The United Nations World Summit on Sustainable Development was held in Johannesburg, South Africa, from 26 August to 4 September 2002. The Summit is the ten-year follow-up to the UN Conference on the Environment and Development, held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. The purpose of the summit was to review progress since the Rio Earth Summit, and reinvigorate the global commitment to sustainable development through a comprehensive programme of actions. For more information on agreements at Rio see our pages about New Zealand’s Multilateral Environmental Agreements.
The New Zealand Delegation to the World Summit was led by the Prime Minister, Rt Hon Helen Clark, and the Environment Minister, Hon Marian Hobbs, and included officials and representatives of New Zealand society. Issues they addressed include oceans and fisheries, the needs of small Pacific Island states and chemical use.
At the Summit, four core objectives guided the delegation:
In preparation for the Summit the UN Commission on Sustainable Development met four times to negotiate and draft the Summit documents. New Zealand participated in these meetings. Key issues for New Zealand were:
Documents produced by New Zealand in preparation for the World Summit are available in the Reports on sustainable development in New Zealand webpage.
Two Ministry for the Environment staff were members of the New Zealand delegation. They gave their perspective on proceedings in three reports from the World Summit:
Also as part of New Zealand’s preparations, in May 2001 the Minister for the Environment launched the Rio+10 Community Programme. This provided an opportunity for people to give their views on New Zealand’s progress in dealing with environmental issues and priorities for the future. Over the next three months, the Ministry for the Environment received 3588 response forms and 80 written submissions. The findings of the Rio+10 Community Programme were released on 4 October 2001.
For an update on the government’s current work on sustainable development see New Zealand Sustainable Development Programme of Action.
Last updated: 17 September 2007