First UNCSD PrepCom Discusses Substantive and Procedural Issues Related to Rio+20 Event

19 May 2010: The first session of the Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) for the 2012 UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) convened from 17-19 May 2010, at UN Headquarters in New York, US. The Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) took up both substantive and procedural matters.

The 2012 UNCSD (also refered to as Rio+20) will take place in Brazil 20 years after the 1992 UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) met in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. On the substantive side, delegates assessed progress to date and the remaining gaps in implementing outcomes of major summits on sustainable development. They also discussed new and emerging challenges, a green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication, and the institutional framework for sustainable development. Delegates noted that the world is facing unprecedented multi-faceted crises, including climate change, food insecurity, financial and economic uncertainty, unemployment, unsustainable consumption patterns, and biodiversity loss, among others.

On the procedural side, participants met in contact groups to organize their work in the lead up to 2012, and to consider the UNCSD's rules of procedure.  Among other issues discussed, delegates agreed that the Bureau should organize, within existing resources, “open-ended informal intersessional meetings of not more than six days” in total. The aim of these meetings is to hold “focused substantive discussions to advance the subject matter of the Conference.” [IISD RS Coverage] [UNGA Press Release]