Greening the Economy with Agriculture - Food and Agriculture


The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), through Resolution 64/236 of 24 December 2009, decided to organize the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, Rio de Janeiro, 3 to 6 June 2012 (UNCSD, also referred to as Rio+20).

The two main stated themes decided by the UNGA for UNCSD are: a green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication; and the institutional framework for sustainable development.

The preparatory process foresees three sessions of the preparatory Committee and three inter-sessional meetings.

The Second Preparatory Committee of UNCSD, held in March 2011, has invited “Member States, the relevant United Nations system organizations, and relevant stakeholders to provide their inputs and contributions in writing by 1 November 2011 for inclusion in a compilation document to serve as basis for the preparation of the zero-draft of the outcome document”.

Since May 2010, FAO’s active contribution to the preparatory process of UNCSD has resulted in the inclusion of food security among the priority areas under consideration. FAO is particularly contributing to shaping the green economy agenda of UNCSD by providing elements pertaining to its mandate.

To this end, an analysis has been carried out on the interactions between the green economy and the food and agriculture sector, including opportunities and constraints.

The Greening the Economy with Agriculture (GEA) Initiative seeks to contribute to the definition and implementation of the green economy, with a particular emphasis on food security. As part of this initiative, FAO organized broad stakeholder consultations through an FAO/UNCTAD/Biovision side event in New York on 8 March 2011, and a joint FAO/OECD Expert Meeting on Greening the Economy with Agriculture in Paris, France, 5 to 7 September 2011.

An informal seminar was held with Permanent Representatives to FAO on 4 November 2011 to brief them on progress made thus far.

GEA aims to promote a dialogue between the agriculture, forestry and fisheries constituencies and other partners, on sustainable development strategies, as well as the overall participation of food and agriculture stakeholders into the Rio+20 process and beyond, with a view to facilitating their access to the resources and institutional arrangements that will be put in place in order to effectively move towards sustainable development.

By taking a proactive role in international, regional and national debates for Rio+20 and beyond, the GEA Initiative would create bridges among different types of stakeholders and between constituencies, notably between agriculture and the environment, while strengthening the overall resilience of countries to exogenous shocks, either macroeconomic or ecological.  

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