Day 3 at CSD-18

Blue sky and sunshine were in sharp contrast to very cold aircondition in buildings (and I don’t like airco). Jan-Gustav gave us some interesting numbers at the NGO morning briefing. Apparently only 300, out of 1200 pre-registered, participants are here at the moment. That explains a lot of things, last year we had approximately 800 attending. The reasons for low attendance seems to be a combination of visa problems, funding problems, and this year’s topics. So, no need for secondary passes until next Wednesday when the High Level Segment (i.e. ministers attending) starts. I also felt good realising that yesterday’s women’s briefing actually had 10% of all participants attending! This morning’s briefing was less well attended (well, you can’t expect 10% every day!).

I went to a very interesting lunchtime side event where I felt proud to be Dutch after the presentation of the sustainable transport system used to supply shops and restaurants in the inner city of Utrecht. The Cargohopper system is based on solar-powered electrical cars, using trained young people to drive the vehicles. Two other projects, recycling in a town in Serbia and a school gardening project in Manitoba (Canada), were also very inspiring. It was the first event where I was inspired by the excellent examples. Very strange, considering this is a Review year and it should be full of examples.

Katinka and I then went to an event organised by the Dutch embassy about the involvement of public private partnerships  (the Dutch sustainable trade initiative) in sustainable consumption and production, using the examples of cotton and cocoa (Mars to be precise). Very good presentations, although many aspects are of course not explained in enough detail to stop me from asking a few (critical?) questions.

I’m already starting to loose track of which day it is…..


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