.com.br/ or http://www.rio20.gov.br/useful_information?set_language=en. More details on possible shuttle buses to Rio+20 and other details will be provided as they become available. Media Centre A Media Centre for the use of all journalists accredited to cover the Conference will be located in Pavilion 3 of the Riocentro Convention Center. The Media Centre will be equipped with appropriate electrical power outlets for personal laptop computers, telephones, fax facilities and closed-circuit television. Staff from the UN Department of Public Information will be on hand to provide information, respond to queries and interview requests, and print out statements and documents on demand. There may be limited seating available for print media in the plenary hall, as well as limited space for TV, photo and official delegation media representatives. The main meetings, round tables, press conferences and other activities will be broadcast live into the Media Centre. There will also be overflow rooms when certain meetings reach capacity. Press conference: A full schedule of press conferences will be organized by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Conference, including regular briefings by the Spokesperson. The main briefing room will be in the Media Centre, with smaller briefing rooms in other locations. A schedule of press briefings will be posted in advance on-line and a media alert will be sent out by e-mail each evening for the following day, with updates as needed. Multi-media: The UN Department of Public Information will provide comprehensive TV, radio, photo, print and Internet coverage of the official plenary statements, round-tables and press conferences at Rio Centro. Webcasting: All plenary statements, round-tables, press conferences and some side events held within Riocentro will be webcast. Website: Multi-media coverage and webcasts will be posted on the official Rio+20 website at: http://www.uncsd2012.org. Multilingual press materials will be available at: http://www.un.org/futurewewant. Broadcast: Audio-visual and sound feeds of the main meetings, round-tables, press conferences and other events will be provided to broadcasters live, with free plug-in recording facilities. International Broadcast Centre: More information on commercial providers for satellite uplinks and other services will be issued when available. Digital Media Lounge: An area for use by bloggers without media credentials will be made available and staffed in the NGO and “major groups” area. It will be equipped with desks with plug-ins for laptops and a video camera in a small glass studio. A line-up of possible interviews will be organized. Social Media: The United Nations will tweet from the @UN and @UN_Rioplus20 Twitter accounts, with the hashtags #rioplus20 and #futurewewant Rio+20: a PaperSmart Conference The UN is putting sustainable development into practice at Rio+20 through its PaperSmart initiative, to minimize paper use and the conference’s overall carbon footprint by encouraging use of digital documents and resources whenever possible. Official documents, statements, press releases and the conference press kit will only be made available digitally. In addition, services will be provided to facilitate the transfer of documents to mobile devices of delegates and participants. There will be extremely limited print-on demand services when needed. Media covering Rio+20 on-site should carry their laptops or mobile devices including eReaders. Accredited press will receive media alerts and advisories by e-mail. Key Media Events The latest listing of key events to take place during Rio+20 at the official conference site can be found at: http://www.uncsd2012.org 20-22 June: Rio+20: UN Conference on Sustainable Development The opening session of the Conference will begin on Wednesday, 20 June 2012, at 10am. The high-level opening ceremony -- with statements by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Dilma Rousseff, President of Brazil -- will begin at 3 pm that day. Statements by heads of each government delegation and selected representatives from civil society will continue in the plenary for the three days of the Conference. The webcast and text of each statement can be found on the conference website. Press can be seated in the gallery on a ticketed basis, and visual media can be escorted to cover particular speakers. The schedule of speakers is not posted on-line but can be e-mailed on request when available. Four high-level round-tables will be held in parallel with the plenary statements, starting at 4:30pm on 20 June. These will be televised and webcast, but there will be no press seating in the room, and no set speaking order. There will be dozens of special events and unofficial meetings taking place at Riocentro parallel to the conference, including a partnership forum and learning centres, as well as special events. Further details on these events and other key meetings will be posted to the official Rio+20 Conference website as they develop. 13-15 June: Final negotiating session for Rio+20 Government representatives will hold a third and final preparatory meeting ahead of Rio+20 to conclude key negotiations on agreements to be adopted at the conference. Press access is limited, but media briefings will be held to update on progress. Media briefing for journalists covering Rio+20 (TBC) UN officials and experts will provide media with background on the key issues for decision at the conference, as well as a preview of events and commitments expected to be announced. Information will be shared on logistics, arranging interviews, press conferences, where to find press materials, statements and documents, and much more. Details to come. Below is a selected list of events ahead of and during Rio+20, outside of official negotiations: 8-12 June: Youth Blast Organized by the Rio+20 Major Group of Children and Youth, as the official young people's event for Rio+20, the Youth Blast will aim to empower children and youth present at Rio+20; offer leadership training; and provide a space for young people to share best practices for implementing solutions and participating in decision-making at the international level. Website: http://uncsdchildrenyouth.org/rio20/youth-blast/ Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org 11-12 June: TEDxRio+20 In partnership with the UN, TEDxRio+20 will bring together a wide-range of knowledge and ideas to help us understand and analyze the extent of human impact on our planet, and to recognize and refine our capacity to construct a new reality through sustainable development. Website: http://www.tedxrio20.com/ Contact: email@example.com 11-15 June: Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for Sustainable Development This Forum will host interdisciplinary scientific discussions and dialogue between scientists, policy-makers, major groups and other stakeholders. Website: http://www.icsu.org/events/ICSU%20Events/forum-on-science- Contact: Maureen Brennan, tel. +33 (0) 1 4525 0677, Maureen.Brennan@icsu.org 13 to 22 June: Rio Conventions Pavilion Convened by the Secretariats of the three global environmental agreements that came out of the 1992 Earth Summit -- the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, UN Convention to Combat Desertification and the UN Convention on Biodiversity, along with the Global Environment Facility and other partners -- the Pavilion will hold a two-week programme of events and activities and feature a retrospective exhibit, showing the contribution of these treaties to sustainable development. Presentations will focus on themes including oceans, cities, the green economy, gender and development. Website: http://www.riopavilion.org/ Contact: David Ainsworth, tel. +1 514 287 7025, firstname.lastname@example.org 13-22 June: Global Town Hall Organized by ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability, the Global Town Hall will address how to “green” the urban economy, and how local governments can best contribute to targets for protecting global common goods and improve global and local governance systems. Website: http://local2012.iclei.org/iclei-and-rio-20/rio-20-global-town-hall/ Contact: Francesca Schraffl, Rio+20 Global Town Hall coordinator, tel. +49 228-976 299 50, email@example.com 15-18 June: Rio+20 Corporate Sustainability Forum - Innovation and Collaboration for the Future We Want The Rio+20 Corporate Sustainability Forum (CSF) seeks to bring greater scale and quality to corporate sustainability and to produce a significant number of corporate commitments to advance sustainable development around the world. With 2,000 CEOs and other participants expected, and an ambitious agenda focused on scalable innovation and transformative partnerships, the Forum will be an impressive showcase of business action and leadership in support of the Rio+20 agenda. Website: http://www.compact4rio.org Contact: Matthias Stausberg, UN Global Compact, Tel. +1-917-367-3423, firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com 15-23 June: People’s Summit for Social and Environmental Justice Organized by over 150 groups and social movements from various countries, the People’s Summit will urge governments to give political power to the Rio+20 Conference and implement its decisions. Website: http://cupuladospovos.org.br/en/ Contact: Maurício Thuswohl: +55(21-8390-2111) / Tânia Coelho: +55(21) 8181-8616 / Verônica Couto: +55(11) 8372-8765 , Group email: firstname.lastname@example.org 15-17 June: Parliamentary World Summit of Legislators Organized by GLOBE International (Global Legislators Organisation for a Balanced Environment), this first-ever world summit of legislators will aim to drive international commitments into national legislation and also scrutinize the delivery of the commitments that governments make. Website: http://www.globeinternational.info/2011/rio-2012-globe-to-host-1st-world-summit-of-legislators/ Contact: Adam Matthews, tel. +44 (0) 20 7222 6955, email@example.com 16-19 June: Global Sustainability Dialogues The Government of Brazil is organizing four days of dialogue events at the Riocentro Convention Center, where up to 50,000 participants from civil society can connect and share ideas outside of the official UN programme. The aim is to generate innovative proposals for how sustainability can be applied to a range of issues, including: food security, poverty eradication, the economic crisis, sustainable energy for all; water; oceans; sustainable consumption and production; innovation and sustainable cities; unemployment, green jobs and migration. Website:http://www.rio20.gov.br or https://www.riodialogues.org 17-19 June: The World Congress on Justice, Governance and Law for Environmental Sustainability Organized by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), this event will bring together Chief Justices and senior judges, Attorneys-General and Public Prosecutors involved in the interpretation and enforcement of law, and Auditors-General whose work will focus on governance and accountability issues on the role of law in promoting the goals of sustainable development. Website: http://www.unep.org/dec/worldcongress/index.asp Contact: Jacob Duer, tel. +254-20-7624, Jacob.Duer@unep.org 18 June: Special Open Events on Sustainable Cities UN-Habitat and the City of Rio are organizing a range of events and conferences addressed to the general public and media to discuss challenges and opportunities of urban areas in the 21st Century. The aim is to generate debate, to gather innovative proposals and to achieve a sustainable approach to all aspects of rapid urbanization. The Special Open Events on Sustainable Cities will culminate with the official launch of the “I`m a City Changer” initiative – a global movement to raise awareness about positive actions that have demonstrated impacts on people`s lives in urban areas. Where: Forte de Copacabana. Accreditation will be required. Website:- www.unhabitat.org Contact: Ana Moreno, tel. +254 20 762 3065. firstname.lastname@example.org 19 June: Rio+Social A first-of-its kind technology and social media conversation focused on global issues related to sustainability and our planet’s future, the Rio+Social event will bring together the most innovative young players with the most influential public voices to discuss how technology can be used to create change that is citizen-powered and digitally inspired. Rio+Social will ensure, via an extensive digital broadcast, that journalists, young activists and social networks everywhere have a voice and a call to action on sustainable development. Organized by the UN Foundation with partners Ericsson, Mashable and the 92nd Street Y. Website: www.unfoundation.org Contact: Robb Skinner, tel. +1 212-697-3315, email@example.com 19-21 June: Women Leaders’ Forum: Gender Equality, Women’s Empowerment and Sustainable Development Organized by UN Women and the Government of Brazil, the Forum will gather women Heads of State and Government and other women leaders and proponents of gender equality. The Forum will culminate in a Summit on 21 June where leaders are expected to make a Call to Action to elevate women’s vital contribution to realizing sustainable development as well as benefiting from it. Website: http://www.unwomen.org Contact: Oisika Chakrabarti, tel. +1 646-781-4522, firstname.lastname@example.org 21 June: Special Event on the UN Secretary-General’s Sustainable Energy for All Initiative Key multi-stakeholder commitments are expected to be announced at this special event showcasing energy access, energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions with participation by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and co-chairs Kandeh Yumkella, Director-General, UN Industrial Development Organization, and Chad Holliday, Chairman of Bank of America, along with other leaders from government, the private sector and civil society. Website: http://www.sustainableenergyforall.org/ Contact: Cynthia Scharf, tel. +1 212-963-1016, email@example.com 21 June: Special Event on the Report of the UN Secretary-General’s Global Sustainability Panel Members of the High-level Panel on Global Sustainability will present the main recommendations they made in their report to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who will join the event. The recommendations are expected to play an important role in building consensus on decisions at Rio+20 and beyond. Website: http://www.un.org/gsp/ Contact: Georgios Kostakos, tel. +1 212-963-1466, Kostakos@un.org
Monday, 23 April 2012
The Nigeria we want can’t be achieved by talking, folding our arms but taking action. When President Good luck Jonathan gave Nigerians a new-year present of fuel subsidy removal, majority of the people troop to the streets of major cities across the country, clamoring for change to give us back our Nokia 65(#65) because he wanted Nigerians to use Nokia 141(#141). That action which made Nigeria the global topic while it lasted was what is now been called Occupy Nigeria. To some they felt the occupy Nigeria protest did not achieve anything but a final change to Nokia 97 (#97). For me I believed it achieved more than what some cynical thought. The Federal Government was made to understand that Nigerians can no longer be taken for granted and expect a siddon look stand from them any longer.
Back to the reason why I chose to write this piece, we were always told that we are the leaders of tomorrow but I tell you all: "that we are the leaders of now". The whole world is celebrating Earth day today. What kind of Nigeria do we want to see in 10-20 years’ time depend on what we do now, so that we can look back and say we got what we bargained for. According to the Governor of Lagos State Mr Babatunde Fashola, during the recently held fourth Lagos Climate Change Summit “we can no longer continue to live in blissful ignorance to the denial of climate change". Climate change is real and what are you doing in your own small way to reduce it effect. How are you treating this beautiful earth you were born into? Do you treat it as though you have a stake in it and want your children to be happy you were here before them?
We have a responsibility to treat the earth properly; the effect of climate change we are experiencing now is as a result of man’s accumulative disregard for the environment. Do we develop to the detriment of the earth, do we make profit and carry out businesses to the destruction of the environment. Must we pave our whole compound when building without allowing a space for trees and grass, what do you do with your waste? Do you throw it into a flowing drainage, stream or river, do you defecate into the river/streams in your community, do you use best practices in your production without polluting the environment, do you treat your waste or effluent and discharge them into large water bodies, do you poach endangered species of animals that your children and forth coming generation will only see pictures and hear stories of all these wonderful species of animals. The list is endless. According to Nobel Peace prize winner Arch-Bishop Desmond Tutu, during the global faith rally on the eve of United Nation Framework Convention Climate Change (UNFCCC) negotiation in South Africa last year, he said God created us to live in a garden but we keep destroying the garden. We have only one earth, one world he stressed.
I leave you with this message: if everything is fine in your country, region, remember those in the small island whose lands are been sub-merged as the sea level keep rising because the ice cap in the Arctic region melts, the Horn of Africa were people die out of starvation as the drought continues. Act for the Earth you want to see and bequeath to your children. HAPPY EARTH DAY!
Tuesday, 10 April 2012
The global issue related to women is about been marginalised, under-represented and not having a voice. These have resulted in women always looking out for ways to express themselves and seek relevance. History was made in Africa on the 7th of April 2012, when a woman Joyce Banda became the first female President in Malawi after the death of her President Bingu wa Mutharika who died from cardiac arrest. This cheered women not only in Malawi but in Africa and globally. Liberia President Johnson Sir-leaf told BBC Africa, while reacting to news of another female President in Africa "I will no longer be alone". This portrayed the loneliness the Liberia President felt all this while in office as it has always been a male dominated position with women only dreaming about occupying.
The easy transition to power of President Joyce Banda without violence shows that women are gradually gaining grounds in governance. The slogan that a woman's career ends in the kitchen would soon be a thing of the past. Women in recent times have proved they are equal to the task in providing credible and responsible leadership. It is no longer business as usual because the change we have always dreamt of is here. Women rise up and take your place: excuse is dead, action is alive.