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WWF: Rio+20 Negotiating Text is colossal failure of leadership and vision

Posted on June, 19 2012

Despite a late night negotiating session, the revised text is a colossal failure of leadership and vision from diplomats.
WWF Director General Jim Leape today issued the following statement on the negotiating text released this morning by Brazil:
“Despite a late night negotiating session, the revised text is a colossal failure of leadership and vision from diplomats. They should be embarrassed at their inability to find common ground on such a crucial issue.  
“Now it’s up to world leaders to get serious about sustainable development and save this process. If they approve what’s on the table now without significant changes, they’ve doomed Rio+20 to ridicule.
“While some weak words have been removed, diplomats have swapped them with toothless language. This includes tongue twisters like ‘commit to the progressive realization’ and several promises to ‘recognize’ problems and solutions.
“They’ve added some positive actions around oceans protection. But, the text has lots of words that ‘commit’ parties to nothing – such as ‘commit to promote’ and ‘commit to systematically consider.’”
“Two years and one late night of negotiations later, diplomats in Rio are letting the world down.
 “We’re hoping that doesn’t happen for all the hard work that’s been leading up to this moment, and more importantly for the health of the people and the planet.
“World leaders ‘recognized’ problems 20 years ago, and they’ve done little about them since. How long are we going to accept ‘we’ll look into it’ as a solution?”
Details on this morning’s WWF action:

Earlier this morning world leaders, Heads of State and government negotiators attending Rio+20 were greeted on their way into the Summit by a large "Get SeRIOus+20" and "#LevemaSéRIO+20" banner hung from a giant hot air balloon, belonging to WWF, positioned beside the main route into the Summit.
Free, print quality images of the WWF banner and balloon are available for download from:

For more information contact:

Caroline Behringer
P: +55-21-8257-8852, (Rio - local)
P: +1-202-344-0852 (Rio - int'l)
@CaroBehr, @WWFnews

Leaders must get seRIOus at Rio+20.
Aerial view of flooded forest during rainy season with floating plants, Rio Negro Forest Reserve, Amazonas, Brazil
© Michel Roggo / WWF