United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

United Kingdom

Mr Chairman,
The United Kingdom aligns itself with the statement provided by the European Union, but we would like to take this opportunity to highlight a few areas for further reflection.
SCP is an important area of activity for the UK; it is one of the four priority areas as set out in our Sustainable Development Strategy released in March 2005; in this context we are very pleased to see SCP emerge as a key issue on the agenda of the current CSD cycle.
The UK has been keen to act on the principles agreed in Johannesburg in 2002. We have built up a wide-ranging national programme of action across the field of leaner production, greener products and sustainable lifestyles. We have also actively supported new frameworks of action at the level of the European Union.
But obviously the challenges of unsustainable production and consumption patterns are global challenges that require global responses. The UK has therefore been pleased to play a part in the United Nations Marrakech Process, supporting UNEP?s efforts to produce guidance on the development of national SCP action plans through contributing experiences gained in setting up our own national programme.
It has also been an honour to coordinate the International Task Force for Sustainable Products (ITFSP), one of seven Task Forces established under the Marrakech Process. The informal collaboration of the thirteen countries and four agencies on this taskforce led successfully to a formal IEA Agreement in 2008-09. This international agreement promises to be a powerful mechanism for raising the standard of crucial energy-using products traded in the global marketplace.
Mr Chairman,
The UK welcomes the suggestions contained in the Marrakech Process Progress Report prepared by UNEP and DESA on how international engagement on SCP could be further advanced at CSD-19.
First, the vision of SCP set out in Johannesburg in 2002 has been extremely important in helping countries to develop their own national approaches to sustainability. There is scope for a political consensus at CSD-19 to make that vision sharper and clearer and to stimulate greater national efforts and commitment. In this regard we would like to reiterate what has been highlighted by the European Union today on the need for a ten-year framework of programmes in support of regional and national initiatives to accelerate the shift towards SCP.
Secondly, the UK would like to see consensus at CSD-19 on the kinds of action required for all of us to tackle the challenge of establishing more sustainable patterns of consumption and production. The Marrakech Process has illustrated well the enormous scope of the benefits that can be gained from sharing good practices on SCP and supporting cooperation at all levels of engagement. A continued and strengthened Marrakech Process could be an effective tool to support implementation of a ten-year framework of programmes for SCP and should be utilised in the future.
We recognise that these objectives are ambitious; The shaping and launching of a ten-year framework of programmes for SCP will require a marked growth of ambition over the next twelve months so that the outcome of our deliberations next year is meaningful and will result in a substantial scaling-up of practical action. It is our choice whether we wish to rise to this challenge or not.
I thank you for your attention.