Commissioner for Sustainable Futures of Wales (UK) and Cynnal Cymru
- Date submitted: 1 Nov 2011
- Stakeholder type: Major Group
- Submission Document: Download
- Additional Document:
Rio +20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development.
Zero Draft Submission
This submission is presented by the Commissioner for Sustainable Futures in Wales (United
Kingdom) and Cynnal Cymru, an organisation representing networks and sustainability
practitioners across Wales that works in support of our Commissioner for Sustainable Futures.
Wales has had a legal duty to sustainable development since its regional government was
established in 1999. As a nation, we have promoted sustainable development in all of our work,
and our Welsh Government has made sustainable development its central organising principle.
We recommend that other nations and regions also commit to making sustainable development
their central organising principle, to ensure that sustainable development is at the heart of
everything they do.
The next step for Wales is to introduce legislation to make sustainable development the central
organising principle for all public bodies in Wales. We are learning from the experiences of
countries around the world about how to turn this from a legislative requirement into successful
delivery. We expect that this Sustainable Development Bill will become law by 2014.
In Wales we have a Commissioner for Sustainable Futures, Peter Davies, who is appointed
to provide leadership for sustainable development in Wales (http://www.cynnalcymru.com/
commissioner). Peter provides independent advice to the Welsh Government on sustainable
development, and is able to convene stakeholders from across Wales to drive action on
We recommend that all states and regional governments appoint a Commissioner of their own,
who at a minimum is able to act as a focal point for action on sustainable development across
civil society, and who has the power to convene stakeholders to make sustainable development
their central organising principle. This role of catalysing and encouraging action will be important
in creating support for sustainable development amongst the populations of member states and
We recommend that the United Nations considers developing a global network of
Commissioners for Sustainable Futures, to share good practice and enable action across the
We emphasise that to be successful, Commissioners for Sustainable Futures need to be
genuinely independent of their government but able to speak with authority to government, and
are able to act across all sectors, to see the whole picture of sustainability.
In Wales, the Commissioner for Sustainable Futures is supported by Cynnal Cymru - a network
organisation representing practitioners and stakeholders across Wales with an interest in
sustainable development. This model is effective as it enables the advice and recommendations
of our members, businesses and society to contribute to the advice and evidence the
Commissioner for Sustainable Futures provides to government.
As a membership organisation Cynnal Cymru is the hub for an active community of individuals
and organisations delivering sustainable development across Wales. We recommend that
Commissioners across the world work in partnership with similar organisations in their own
countries to ensure that they develop good relationships with practitioners.
We are keen to share our experiences and the lessons we have learned on sustainability in
Wales with other nations.