Province of San Luis, Argentina
- Date submitted: 31 Oct 2011
- Stakeholder type: Major Group
- Name: Province of San Luis, Argentina
- Submission Document: Download
Full SubmissionProvince of San Luis, Argentina RIO+20 Declaration Statement Major Group: Local Authorities 2012 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development The province of San Luis in Argentina considers RIO+20 as a crucial opportunity to reaffirm and renew commitments towards achieving sustainable development, the eradication of poverty and integrating economic, social and environmental pillars. Whilst it is essential that delegates of RIO+20 provide concrete actions and deliverable targets it must be emphasized that the objective should not be to create new goals. Instead we would like to see a focused agreement that assists the implementation of programs needed to turn existing commitments into reality (the Millennium Development Goals and Agenda 21). With this in mind, and from the perspective of a local government, the following proposals must be considered: Recognize that local authorities are often under-resourced, under-financed and hence can lack the necessary skills and capacity to develop sustainably despite having the most potential to provide responsive action that is best suited to their local economic and social circumstances; Recognize the need for a more efficient UN system of reporting and monitoring to remove the administrative and financial burden on local government authorities; Recognize that with satisfactory resources and training local authorities have the potential to implement concrete solutions to combat poverty and abandon unsustainable practices whilst providing effective environmental governance; Recognize that the capabilities of local governments must be strengthened to enable the adoption of responsibility and the delivery of policies; Reaffirm that the green economy is not limited to national policies and/or agendas but instead local authorities have the opportunity to create autonomous regional green economies that provide new jobs, new markets, technological innovation and social empowerment; Encourage the sharing of knowledge, best practices and technological innovation between local authorities through the development of partnerships between industrialized and developing countries, plus, establishing stronger South-South collaboration; Encourage better cross-border cooperation between local authorities in trans-boundary resource management, particularly concerning forest and river basin environments; Emphasize the implementation of long sighted policy-making to ensure a path towards low carbon development and a green economy; Recognize the importance of collaboration between businesses, local governments, and universities in low carbon development; Support formalized local private-public sector partnerships that coordinate, finance, and implement shared initiatives and objectives; Encourage local economic incentives as a mechanism to provide cost-effective investment in green technology and solutions, including energy efficiency and renewable energy; Emphasize the role of local authorities in the effective enforcement and monitoring of toxic chemicals, using a combination of regulatory and voluntary measures including the removal of environmentally harmful Subsidies and the penalization of environmentally contaminating companies; Emphasize the importance of youth education programs as a tool to create opportunities for social entrepreneurship; Recognize environmental education as an interdisciplinary study of scientific and social academic subjects and encourage making it a cross component of school curriculums; Design educational initiatives to develop children as Environmental Natives, recognizing their intuitive physical and cognitive connection towards the environment including their awareness, perception, reasoning, and judgment; Recognize the importance of citizen empowerment in environmental resource management, governance and monitoring; Emphasize the role of Information Communication & Technology as an effective tool to: - Contribute to the monitoring of local resource protection and management; - Provide adequate access to information regarding the rights and responsibilities of natural resource use; - Transfer of inter-generational and inter-group cultural knowledge, values and practices; - Deliver formal and informal citizen education and participation through digital inclusion; - Strengthen community identity, supporting and empowering self-organizing networks; - Foster leadership and active engagement in democratic, political processes; - Encourage South-South local authority collaboration and communication; - Strengthen the mobilization and training of citizens, in particular, youth groups and marginalized communities; Promote the use of information technology as a cost effective solution for the coordination and development of infrastructure initiatives; Ensure City Municipalities prioritize reducing their ecological footprint focusing on waste reduction and recycling, energy efficiency, water preservation, sanitation, sustainable procurement, sustainable consumption and behavior, sustainable planning and design, sustainable public transport, biodiversity conservation, plus, the equal distribution of natural resources; Recognize the essential role of urban authorities in the reduction of poverty, plus, enhancing public health and quality of life; Encourage local, sustainable agricultural production to provide better food security and local rural employment; Recommend that local authorities allocate 2% of the total cost of any publicly funded project towards environmental and social initiatives, and incorporate this method of accounting into their decision making process.