Friday, 19 October 2012

Greenwash, Sustainable Development and Saving the Planet: Reasons to be both hugely disappointed and very excited

... Do you think that UNIDO has an important role as a bridge between the UN, governments and the business sector?
The UN is increasingly ignored or written off by many observers, including in the private sector, either because it isn’t responding to the key challenges ahead, or is seen as excessively slow and bureaucratic. While the UN needs to remain sensitive to these critiques, I think it still has a huge and not fully exploited role to play. There is no other global institution with the legitimacy, wealth of expertise and experience of the UN system. This gives it a unique moral and political leadership role. The UN Secretary-General’s Sustainable Energy for All Initiative (which is chaired by UNIDO Director-General, Kandeh Yumkella) and UNIDO’s Green Industry Platform, which was recently launched at the Rio+20 Conference, are pioneering a new level of global issue focus and partnership with industry. Initiatives such as these are essential to drive the transition to a new model of sustainable development and economic growth, which draws on the combined strengths of the public, private and civil society sectors. I am personally a big supporter of UNIDO’s Green Industry Platform, which I think represents a historic opportunity to bring together United Nations bodies with the business community to profile and promote best practices and inspire policy and technology innovations to advance Green Industry. This is our best hope of delivering, not only the continued development and economic growth needed for poverty alleviation and job creation, but also of preserving and restoring the ecosystems on which our collective future depends...

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