Started off, as always, with the information briefing for all NGOs. This meeting, during week 1, is held in a proper meeting room with microphones, and the chair has a beautiful wooden hammer to get everybody’s attention. Unfortunately this nice room is not available to Major Groups during the rest of the day.
So, the Women’s Major Group then tried to meet at 10am near the Vienna cafe, but it was all very confusing and not many people showed up. Clearly this wasn’t working and communication within the group was an issue. Let’s hope this improves over time 🙂
As I wasn’t inspired to attend the sessions on Waste and Chemicals, I went to the BIC office across the road for coffee and then met up with British Baha’i friends at the UN. We did the tourist tour, which I’d never done before. Typical one of those situations where you need visitors to do the things that are under your nose. It was very interesting and I got to parts of the UN building, I hadn’t been before. The visual exhibitions and arts in the many corridors are just stunning.
In the afternoon, I went to the negotiation sessionon the Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP) as this is the topic the Baha’i delegation is focussing its attention on.Let me give some background on how it works.
The draft negotiation text, as presented by the chair at teh start of CSD-19, was 25 pages long. Two working groups are set up who deal with different topics. They start with reading through the text and inviting amendments from all countries. This is what happens:
The original text (just a random paragraph):
58. Together with poverty eradication and protecting natural resource, changing unsustainable consumption and production patterns is one of the three overarching objectives of sustainable development.
is amended into:
58. [Together with poverty [eradication / reduction – Cambodia] and protecting [and managing – Switzerland, Canada] [the / and soundly managing – Cambodia] natural resource[s – Cambodia] [base – delete Cambodia], changing unsustainable consumption and production patterns is one of the three overarching objectives of [and essential requirements for –Switzerland] sustainable development – delete G77].
Welcome to the world of brackets!!!
More on brackets (alternative, contentious, suspicious, tactical/trading, uncertain, waiting, and weary) later.