By Alan Mercer
The Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development is taking place June 20-22, 2012 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Rio+20 is the latest escalation of Agenda 21, which came out of the 1992 Earth Summit, also called the UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED).
Agenda 21 is a collectivist and authoritarian system that has already been interfering with freedom and property rights for 20 years.
The global power grab of Agenda 21 “sustainable development”, in the name of protecting the environment, establishes large-scale planning in order to prevent individuals from exercising independent control over their own property and lives. As well, it threatens to obliterate prosperity by attacking our standard of living directly. This global level of governance also interferes with national sovereignty and local decision-making. Furthermore it contradicts democratic principles and common assumptions about Canada’s political system.
Agenda 21 is 40 chapters long, and is basically a massive zoning, resource planning, global data collection and planetary surveillance treaty that covers all aspects of the natural and human world, from “human settlement” planning, to forests, oceans, “genetic resources” and “human resources”. It advocates mass transit, “strengthening management” of urban areas, and many other actions.
It represents rule by private lobbyists, foundations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in league with governments. This tax-subsidized public-private partnership permeates all levels of government and society in Canada, federally, provincially and locally. UN-affiliated organizations operate locally (with names like “sustainable” and “stewardship” etc.) to implement sustainable development policies through active and coordinated involvement in municipal planning.
Provincial implementation of Agenda 21 has consisted of various policies and legislation. An example of this in many U.S. states and Canadian provinces such as Ontario and B.C. is Smart Growth. Smart Growth includes the concepts of transportation corridors and compact communities, where planning shifts populations into more densely populated areas. It also shifts people out of their automobiles and into public transit.
There are many points in the preliminary Rio+20 Zero draft of the outcome document that are dangerous to the freedom, rights and prosperity of every Canadian. The zero draft document calls for the strengthening of “international environmental governance”. It also advocates the use of public education to indoctrinate the young and the rest of society in sustainable development values which are elevated above human-centered rights and freedoms. To justify itself, the document includes fear-mongering about potential threats, based on supposedly “scientific” assertions which ignore contrary evidence. Another proposal is a requirement for large businesses to report “sustainability information”.
The draft document hides its authoritarianism behind rhetoric about the environment and also about “poverty eradication”, which is ironic since all of these policies will lead to more poverty. It is talking about a change in our whole way of life. The zero draft document advocates moving the world towards “low-carbon development” and towards “sustainable consumption and production patterns”. On top of all that it talks about the continued redistribution of wealth from countries like Canada to supposedly assist poorer countries in implementing the green economy and sustainable development. Seriously, it also talks about adding a new “measure of well-being” instead of relying on GDP to measure prosperity. This Orwellian device appears intended to make poverty more palatable.
Another important document to watch at Rio+20 is the Draft International Covenant on Environment and Development (DICED).
The International Institute for Sustainable Development provides coverage in its Earth Negotiations Bulletin of more recent negotiations about a newer draft document (Vol. 27, Num. 35). One proposal that stands out is the empowering of governments with the crazy “goal of limiting temperature rise to 2°C”. Also we learn about calls for the developed world to “undertake significant lifestyle changes” and complaints about “unsustainable patterns of consumption”. Another proposal involves “making prices reflect true environmental and social costs and benefits (including payments for ecosystem services, carbon pricing and phasing out harmful subsidies).” The article also reports that proposals about “population limits” have been openly discussed at the preparatory meetings.
In addition to direct threats to our freedoms, property rights and prosperity, there are serious questions we could raise about the legitimacy of Agenda 21 and Rio+20 in terms of Canada’s political system:
Agenda 21 includes the fictional device of so-called “major groups” (arbitrary categories in society) being represented in discussions rather than equal democratic representation by individuals (one person one vote).
Agenda 21 has been implemented over the years without public awareness and involvement, with hardly any media or government explanation other than one-sided propaganda.
Agenda 21 is carried out – unequally – by very active professional non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that also receive tax funding, whereas most individual members of the public – one person one vote – are not actively involved (unfortunately) except as workers who pay taxes to fund NGO and government salaries.
Agenda 21 and Rio+20 are not mentioned in the Conservative platform for the 2011 election (new link) (new link), so there is no democratic justification for signing Rio+20. Unfortunately, the platform lists policies on “greenhouse gas” reduction, and the same government also passed the 2008 Federal Sustainable Development Act which includes the rights-subverting “precautionary principle”. This illustrates that all major political parties are involved in sustainable development / Agenda 21. It’s just that they and the media don’t mention Agenda 21, which subverts the democratic process and public awareness of what is happening.
Please note also that the Canadian Constitution does not mention United Nations treaties as a part of Canada’s system of governance.
For these reasons, Agenda 21 and Rio+20 are clearly undemocratic and threaten the sovereignty of Canadians, our prosperity and way of life, as well as our property rights and freedoms.
And that is why Rio+20 documents should not be signed by the Canadian government.
The Conservative Party claims to support property rights, and yet if it goes along with Rio+20, it fails to protect the rights, freedoms and future of most Canadians.
The people of Canada who believe in freedom – regardless of political stripe – need to make it clear to federal politicians of all parties, as well as provincial and local politicians, that Canada should not be involved in Agenda 21. The government should not have any representatives at Rio+20, they should not sign any documents, and they should withdraw from the original Agenda 21 treaty.
References and further reading on Agenda 21 and Rio+20
1) Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, http://www.uncsd2012.org/rio20/index.html
2) Agenda 21
3) The Future We Want – Zero draft of the outcome document, http://www.uncsd2012.org/rio20/index.php?menu=144
4) iisd Reporting Services, Earth Negotiations Bulletin, Volume 27 Number 35 – Monday, 7 May 2012: Summary of the UNCSD Informal Informal Consultations 23 April – 4 May 2012
Summary of the history of UN environment conferences, important documents, as well as current negotiations leading up to Rio+20:
International Institute for Sustainable Development
5) Draft International Covenant on Environment and Development (DICED)
6) UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs Division for Sustainable Development: Core publications, including Brundtland Report: Our Common Future
7) United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED or the Earth Summit), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 1992 – Documents:
8.) The Rio Declaration on Environment and Development (“Rio Principles”)
9) Health Canada: Sustainable Development defined
10) Federal Sustainable Development Act, 2008
11) Conservative Party of Canada Election Platform, 2011
Conservative Party of Canada Policy Declaration, 2011
12) Thomas Mulcair, NDP, Leader of the Official Opposition
May 17, 2012 – Under heavy fire, Mulcair defends ‘polluter pay’ stand on oil sands
“We know what we want: It is sustainable development to protect future generations…
It’s how we’re allowing the resource to be developed, without applying basic rules of sustainable development, without applying the one rule of sustainable development, which is polluter pay.”
13) Consolidation of Constitution Acts, 1867 to 1982
14) Smart Growth Examples
Ontario Places to Grow
Smart Growth BC
“ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is an association of over 1220 local government Members who are committed to sustainable development. Our Members come from 70 different countries and represent more than 569,885,000 people.
ICLEI is an international association of local governments as well as national and regional local government organizations who have made a commitment to sustainable development.
ICLEI provides technical consulting, training, and information services to build capacity, share knowledge, and support local government in the implementation of sustainable development at the local level. Our basic premise is that locally designed initiatives can provide an effective and cost-efficient way to achieve local, national, and global sustainability objectives.”
16) Search Sustainable or Sustainability or Stewardship etc. + your county or municipality
17) Federation of Canadian Municipalities – Green Municipal Fund
18) Canada’s Rural Partnership
19) Ontario Trillium Foundation
20) Related: Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)
21) Related to Earth Summit and Agenda 21: NGO treaty (not ratified): The Earth Charter
History of the Earth Charter:
“…In the closing statement of the Earth Summit, Secretary General Maurice F. Strong said, “We have a profoundly important Declaration, but it must continue to evolve towards what many of us hope will be an Earth Charter that could be finally sanctioned on the fiftieth anniversary of the United Nations in 1995.”
“In April 1994, the idea was then taken up by Strong, Chairman of the Earth Council, and Mikhail Gorbachev, President of Green Cross International, when a new Earth Charter initiative was launched with support from Queen Beatrix, Prime Minister Ruud Lubbers, and the government of The Netherlands….”
Maurice F. Strong: See Current Chronological List of Members of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada:
22) Calls for global government at Rio+20:
“The authors called for a “constitutional moment” at the upcoming 2012 U.N. Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio in June to reform world politics and government.”
23) The First Global Revolution: A Report by the Council of the Club of Rome (1991), by Alexander King and Bertrand Schneider, p. 115:
“In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like would fit the bill. In their totality and in their interactions these phenomena do constitute a common threat which demands the solidarity of all peoples. But in designating them as the enemy, we fall into the trap about which we have already warned, namely mistaking symptoms for causes. All these dangers are caused by human intervention [really?] and it is only through changed attitudes and behaviour that they can be overcome. The real enemy, then, is humanity itself.”
24) Sites that present evidence contradicting the human-caused climate change dogma:
25) Example of opposition to Agenda 21 in the United States: http://www.freedomadvocates.org/
Globalism vs. America by Michael Shaw
26) Agenda 21 Awareness is Taking Hold in Canada as well as the USA
Mike Opelka explains Agenda 21 to Sun News, including communitarianism.
27) More examples of opposition to Agenda 21:
A Not so Brave New World
“We certainly don’t want them strolling about the entire countryside…”
DICED is UN’s Environmental Constitution for the World:
Dr. Ileana Johnson Paugh (http://romanianconservative.blogspot.com/ ) has written extensively about Agenda 21 Sustainable Development/ Smart Growth. This topic is her passion because she lived under Communism.
Maurice Strong shills for Rio +20 from Canadian newspaper boardrooms