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Monday, April 07, 2003

The United Nations is currently facing a number of unprecedented challenges + many are asking whether it is up to the job...

The UN system is certainly mind-bogglingly complex + no doubt guilty of retaining plenty of dead wood...

Despite these failings Earth-Info.Net feels that the following UN programmes do exceptionally good work + are well worth supporting:

* UN Development Programme
* World Health Organisation

* UN Environment Programme
* World Conservation Union (IUCN)
* Post Conflict Assessment Unit

Emergency + Long-term
* UNHCR (refugees)
* UNICEF (children)
* World Food Programme

See Charter 99 to find out about demands for greater accountability + transparency in global decision-making and this fine set of useful links from the One World Trust for plenty of other constructive ideas...

The Bretton Woods Project site also offers numerous sensible suggestions for World Bank + World Trade Organisation reform....

Then there's the idea of a "Tobin Tax" on cross-border currency transactions as a way of generating a reliable revenue that could go to global priorities such basic environmental + human needs.

Funding arrangements such as the Tobin Tax are needed because over 32 years ago the UK and other governments agreed to spend 0.7% of their national wealth on overseas aid - so far only 5 countries who promised to reach the 0.7% UN target have done so.

Many new promises have been made in the mean time and Earth-Info.Net would therefore like to see a concerted effort to make the world a genuinely healthier, better educated, peaceful + safe place for more of it's people.

One way to achieve this would be to invest in the bits of the UN that are efficient + effective...