Rio+20 must promote green growth, says ICC Chairman

  • 2 February 2012
ICC sustainable cities

ICC Chairman Gerard Worms on Tuesday told conference attendees that private sector engagement can help make the upcoming ‘Rio+20’ conference in Brazil a launching ground for widespread global action in support of sustainability and green growth.

“Companies around the world have put sustainability at the forefront of their agenda, recognizing the growing relevance and urgency of global environmental, social and economic challenges,” Mr Worms said during his speech at the French government conference, ‘Towards new global governance on the environment’.

ICC, as the world business organization, has begun to help businesses, large and small, in more than 120 countries address these environmental challenges by integrating them into their business practices.

Green economy, in the context of sustainable development, has been declared a priority theme for the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in 2012 (Rio+20).

“Rio +20 is an opportunity to embed the green economy concept in the broader sustainable development concept,” Mr Worms said. To move forward, it is crucial to green all sectors in all countries, and advance resource efficiency and life cycle approaches.”

Through content generated by its Commission on Environment and Energy and its Task force on Green Economy, ICC has outlined 10 conditions for a transition to a green economy, focusing on innovation, the need for economic growth and innovative collaborations.

Other undertakings by ICC on the road to Rio include a green economy roadmap, featuring case studies and best practices, as well as a series of regional forums to facilitate green growth through trade and investment that demonstrate how open trade and investment frameworks are critical accelerators for green growth.

ICC, in collaboration with Business Action for Sustainable Development 2012 partners, is also mobilized to provide a unified and constructive voice in the official Rio+20 negotiations.

Mr Worms concluded that ICC and the business community clearly recognize the need for greater environmental governance as well as for stronger integration of economic, environmental and social aspects in institutional decision-making and arrangements.

“While governments in the Rio+20 discussions consider an array of options, it is clear that only a greater involvement by the private sector can overcome the multiple and interlocking crises – environmental, social and economic – that the world is facing,” he said.