Heads of UNEP and UNITAR discussed the future of sustainable development at the Ethos conference and in the run-up to Rio+20
13 June 2012, Sao Paolo, Brazil - Executive Directors of United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and UNITAR, Achim Steiner and Carlos Lopes, joined Brazilian Minister Gilberto Carvalho, the father of ecodevelopment Professor Ignacy Sachs, and the leadership of the Ethos Institute Jorge Abrahão and Paulo Itacarambi on the occasion of the panel discussion of the international conference of this global CSR driver comprising 1300 Brazilian companies. The Ethos Conference 2012, held on 11-13 June at the Hotel Transamerica in São Paulo, focused on the following theme “Business and the New Economy: what changes with Rio +20?”.
On the occasion on the panel entitled "Stockholm+40 and proposals for Rio+20", Achim Steiner stressed the importance of collaboration and ongoing discussion in the Anthropocene period, as well as that of personal commitment and self-consciousness given the growing realization of the key role of individuals – and not only those of the State or business. Discussants concurred in that the current generation was growing up thinking about sustainable development. Carlos Lopes noted that we should assume the responsibility for what will leave to future generations. "In 20 years, Africa’s population is expected to double. Depending on our attitudes, it can become a bomb or an opportunity. “
When closing the conference, Gilberto Carvalho, Chief Minister of the General Secretariat of the Presidency, stressed the importance of the context in which Rio +20 takes place, and more specifically, the existing level of ambition, and the courage to develop more radical proposals, breaking away from the current models. More specifically, he noted that the fabric of Brazilian society was a flowery field of initiatives and that had an obligation to take advantage of that for strengthening mobilization.
The Conference organized just a week before the Rio+20 Summit hosted discussions mediated by experts and workshops on key issues to be handled and decisions to be taken at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. Over the 3 days of sessions, it brought together close to 1,100 participants coming from the world of business, NGOs, and sustainable development experts.
For each topic discussed during the Ethos Conference, three proposals were prepared envisaging the construction of a new sustainable economic model. The proposals will be forwarded to the Brazilian government and taken to the Conference Rio +20 and the United Nations (UN) by the Ethos Institute and by partner entities.
Photo (from left to right): Paulo Itacarambi, Jorge Abrahão, Ignacy Sachs, Gilberto Carvalho, Carlos Lopes and Achim Steiner