Planet Workshops, Report

17/10/2011

Ramsar Secretary General, Anada Tiéga, and Claudia Fenerol, Coordinator, Partnership Programme, attended the Planet Workshops Conference held in Evian, France, 26 - 28 September, 2011.  The Planet Workshops, an International Forum for Sustainable Development, is an interactive platform dedicated to the exchange ideas, experiences and best practices gathering key decision makers who want to implement a sustainable agenda in business and in society.  Secretary General Tiéga is a member of the Planet Workshops Steering Committee.  Over 900 people attended the Conference from the business and financial sector, civil society, governments and inter-governmental organizations.

The conference focused principally on the upcoming Rio +20 summit, including active discussions on Africa, planning for Rio+20, some emerging issues and what many businesses are doing to integrate sustainable development into their business plans.  HSH Prince Albert of Monaco spoke at the Conference accentuating the importance of key global issues such as biodiversity, water security and climate change.  Elizabeth Thompson, Assistant Secretary General and Executive Coordinator for the Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) spoke at the closing ceremony, describing the importance of the Rio +20 meeting, key global issues and the value of the Rio+ 20 Conference.  Ms. Thompson also placed a framework around the outcome of the Planet Workshops Conference and how the outcome could be used to support the “road to Rio+20 process”.

The Secretariat played an active role in raising awareness in this large and diverse group about the Ramsar Convention and its important role in water security – a key topic continuously raised at the Planet Workshop Conference. With many company CEOs and presidents in attendance, the conference provided a platform for meeting and networking with new potential partners in the business sector, providing the opportunity to discuss the importance of wetlands in the wetland-water nexus, as well as in the context of emerging challenges associated with increasing urbanization, food security, biodiversity, human health, climate change  and demand for energy.

Reported by: Claudia Fenerol, Ramsar Partnership Programme

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