The Rio 2012 summit on sustainable development is now one year away. Over two decades since the 1992 ‘Earth Summit’, sustainable development has not materialized: as global GDP has risen, so have greenhouse gas emissions, species loss and environmental degradation.

This failure is due to political reasons. Publics around the world remain focused on material standards of living; leaders are reluctant to expend political capital on long-term, global risk issues; multilateral ‘bandwidth’ remains low; in many cases it is unclear what solutions would look like.

Jun 01, 2011
Alex Evans, David Steven
United Nations

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