Jul 1, 2008, 4:38 AM
We know the future we want for all. We want a future where every girl and boy can fulfill their rights and capacities and make a rewarding contribution to society. We want a future where we can live in a healthy setting, with strong bonds to nature and a rich diversity of social relations. For this, we need a flourishing environment. We need to create green economies.
This is our message for the 2012 World Environment Day. This is the flag we will raise at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio.
Rio+20 must redraw the map of development and set new directions for sustainability -- building on new forms of agriculture, new sources and uses of energy, new ways of building and transportation.
Reaching these goals requires new approaches to freshwater and the ocean, to lands and the climate. It calls for new thinking about the meaning of progress. It demands new sources of innovation and resilience that have deeper roots than material or economic assets. We must construct green economies on the foundations of green societies.
The agenda is steep. Education for sustainable development must foster the values and behaviours for a new culture of sustainability. Science, technology and engineering must be mobilized to find innovative answers to complex questions. Culture must be integrated into all development initiatives. The media must help build awareness and inform policy. We must promote social inclusion through integrated policies. Sustainability will only come from working on all of these levels. UNESCO is acting at each of them.
In science, technology, innovation and engineering, UNESCO is encouraging green solutions to the challenges of today and tomorrow.
The Organization is leading the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014) to provide everyone with the tools and skills to make a difference.
We are working to strengthen the interface between science and policy, and actively backing the recently established Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystems Services (IPBES).
Green economies must include everyone. No society, no man or woman can be left behind. We must all protect the planet for the future we want.