United Nations Conference on Environment & DevelopmentRio de Janerio, Brazil, 3 to 14 June 1992AGENDA 21CONTENTSChapter1. PreambleParagraphs1.1 - 1.6SECTION I. SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC DIMENSIONS2. International cooperation to accelerate sustainable development in developing countries and relateddomestic policies3. Combating poverty4. Changing consumption patterns5. Demographic dynamics and sustainability6. Protecting and promoting human health conditions7. Promoting sustainable human settlement development8. Integrating environment and development in decision-making2.1 - 2.433.1 - 3.124.1 - 4.275.1 - 5.666.1 - 6.467.1 - 7.808.1 - 8.54SECTION II. CONSERVATION AND MANAGEMENT OF RESOURCES FOR DEVELOPMENT9. Protection of the atmosphere10. Integrated approach to the planning and management of land resources11. Combating deforestation12. Managing fragile ecosystems: combating desertification and drought13. Managing fragile ecosystems: sustainable mountain development14. Promoting sustainable agriculture and rural development15. Conservation of biological diversity16. Environmentally sound management of biotechnology17. Protection of the oceans, all kinds of seas, including enclosed and semi-enclosed seas, and coastalareas and the protection, rational use and development of their living resources18. Protection of the quality and supply of freshwater resources: application of integrated approaches tothe development, management and use of water resources19. Environmentally sound management of toxic chemicals, including prevention of illegal internationaltraffic in toxic and dangerous products20. Environmentally sound management of hazardous wastes, in hazardous wastes21. Environmentally sound management of solid wastes and sewage-related issues22. Safe and environmentally sound management of radioactive wastes9.1 - 9.3510.1 - 10.1811.1 - 11.4012.1 - 12.6313.1 - 13.2414.1 - 14.10415.1 - 15.1116.1 - 16.4617.1 - 17.13618.1 - 18.9019.1 - 19.7620.1 - 20.4621.1 - 21.4922.1 - 22.9SECTION III. STRENGTHENING THE ROLE OF MAJOR GROUPS23. Preamble24. Global action for women towards sustainable and equitable development25. Children and youth in sustainable development26. Recognizing and strengthening the role of indigenous people and their communities27. Strengthening the role of non-governmental organizations: partners for sustainable development28. Local authorities' initiatives in support of Agenda 2129. Strengthening the role of workers and their trade unions30. Strengthening the role of business and industry31. Scientific and technological community23.1 - 23.424.1 - 24.1225.1 - 25.1726.1 - 26.927.1 - 27.1328.1 - 28.729.1 - 29.1430.1 - 30.3031.1 - 31.12
32. Strengthening the role of farmers32.1 - 32.14SECTION IV. MEANS OF IMPLEMENTATION33. Financial resources and mechanisms34. Transfer of environmentally sound technology, cooperation and capacity-building35. Science for sustainable development36. Promoting education, public awareness and training37. National mechanisms and international cooperation for capacity-building in developing countries38. International institutional arrangements39. International legal instruments and mechanisms40. Information for decision-making33.1 - 33.2134.1 - 34.2935.1 - 35.2536.1 - 36.2737.1 - 37.1338.1 - 38.4539.1 - 39.1040.1 - 40.30****** Copyright United Nations Division for Sustainable Development* For section I (Social and economic dimensions), see A/CONF.151/26 (Vol. I); for section III (Strengtheningthe role of major groups) and section IV (Means of implementation), see A.CONF/151/26 (Vol. III).* For section II (Conservation and management of resources for development), see A/CONF.151/26 (Vol. II);for section III (Strengthening the role of major groups) and section IV (Means of implementation), seeA/CONF.151/26 (Vol. III).* For section I (Social and economic dimensions), see A/CONF.151/26 (Vol. I); for section II (Conservationand management of resources for development), see A/CONF.151/26 (Vol. II).Small Island Developing States Network (SIDSnet) has formatted this document for MS-Word from the original version availablefor downloading from the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) at:http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/agenda21.htm. Reproduction and dissemination of the document - in electronic and/orprinted format - is encouraged, provided acknowledgement is made of the role of the United Nations in making it available.
Agenda 21 - Chapter 1PREAMBLE1.1. Humanity stands at a defining moment in history. We are confronted with a perpetuation of disparitiesbetween and within nations, a worsening of poverty, hunger, ill health and illiteracy, and thecontinuing deterioration of the ecosystems on which we depend for our well-being. However,integration of environment and development concerns and greater attention to them will lead to thefulfilment of basic needs, improved living standards for all, better protected and managed ecosystemsand a safer, more prosperous future. No nation can achieve this on its own; but together we can - in aglobal partnership for sustainable development.1.2. This global partnership must build on the premises of General Assembly resolution 44/228 of 22December 1989, which was adopted when the nations of the world called for the United NationsConference on Environment and Development, and on the acceptance of the need to take a balancedand integrated approach to environment and development questions.1.3. Agenda 21 addresses the pressing problems of today and also aims at preparing the world for thechallenges of the next century. It reflects a global consensus and political commitment at the highestlevel on development and environment cooperation. Its successful implementation is first and foremostthe responsibility of Governments. National strategies, plans, policies and processes are crucial inachieving this. International cooperation should support and supplement such national efforts. In thiscontext, the United Nations system has a key role to play. Other international, regional and subregionalorganizations are also called upon to contribute to this effort. The broadest public participation and theactive involvement of the non-governmental organizations and other groups should also beencouraged.1.4. The developmental and environmental objectives of Agenda 21 will require a substantial flow of newand additional financial resources to developing countries, in order to cover the incremental costs forthe actions they have to undertake to deal with global environmental problems and to acceleratesustainable development. Financial resources are also required for strengthening the capacity ofinternational institutions for the implementation of Agenda 21. An indicative order-of-magnitudeassessment of costs is included in each of the programme areas. This assessment will need to beexamined and refined by the relevant implementing agencies and organizations.1.5. In the implementation of the relevant programme areas identified in Agenda 21, special attentionshould be given to the particular circumstances facing the economies in transition. It must also berecognized that these countries are facing unprecedented challenges in transforming their economies,in some cases in the midst of considerable social and political tension.1.6. The programme areas that constitute Agenda 21 are described in terms of the basis for action,objectives, activities and means of implementation. Agenda 21 is a dynamic programme. It will becarried out by the various actors according to the different situations, capacities and priorities ofcountries and regions in full respect of all the principles contained in the Rio Declaration onEnvironment and Development. It could evolve over time in the light of changing needs andcircumstances. This process marks the beginning of a new global partnership for sustainabledevelopment.****** When the term "Governments" is used, it will be deemed to include the European Economic Community within itsareas of competence. Throughout Agenda 21 the term "environmentally sound" means "environmentally safe andsound", in particular when applied to the terms "energy sources", "energy supplies", "energy systems" and "technology"or "technologies".
Agenda 21 - Chapter 2INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION TO ACCELERATE SUSTAINABLEDEVELOPMENT IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES AND RELATED DOMESTICPOLICIES2.1. In order to meet the challenges of environment and development, States have decided to establish anew global partnership. This partnership commits all States to engage in a continuous and constructivedialogue, inspired by the need to achieve a more efficient and equitable world economy, keeping inview the increasing interdependence of the community of nations and that sustainable developmentshould become a priority item on the agenda of the international community. It is recognized that, forthe success of this new partnership, it is important to overcome confrontation and to foster a climate ofgenuine cooperation and solidarity. It is equally important to strengthen national and internationalpolicies and multinational cooperation to adapt to the new realities.2.2. Economic policies of individual countries and international economic relations both have greatrelevance to sustainable development. The reactivation and acceleration of development requires botha dynamic and a supportive international economic environment and determined policies at thenational level. It will be frustrated in the absence of either of these requirements. A supportive externaleconomic environment is crucial. The development process will not gather momentum if the globaleconomy lacks dynamism and stability and is beset with uncertainties. Neither will it gathermomentum if the developing countries are weighted down by external indebtedness, if developmentfinance is inadequate, if barriers restrict access to markets and if commodity prices and the terms oftrade of developing countries remain depressed. The record of the 1980s was essentially negative oneach of these counts and needs to be reversed. The policies and measures needed to create aninternational environment that is strongly supportive of national development efforts are thus vital.International cooperation in this area should be designed to complement and support - not to diminishor subsume - sound domestic economic policies, in both developed and developing countries, if globalprogress towards sustainable development is to be achieved.2.3. The international economy should provide a supportive international climate for achievingenvironment and development goals by:PROGRAMME AREASA. Promoting sustainable development through trade Basis for action2.5. An open, equitable, secure, non-discriminatory and predictable multilateral trading system that isconsistent with the goals of sustainable development and leads to the optimal distribution of globalproduction in accordance with comparative advantage is of benefit to all trading partners. Moreover,improved market access for developing countries' exports in conjunction with sound macroeconomicand environmental policies would have a positive environmental impact and therefore make animportant contribution towards sustainable development.2.6. Experience has shown that sustainable development requires a commitment to sound economicpolicies and management, an effective and predictable public administration, the integration ofenvironmental concerns into decision-making and progress towards democratic government, in thelight of country-specific conditions, which allows for full participation of all parties concerned. Theseattributes are essential for the fulfilment of the policy directions and objectives listed below.2.7. The commodity sector dominates the economies of many developing countries in terms of production,employment and export earnings. An important feature of the world commodity economy in the 1980swas the prevalence of very low and declining real prices for most commodities in international marketsand a resulting substantial contraction in commodity export earnings for many producing countries.The ability of those countries to mobilize, through international trade, the resources needed to financeinvestments required for sustainable development may be impaired by this development and by tariff
and non-tariff impediments, including tariff escalation, limiting their access to export markets. Theremoval of existing distortions in international trade is essential. In particular, the achievement of thisobjective requires that there be substantial and progressive reduction in the support and protection ofagriculture - covering internal regimes, market access and export subsidies - as well as of industry andother sectors, in order to avoid inflicting large losses on the more efficient producers, especially indeveloping countries. Thus, in agriculture, industry and other sectors, there is scope for initiativesaimed at trade liberalization and at policies to make production more responsive to environment anddevelopment needs. Trade liberalization should therefore be pursued on a global basis across economicsectors so as to contribute to sustainable develop ment.2.8. The international trading environment has been affected by a number of developments that havecreated new challenges and opportunities and have made multilateral economic cooperation of evengreater importance. World trade has continued to grow faster than world output in recent years.However, the expansion of world trade has been unevenly spread, and only a limited number ofdeveloping countries have been capable of achieving appreciable growth in their exports. Protectionistpressures and unilateral policy actions continue to endanger the functioning of an open multilateraltrading system, affecting particularly the export interests of developing countries. Economicintegration processes have intensified in recent years and should impart dynamism to glob