The growing focus upon environmental issues was firmly consolidated on the political level at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992.
- The United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), also known as the Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit, Rio Summit, Rio Conference, and Earth Summit.
- It was attended by 170 states, thousands of NGOs and many multinational corporations.
- It succeeded in raising public awareness of the need to integrate environment and development.
- There was a consensus on combining economic growth with ecological responsibility, also known as ‘sustainable development’.
- The Rio summit produced conventions regarding climate change, biodiversity, forestry and recommended a list of development practiced called Agenda 21.
- This summit led to the development of the following documents:
o Rio Declaration on Environment and Development- It contained 27 principles that were supposed to guide countries in future sustainable development.
o Agenda 21- It is an action plan with respect to sustainable development, but it is non-binding.
o Forest Principles- It is formally called ‘Non-Legally Binding Authoritative Statement of Principles for a Global Consensus on the Management, Conservation and Sustainable Development of All Types of Forests’. It makes recommendations for conservation and sustainable development forestry and is non-binding.