Brazil-EU Summit Addresses Sustainable Development and Bioenergy

14 July 2010: The fourth Brazil-EU Summit was held in Brasília, Brazil, on 14 July 2010, and attended by Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy, and European Commission President José Manuel Barroso. The resulting joint statement contains a section titled “Sustainable development, climate change, energy and biodiversity.”

According to the Joint Statement, Brazil and the EU welcome the approval by the UN General Assembly of the Brazilian Government's offer to host a UN high-level Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro in 2012 (also referred to as "Rio+20"). Both parties shared the view that the Conference, including its preparatory process, should deliver ambitious and concrete progress on the themes of green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty reduction, and the institutional framework for sustainable development.

Both parties reiterated their commitment, on the basis of the results of the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference, including the political guidance contained in the Copenhagen Accord, to work together ahead of the 16th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 16) to the UNFCCC, to be held in Cancun, Mexico, in late 2010. They agree the goal should be to obtain, through an inclusive negotiating process within the UN framework, a balanced, comprehensive, ambitious and effective legally binding outcome, based on the Kyoto Protocol and the Bali Action Plan, in order to achieve the ultimate objective of the UNFCCC.

The leaders reaffirm the political commitment by Brazil and the EU to promote the use of renewable energies, including the production and use of sustainable biofuels, highlighting the importance of keeping responsible and non-discriminatory policies on sustainable bioenergy. They pledge to continue to work closely with interested countries on the promotion of sustainable production of biofuels, bioelectricity and other forms of renewable energy at the international level, reiterating their commitment to working together in the context of the International Biofuels Forum and the Global BioEnergy Partnership (GBEP), including the harmonization of technical standards and the discussion of sustainability parameters.

The Summit also provided an opportunity to discuss EU-Brazil cooperation on the sustainable development of bioenergy in interested African countries. The Statement provides that the development of feasibility studies on the potential for the sustainable production and use of bioenergy, taking into account social, environmental and economic consequences, is expected to make an important contribution to tackling climate change, fighting poverty, and promoting access to modern forms of energy. [Joint Declaration]