Have your say: Road to Rio Workshop

By Tierney Smith

As the world prepares for Rio+20, RTCC wants you to add your voice to the growing numbers of people calling for real, solid action towards a sustainable future.

This Wednesday students from across London will be joining RTCC to discuss and develop our own ideas of sustainable development and the much debated Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Put forward by the Colombian government, the idea of a set of SDGs gained momentum very quickly as the world readies itself for the Rio+20 Earth Summit in June.

Endorsed by the UN Secretary General and featured heavily in the zero draft outcome document for the conference, it is becoming more likely that the concept of the SDGs will play a central role in Brazil.

In the Colombian proposal for the SDGs they proposed a series of issue ‘clusters’ that the goal could address including atmosphere, climate resilience, land degradation, sustainable agriculture, biotechnology and waste.

However, with the world also preparing for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) coming to an end and with work already underway to develop a post 2015 framework to continue their achievements, there has been much debate over how a new set of goals could be related to the MDGs.

In the build up to Rio+20, RTCC wants to know what students think about the Earth Summit, what it should achieve and how far it could go in setting out these new goals to address both sustainable development and continue to work toward poverty alleviation.

Things to think about:

As part of this event we will be asking the questions:

– How should and could the Sustainable Development Goals relate to the Millennium Development Goals? Should the new goals take over from the MDGs, run in parallel or be a completely separate set of goals?

– How far should Rio+20 go in developing the idea of the Sustainable Development Goals? Should they produce a set of specific targets or develop the pathway to establishing these at a later date?

– What areas should be covered by the goals?

– Should the goals be universal or country specific? The MDGs focused on countries suffering from poverty but many believe the SDGs should focus on global environmental concerns.

What the workshop will do

Helped along by mentors from both the campaign world and the research world, the 20 students at the Road to Rio workshop will address these questions, and come up with their own ideas of what sustainable development could encompass and what the Rio+20 conference should achieve.

The overall objective of the workshop will be to produce a set of Action Points (the beginnings of the Sustainable Development Goals) which they believe Rio+20 should focus on and achieve.

Add your voice

RTCC wants to hear from you too.

What do you think Rio+20 should achieve? Do you love or hate the idea of the Sustainable Development Goals? What do you think sustainable development even means?

Get in touch with RTCC and make your contribution to our Road to Rio workshop.

There are still a very limited number of places available for the workshop. If you want to come along get in touch at [email protected].

Or why not make your own contribution online, leave a comment below, email at [email protected] or get in touch on @RTCCNewswire or on our Facebook page.

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