Rio+20 une transition maintenant ! Rio+20: transition now !


In the current period of crisis, the upcoming Rio+20 Summit could provide the opportunity to reconsider development at global level and include economic, social, environmental and legal regulation. The Collectif RIO+20 aims to make the Summit the starting point for a transition based on proposals to this effect.


Everyone is talking about the crisis. The financial markets rule. Employment is increasingly threatened, and redundancies justified. Education and social services are considered of secondary importance. The basis of the current global financial instability began in the 1970s. The model is falling apart, just like in 1929, and all we can do is observe the physical, human and social limits of a system that has proven unable to provide prosperity; a system that has increased inequalities, and that ignores ecological constraints and social, health and environmental impacts.


Crisis exit strategies and new development paths


The symptoms of the world are good indicators of the social, ecological and democratic ailments that conflict with the increasingly intertwined and uncontrolled sectors of the economy and finance. The predicted global population increase of 2 billion people in the next thirty years, and the considerable pressure of the emerging countries to achieve the same level of prosperity as other developed nations of the world, make an optimal exit strategy all the more essential. This underlines the extreme importance of seeking new paths of development that are both just and sustainable in the way they meet people’s needs in terms of the provision of social services, food, energy and sanitation for all.


We need to raise awareness at global level. The Earth Summits organised under the auspices of the United Nations every ten years, even though they have failed to produce genuine political decisions, have enabled the emergence of new issues. We now require international political commitment to confront the interdependence of the crises and reverse the course of events. As of 13th June 2012 in Rio, civil society will be mobilising around the UN conference.


The Collectif Rio+20, created in 2010, brings together NGOs (involved in the field of international solidarity and environment), feminism movements, trade unions, social and solidarity economy organisations, and think tanks that jointly work to support a broader reflection and to prepare proposals.


The aim of the Collectif RIO+20 is to put forward a social project that makes sense. At national level we believe that the answer lies in an exit strategy that reduces inequality rather than cutting budgets for social services, or increasing the precariousness of the vulnerable.


Transition supported by an original quadruple regulation


Rather than carrying on with business as usual until we reach the point of no return, we consider the current period as a unique phase in our history, in which the areas that underpin our society and their thought systems are no longer adapted to the challenges we are facing. This implies introducing four new regulations: economic and financial regulation; the creation of an international framework for social protection, and an end to social dumping ; ecological regulation to fight climate change and the erosion of biodiversity; and legal regulation that involves adopting a Charter of Universal Responsibilities to complement the International Declaration of Human Rights and the UN Charter, and that would provide a framework of international law that creates responsibility for impacts of policy and acts, and that guarantees effective universal rights. Rio+20 would provide a starting point for this transition at both global and local level, emphasizing access to fundamental rights and global democratic governance.


One illustration of the need for the four areas of regulation is the case of unemployment that is affecting an increasing number of people. The concept of work based on the production of goods and services needs to evolve to meet the needs of human development and collective organisation. The transition to a low-carbon society can create both new industries and services that are ecologically and socially responsible, and that provide decent work and professional social security for all. We need to introduce major change that focuses on the general interest of all human beings, at all levels of society, and that implements solid democracy in all spheres.


The Collectif Rio+20 has submitted a contribution to the UN that reaffirms our expectations, our principles and the means of implementation. Our ambition for all human beings is to achieve a transition that will reach beyond 2012. Civil society is mobilising for a change of civilisation that is linked to collective responsible management of our planet. This requires building a new form of global governance based on the cornerstones of the four regulations mentioned above. Let the transition of our society start now!


Collectif RIO+20


4D, AAEOG, Agrisud, AGTER, APE, Aitec-Ipam, Artisans du Monde, ATTAC, CCFD-Terre solidaire, Centre de Recherche en Sustainability Science de Reims, CFDT, CGT, Cohérence Rio+20, Comité 21, CRID, ENERGIES 2050, Entreprendre Vert, Fondation Charles leopold Mayer, France Libertés, FNE, FSU, GRET, Genre et développement soutenable, HELIO-International, IGAPURA, IDD, Ligue de l’Enseignement, Monde pluriel, Mouvement Jeunes Femmes, OREE, P’actes Européens, Les Petits Débrouillards, RAC-France, RARE, REFEDD, Réseau Ecole et Nature, Réseau environnement et santé, Réseau Féministe Ruptures, SECAFI, Secours Catholique, Syndex, Synergence, WWF, VECAM, VivAgora.



Published on 14th February 2012 on Mediapart.