Ghana Environment Ministry, United Nations Call For Swift Rio+20 Follow-up

UNITED NATION? As ministries, department, and agencies (MDAs), heads of UN agencies, development partners, and media representatives gather for an important meeting in Accra, Hon.Sherry Ayittey, Minister of Environment, Science and Technology (MEST) called for the full implementation of the United Nations Conference for Sustainable Development (Rio+20), held in Rio de Janeiro last June.Speaking at a briefing on Rio+20 outcomes at Alisa Hotel, North Ridge, Accra, on 27 September 2012, Hon. Ayittey said MEST will work with all stakeholders to mainstream the outcomes of the Rio+20 conference into sector plans and programmes.

Discussing the Ministry efforts to advance the discussion on green economy, she mentioned that, ?the definition, scope, and prioritization of green sectors must be inextricably linked to the means of implementation.?

?The Future We Want,? which is the Outcome Document of Rio+20, addressed the two conference themes ? a green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication, and institutional framework for sustainable development ? along with other wider development objectives. It was adopted by consensus by all countries in the United Nations, including Ghana.

?For the United Nations, ?the Future We Want? is an affirmation of the centrality of sustainable development, said UN Resident Coordinator Ruby Sandhu-Rojon. ?For Ghana, this is particularly relevant as we grapple with increasing inequality amidst economic growth. It is a powerful reminder that for growth to be sustainable, it must also be equitable. Hence, in our pursuit for economic growth, equal attention must be paid to social equity and environmental pillars,? she continued.

The UN Resident Coordinator also urged the participants to launch a swift and well-coordinated implementation of follow up actions at the national level. To that end, she added, ?the United Nations will continue to work closely with government, civil society, and other development actors to mobilize what is required to achieve sustainable development in Ghana.?

MEST convened the post Rio+20 briefing with UN support to discuss the outcomes of Rio+20 and their implications for Ghana. It also charted the way forward on the efforts to craft a green economy strategy for Ghana. Hon. Ayittey said, ?I urge all MDAs and development partners to work in concert to develop a roadmap for taking into account the feasibility of using the green economy as a tool for sustainable development.?

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