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Sunday, February 15, 2004

Commission on Sustainable Development's programme of work...
At its 11th session, the UN's Commission on Sustainable Development decided that its multi-year programme of work beyond 2003 would be organized on the basis of seven two-year cycles, with each cycle focusing on selected thematic clusters of issues...

In each cycle, the thematic clusters of issues will be addressed in an integrated manner, taking into account economic, social + environmental dimensions of sustainable development. The Commission agreed that the implementation process should cover all these issues equally and noted that the selection of some issues for a given cycle did not diminish the importance of the commitments undertaken with respect to the issues to be considered in future cycles.

The Commission further agreed that means of implementation should be addressed in every cycle and for every relevant issue, action and commitment, and drew up the following set of (highly ambitious, wide-ranging) priorities for the next few years...

For example:

2004/2005 Water, Sanitation +Human Settlements

2006/2007 Energy for Sustainable Development, Industrial Development, Air Pollution / Atmosphere + Climate Change

2008/2009 Agriculture, Rural Development, Land, Drought, Desertification + Africa

Earth-Info.Net feels that the issues contained within each of these two years cycles will take many, many years to improve significantly, and that the failure to focus longer term global effort on simpler, more achievable priorities is a major weakness, as it dilutes effort on entrenched problems, builds in excuses for failure + repeatedly leaves important work unfinished.